Speaking Tour - Program Descriptions

Title: Hiking the Appalachian Trail

Program description:
This is a narrated PowerPoint presentation of Pam Flowers’ and Ellie’s hike along the 2,174 mile-long Appalachian Trail.

Program one is based on Pam’s book Ellie’s Long Walk.

Main point of the program:

Regardless of age, size, or resources, you can set a goal and strive to meet the challenge.

Three focus points:

  1. Preparing for the Appalachian Trail – students learn about Ellie as a puppy and the care she was given as a pet and as a traveling companion. Pam and Ellie’s training routine is discussed and many references to the need to treat Ellie and all animals humanely are included.

  2. Geography of the Eastern United States and trail conditions – images are shown of Pam and Ellie hiking the trail in many different conditions, climbing steep cliffs, crossing waterways and even passing through towns. Camping conditions on the Appalachian Trail are explained, including the need to deal with trash.

  3. Life lessons – a number of life-lessons are contained within the program, including the need to plan and prepare, persistence in the face of difficulties and discouraging times, and meeting and overcoming physical challenges.

Audience level:

This program is primarily for elementary and middle school students. However, it can be altered to be appropriate for high school level. Length, focus, and vocabulary are adjusted based on audience age.

Program components:

There are three potential components to this program.

You may select one, two, or all three components but please note the time requirements to complete each component properly. Also, it is extremely important to allow time to switch out groups between programs.

At the time an author visit is scheduled, Pam will be in direct contact with the person organizing the program to discuss which components you would like so that the visit can be coordinated with your needs and school schedule.

The three potential components are as follows:

  1. A PowerPoint presentation of Pam and Ellie’s hike down the Appalachian Trail.
    (35-45 minutes including Q&A)

  2. A grade-appropriate PowerPoint presentation about the writing process and how the book Ellie’s Long Walk went from concept to shelf. Students are introduced to terms such as author, editor, illustrator, publisher and how these people work together to create a book. Examples of text and art edits are presented.
    (30 minutes)

  3. Through the magic of PowerPoint the book Ellie’s Long Walk is displayed on screen while Pam reads a copy of the actual book she is holding, thereby allowing students seated in the back to clearly see the illustrations. Book readings are perfect short programs for kindergartener students.
    (15-20 minutes)

School preparation kit:

Well in advance of Pam’s visit, schools scheduling any length program will receive the same preparation kit. This includes one free hardbound copy of Ellie’s Long Walk and Big Enough Anna for the school library, expedition description, Appalachian Trail map, Ellie poster alerting students about time and date of visit, relevant resume, and book order form.

Fees and Options:

Shown below are the usual ways visits are scheduled. However, if you wish to make changes, most anything can be worked out so that Pam's visits will benefit your students the most.

For information on Pam's fee's please look at the fee schedule.

Half-day visits:

Two programs are offered in assembly format. Time for Q&A is strongly encouraged. Usually during a half-day visit, one program is given for the lower grades and a second program for the upper grades.

Two-Thirds day visits:

Three assemblies are given during this visit. Usually two programs are given in the morning and one in the afternoon. This works well for schools with larger student census and also allows morning and afternoon kindergarten students the opportunity to attend.

Full-day Visits:

Four or five programs may be scheduled. Usually three programs are scheduled in the morning and two in the afternoon.

A word about book signings:

The most frequent request I get for changes to the schedule involves dealing with book signings. Some schools are interested primarily in the programs and book signing is less important. But for other schools, author signings and the chance for their students to meet the author individually is the highlight of the visit.

The choice is of course yours, but please keep in mind that author signings take time and are a part of the time scheduled in your school.

Here is how book sales usually work (please note, no hard sell is ever made to your students by Pam).

  1. In your advance packet you will receive one each, free, hardbound copy of Ellie's Long Walk and Big Enough Anna for the school library.

  2. In your advance packet you will also receive a book order form.

  3. Please send the book order form home with each student about one week in advance of Pam's visit.

  4. Ask students to return the book order form the day before Pam's visit.

  5. Book order forms may also be turned in the day of Pam's visit.

  6. During the day of Pam's visit, she will sign all ordered books. If there isn't enough time to finish signing during Pam's visit, she will usually sign the books after school and leave them to be distributed at your convenience.

  7. If late orders arrive after Pam's visit, she will sign and mail the books to the school and Pam will pay the postage.

See Program Three details here.

Yes, folks, adults enjoy these programs too! Pam is available for evening and weekend talks at clubs, sporting stores, bookstores and with groups who love to explore and enjoy the wilderness.





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