05/28/08 — North Drive teacher's reading script published

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North Drive teacher's reading script published

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on May 28, 2008 1:46 PM

A reading teacher at North Drive Elementary School has been published for the third time.

Gregory Brown's third children's script published by an educational publishing company, featuring an election-based storyline.

"The Great Rhyme Travel Machine Presents: African American Heroes," will be part of Playbooks Inc.'s "Readers Theater" series, promoting fluency and vocabulary growth.

It is a sequel to his second script, which introduced students to the American legends George Washington Carver and Shirley Chisholm.

In the latest installment, the pair are transported into the future through a time machine. While there, they help encourage a student running for class president, discouraged to find that no U.S. presidents have been female or shared their skin color.

The script was picked by the publishing company because of its depiction of character education and black history themes, which tied in neatly to the present day elections.

"One of my goals when writing my stories is to represent minority groups that are not seen in children's literature," said Brown, who currently teaches reading recovery, and Readers Theater at North Drive.

Readers Theater scripts are written for different reading levels, allowing teachers to privately assign character roles to students according to their level. The method allows all students to read together with confidence and enthusiasm while building individual fluency.

The lead character is Brown's latest work is biracial, a suggestion he made with the artist, he said, because such children are often left out of children's books and textbooks.

In addition to distributing the book nationwide, the publishers are developing a theatrical role-playing game based on the original character and stories in the series, Brown said.

"A version will be available this summer," he said. "They've asked me to work on the playing cards for the four decks that will be used.

"Pretty exciting stuff for a reading teacher!" he said.

Carol Artis, North Drive principal, expressed pride in Brown's contributions to literacy and the arts.

"Mr. Brown is an asset at our school and for our district. He shares his expertise with other teachers, and is always eager and willing to facilitate staff development workshops. It is exciting that other classroom teachers around the nation are using his stories to help strengthen their students' reading and vocabulary skills," she said.

Brown's first Readers Theater script, "Johnny Appleseed -- An American Legend," was published in 2006. Two years later, his second script, "The Great Rhyme Travel Machine" was released.

In February of this year, Brown partnered with the N.C. Department of Public Instruction to release "When Pink Flamingos Feel Blue" to elementary educators.