Kids meet Battle of the Books author screen-to-screen

AKTEACH students chat with author Eric Kimmel via teleconference. (Photo by Kayla Desroches / KMXT)

Kayla Desroches/KMXT

A number of Kodiak students took part in Battle of the Books this year. The competition challenges kids to read books and answer questions about what they read.

Homeschool and distance learning organization, AKTEACH, led a few teams this year. Some of kids gathered at the AKTEACH building on Mill Bay Road yesterday and spoke via teleconference with one of the authors they read.


Award-winning author Eric Kimmel reads from one of the hundred-plus books he’s written.

The audio is spotty at times, but the eight kids in the room aren’t fazed. They pass around a page with a list of questions, and come up with some of their own.

Kimmel also introduces his pet snake, which is a hit.

One of his books relates to another frequently demonized animal: the spider. Kimmel retold a West African folktale about a trickster spider in his 1988 book, “Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock.”

AKTEACH student Grace says they read it for Battle of the Books this year.

“He finds a magic rock and then, if they talk about the rock, then they will fall asleep.”

A few parents sit in the back of the room, including Holly Hunter, who says her kids love to read.

“My daughter really likes coming together and being part of a team and discussing the books with the other kids and just hanging out with other kids.”

This year, AKTEACH’s K-2 team won their district battle and the 5 – 6 grade team placed tenth at the state level.

For KMXT, I’m KD.

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