Children’s Literacy Festival brings hundreds of elementary students to Davenport’s River Center

DAVENPORT, Iowa — Nearly 700 students grades 3rd through 6th experienced the 2016 David R. Collins Children's Literacy Festival at the River Center in downtown Davenport.

"I love stories. Stories are part of what make us human beings. That's how we communicate," said Bruce Hall, author and illustrator and featured speaker at the half-day event.

Around 30 different schools from both sides of the river sent students to the festival.

Students laugh during a presentation by Bruce Hall, featured speaker at the 2016 David R. Collins Children's Literacy Festival at the River Center in Davenport, Iowa on October 18, 2016.

Students laugh during a presentation by Bruce Hall, featured speaker at the 2016 David R. Collins Children's Literacy Festival at the River Center in Davenport, Iowa on October 18, 2016.

"We dream in stories, we read stories, we see stories on screen and so to me, storytelling is at the heart of what it is to be human and so I love sharing my stories with kids and encouraging to do their own," said Hall.

Other speakers included Sarah Prineas, Gary Metivier, P.J. Hartenaus, Ryan Collins, Belinda Holdbrook, Mary Stewart Adams, and Anthony Wedgeworth.
"It's a wonderful day of rich literacy. I feel very fortunate that I was able to benefit from it growing up in the Quad Cities, and now I'm and educator in the community getting to see it through the kids eyes again," said Sarah Honn, Librarian at Paul Norton Elementary School in Bettendorf.
Honn brought a group of 3rd through 5th graders to the festival and says it's a great way for her students to learn different writing styles and even get themselves published.
Some of the feedback she gets from her students is that the writing festival is their favorite day of the year and that they want to be an author someday.
"Some of them are so talented that they absolutely could be an author someday," said Honn.
The 2016 David R. Collins Children's Literacy Festival is presented by the Bi-State Literacy Council, Davenport Public Library, and the Midwest Writing Center.