American School Visits

November passed by in a blur for me, with three weeks in the USofA cram-packed with school visits and catch-ups with friends. I have a ToDo list the size of Mt Everest that I am still chipping away at, but I am determined to post for Poetry Friday – so here I am with pictures! And some words…but there are not enough words to express how wonderful those three weeks were!

This week, I bring you two weeks of school visits! One week of visits with UBAM Consultant Beth Paiva – including schools in New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, followed by a week of visits in Virgina with Emily Griffin. I spoke with kids from Pre-Kinder to Yr 6, sharing a peek into life on our family cattle property, the inspiration for ‘Bully on the Bus’ and chatting about the verse novel format – and the fun of poetry! I absolutely LOVED each and every visit – and seeing how schools were using ‘Bully on the Bus’. In some cases a whole school read! If ever I doubt myself, I will bring myself back to these photos, because they bring me joy, joy, joy.

I never did get over my fascination for yellow school buses – in so many different shapes and sizes! In different weather, too; sun, rain and snow!

Week One:


Week Two:


I even managed to squeeze in a luncheon for community members… where I was thrilled to see ‘On Track’ – in large print. New to me, though I have to admit, I do much prefer the play with formatting and alignment in the standard version.

Dinner out with some of the UBAM sales team. And a rocking horse pig… because I may or may not have grown up on a pig farm…

Thank-you to all the amazing counsellors, librarians, educators, janitors and kids who made my school visits so amazing! The smiles are because of YOU!

There are many more pics to come – including lots with my wonderful Poetry Friday friends, but I’m saving them for another post – because there are already a heap of pics in this post. I have always loved Poetry Friday – but I love it so much more, now that I have met so many of you! Tanita is hosting the Poetry Friday round-up this week. I look forward to seeing what you’ve all been up to! xx


  1. What a FUN trip – your pictures are worth a thousand words! And my dad drove one of those wee yellow beasties, so I’m glad you got to get on one — I spent a LOT of time riding in yellow school buses! Hope you’re having a wonderful time visiting the US!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, what a lovely connection, Tanita! I find yellow school buses so fascinating. Their uniformity. And their shape – so different to Australian school buses – which are rarely yellow, and much sleeker. I’m home now – but yes, I had an exceptional time!


    • I miss you too, Laura – but I do love you popping up in my inbox. And I love the wonderful memories we captured in photos, too. (And I plot and plan to catch up again in the future! xx)


  2. I loved seeing your pics on Instagram & now today, more! The kids look very happy, Kat. I know you loved it and it looks like they did, too! What a fabulous trip! I love the school bus bulletin boards!

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    • So many pictures! 🙂 (So many more!!!) I was so sorry I didn’t get to meet you in my travels, Linda. I would have loved to have added you to the list of PoetryFriday friends I met in real life. (And I can never get enough of those school buses. Each one wonderfully unique!)

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      • I live too far from the east, Kat. And am not attending NCTE these days. But next year, it’s in Denver. I’ll be there then! So glad you loved your trip and yes, the first time I met different blogging friends, amazing and wonderful!


  3. I cannot imagine how you could possibly process your trip…..there are hundreds of children in your photos and at least a dozen teachers and school staff. I’m so thrilled that you got to share your books and your self with this audience. We need more international author visits! It’s good for everyone involved. Great pics….I hope you are finding a tiny bit of time for writing too.

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    • I fear that my memories will all go into a great melting pot before I DO process them!! But atleast they’re all good memories. 🙂 (Not much writing yet, though. So much ‘business’ to catch up on first. 🤷‍♀️ Though I did start tinkering with a couple of poems tonight. #yay


  4. These pictures bring me joy, too! Thank you for sharing them. It looks like you had a fabulous visit and I am thrilled you were able to visit. I just wish I were closer so I could have joined in some of the fun!

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  5. Your gallery of photos is fabulous! I especially love the one of you getting on the bus! I’m so glad you were welcomed in style and that you had the opportunity to share your book and yourself with so many enthusiastic students. I’m so glad we met IRL in Portsmouth and wish I’d been able to eavesdrop on one of your school presentations. Ah, well…next time I guess!

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  6. Good times, Kat! Thanks for sharing your photo album. I notice there’s a whole lot of smiling going on—by students, teachers, and you, of course! Next time you need to set up some visits in Florida, okay? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thanks for taking us with you Kat, on this virtual school whirlwind trip–it looks like it was a smashing success! Loved all the pics and the writing on how to steer bullies off, and of course the yellow school busses!

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