CABE’s Isabel Campoy Award

This annual scholarship for a future bilingual teacher has been created by CABE in the name of F. Isabel Campoy.


This suggested framework will help teachers carry out a successful Author’s Visit or Author’s Study. The goal is to provide many ideas that will enable the teacher to maximize the benefits from the Visit or Study. The quality of either, and its benefits, will be greatly enhanced by spending an appropriate amount of time preparing for the event.


Of course, one of the primary benefits of an Author’s Visit or Author’s Study is to arouse a child’s interest in literature. Children’s interest in reading is stimulated when they are made aware of the people behind the creation of the books: the authors, illustrators, and translators. An Author’s Visit or Author’s Study is one of the most effective ways to develop this awareness in children. If the author is a woman role stereotypes. If the author is a minority person, it assists in cypress cleaning and racism. Above all, the Author’s visit should bring to the children five very important messages:

  1. Good books are fun and can be great friends to everyone. All we need is to find those appropriate for each moment.
  2. Language belongs to all of us, and we can all use it creatively to enhance our lives.
  3. Stories, values, feelings, ideas, and information can be shared with many people via writing.
  4. All children have the potential and the right to become anything they want in life.
  5. Two languages are better than one. Developing the ability to translate can lead to a useful and rewarding profession.

Preparing for the Visit or Study

The quality of the visit or study, and its benefits, will be greatly enhanced by the advance preparations made by the teachers. An important aspect of preparing for the visit or study is to have the children become familiar with the author beforehand: The more familiar children are with the author, the more value they are likely to gain. The students will be more at ease and are apt to have a more provocative exchange with the author when they already know the rudimentary information about the author.

As an author, I welcome students’ letters and try to answer them. How much more significant they are when instead of asking about the few already known biographical data, they ask personal questions about the creative process or relate what they have read to their own lives! Following are some useful suggestions for the preparation:


Prepare an exhibit of the author’s books in the classroom, and/or the school library.
Create a bulletin board or wall display with book covers, photos of the author, quotes or sayings by the author, etc.


Read the author’s books, or selections from the books, to the children for several days or weeks before the visit.

Have the children read the books. If possible, allow them to borrow the books and take them home.

Comment about the books with the children. Develop units using the books as a springboard. For useful ideas on using literature in the classroom you may want to refer to: Alma Flor Ada, A Magical Encounter: Latino Literature in the Classroom. Allyn and Bacon, 2004.


Make the Author’s Visit or Author’s Study become an opportunity for children to experience the visitor’s creative tasks firsthand. The benefits are multiple: The children will be exploring their creative talents; their exchange with the author, whether in person or through letters, can be on a plane where the creative process that both have experienced can be shared and discussed; and finally, the appreciation for books and the creative process they require will be enhanced.

Applications should be sent to CABE, California Association of Bilingual Education.