Delia Bowman Wach speaks with Calhoun students

Submitted by Tammy Yoak

Martin and Delia Wach are spending four days working with Calhoun's 5th through 8th grade and 11th and 12th grade honors English classes. Students will be writing a children's book, that they hope to have published.

The couple will be in Calhoun all day Thursday and Friday holding workshops.

Delia Wach is a highly acclaimed water color and mixed media artist; co-author and illustrator of seven children's books and her art lessons are available on DVD. She and her husband, Martin, have six years of experience in the South American Rain Forest with the Maroon Indians and Delia has expressed this experience through her imaginative art work as she turns the Maroon Indian personalities into Teddy Bears.

Together, she and Martin weave the stories and paintings into a magical series of children's books, Teddy Bear Guardians of the Rain Forest. They have visited over 370 schools nationwide as part of the Headline Kids Books School Show Program.

The Wachs have a Bed & Breakfast, art museum, retail shop and botanical gardens in Davis, WV. Sought after and very popular speakers, they are dedicated to visiting school children to share their unique experiences and talents and have inspired many to attain goals of environmental protection, art and social consciousness. Their school program enhances the classroom and opens young minds to many possibilities and potential careers.

The local project was made possible through the Professional Development Schools Partnership (PDS) with Glenville State College, Tammy Yoak is the Liaison for Calhoun Middle/High School. The partnership paid for a portion of the Wach's fee and Ms. Yoak wrote a grant to get the remainder of the funding which was also provided through the PDS.

The Wachs will explain the writing process from brainstorming to story telling to written documents. The presenter's will link verbal and written communication.

Students will also learn how to draw pictures and tell stories from those pictures. The Wachs will combine literary and visual arts.

Students will employ a wide range of writing strategies to communicate effectively for different purposes by: developing the writing process; applying grammatical and mechanical properties in writing; and gathering and using information for research purposes.

The Wachs will focus with students on how to link social and cultural verbal stories and combine into written documents. Students will show how to write in a clear and understandable manner.