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'Arthur' Author Awes Briarcliff's Todd Elementary Students

Briarcliff Manor’s Todd Elementary School welcomed acclaimed children’s book author Marc Brown, best known for his series about an aardvark named Arthur, as part of the PTA’s annual author visits series.
Briarcliff Manor’s Todd Elementary School welcomed acclaimed children’s book author Marc Brown, best known for his series about an aardvark named Arthur, as part of the PTA’s annual author visits series. Photo Credit: Briarcliff Union Free School District

BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. -- Marc Brown, known for his “Arthur” series, visited Briarcliff Manor’s Todd Elementary School and treated students to the ideas behind the series.

Second-grade students prepared for Brown’s visit by reading “Arthur Turns Green,” after which they discussed and wrote problems and solutions presented in the story. They were joined by their kindergarten and first-grade peers for two sessions with Brown, an event made possible through the support of the PTA.

Brown impressed students with his on-the-spot drawings of popular characters, including Arthur and D.W., whom he has been writing about and illustrating for 38 years.

Brown, who receives about 100,000 letters from children every year, treated Todd Elementary students to answers to some of the most frequently asked questions in those letters. He shared that he thought about the concept for Arthur after witnessing a child bumping into things at school and accidentally going into the girls’ bathroom. All of the characters in the series are based on people Brown has known throughout his life, including his own three sisters who together make up the mischievous D.W.

“I get ideas for characters from people I know. My seventh-grade teacher is now Mr. Ratburn, in the series. If you keep your eyes and ears open, you will find ideas,” Brown said.

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