Colleen Kelly Mellor and her trucker husband, Paul Wesley Gates (“Gater” in the trucking trade), engage child audiences with their tales of a long-haul trucker who travels all over the United States, transporting households. Their largest audience was 150 little ones (k-grade 6) who alternately swayed to the music “The Nitro Express,” or actively participated, demonstrating geography skills learned in the program. (The tag line for Grandpa and the Truck is “We teach geography…and a whole lot more.”) Picture is of the Tiverton school audience, with children answering questions posed by Mellor (a 30-year teacher.) Reviews of their performance ran the gamut of “Wow, can’t believe they engaged such a sizable child audience that long!” to “I’ve never seen a presenter keep such young children riveted.”
“I was very happy with the presentation of Grandpa and the Truck at Ranger School. The students were super-attentive and involved. The students kept on track and involved for the entire time and for that to happen in a space of 30 minutes with kindergarten,1st and 2nd grade students is a real testament to the program.
I know it is their intention to bring trucking’s importance home to students, while we teach geography…nature…American diversity…via a vehicle they love–the big rigs. I was really impressed with the presentation.”
Ranger School Principal
From Media Specialist for Tiverton schools (The following is quoted material from Mr. Zanghi’s review of our performance.)
“Thank you for your visit to our School’s. Your presentation was an exciting blend of media that truly engaged our children. They especially enjoyed the slide show and interactive mapping activity. The students (K-2) were attentive and involved during the entire time.
The presentation really demonstrated the importance of trucking to students through the use geography, nature and diversity. They love the Big Rigs.
The Librarian in me really loves the non-fiction elements (Table of Contents, Glossary, Maps and Inquiry outlines) found in each of the Grandpa Stories. Thank you again for this wonderfully informative and entertaining presentation.”
Mr. Christopher E. Zanghi
Library Media Specialist