Columbine for Students
Hey students. I built this page when I got home from my schools tour. I met about 5,000 of you guys, and you knocked me out.
I cannot believe how you've embraced my book. Or how much you love reading, period. So here is what you asked for and suggested. Talk to me, and I'll revise.
I shot this video to introduce myself, and show you where I work and live. (There's a little tour of my studio and apt at the end.) This is the first video I ever shot for YouTube, so I'm just learning. Thanks.
Columbine Student Guide
NEW: November 2010
Most of you have told me you read Columbine outside class, for your own curiosity. That makes me very happy.
But you can use that at school. I get tons of email from teachers and profs thrilled to see their students using the book.
The Student Guide includes sections to help:
- Choose a topic. Features extensive ideas for student papers, projects and class presentations.
- Research. Everything imaginable about the case gathered into one site, organized into categories for easy navigation: Journals, Killers, Attack, Victims, Depression, Evidence, Etc.
- Explore key topics in-depth. Topics include teen depression, PTSD, survivors and overcoming adversity.
- Resources. FAQ, author biography, book summary, bibliography, reviews, videos by Dave for students, next reads and more.
Skype your class with Dave Cullen
Are you reading Columbine? If ten of your classmates read it, I will do a skype session with your class (up to two schools per month).
To apply: 1) line up at least ten students, 2) talk to a teacher, libarian or counselor, then 3) click here for details.
Optional: Suggest your teacher or prof consult the Columbine Instructor Guide / Teacher's Guide about ways to use the book in class.
Example: Read Harker High School's summary of how they integrated Columbine and a skype chat.
FYI: Columbine was named Top Education Book of 2009 by the American School Board Journal. It won the Edgar Award and was an ALA Alex Award finalist.
Connect: Discuss Columbine Online
At Eastview Middle School
Videos for Classrooms
I have created a series of short videos designed to be played in the classroom (or at book clubs). Each video addresses a single topic about Columbine, which you all have been asking about at the schools I visit and book clubs I've called into.
I hope you might find the videos interesting regardless, or they might provide material you can use in a class paper or research project. Here are the topics, one per video. (The first entries are live links; the rest are under development.)
- Ten Central Characters in Columbine
- Learning from Black Hawk Down & Little Miss Sunshine
- Structure, part 1
- Organizing the book--and focusing the story
- Voice / Volume (eg, quietness of the narrator)
- Dialogue (especially when two of your protagonists are dead)
- My writing process and tips for writers
Join the Columbine Student Advisory Team
I started touring high schools and colleges this spring, and I've been inspired by the way you guys have embrased this book. Your enthusiasm inspired me to create this section of my website and series of youtube videos specifically for students. Now I'd love your help.
Did you love reading Columbine? Want to share that experience? Help spread the word. We are looking for energetic students in college, high school or middle school to join the Columbine Student Advisory Team. To be considered, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put "Student Advisory Team" in the subject line.
Initial suggestions include:
- Online discussion sites: How effective can these sites be for spreading the word about Columbine? Which sites would you suggest? Are you already active there? How can I help?
- Your school paper / college radio station: Do you work for the paper or station at your school/college? Know someone who does? Suggest an interview/feature. They can contact my publicist at Hachette Books: Sonya.Safro@hbgusa.com
I've been interviewed by the NY Times, LA Times, USA Today, ABC, NBC, NPR, etc. But I've only done a few college papers and one high school paper, probably because they were afraid to ask. (Way to go, Vicki Chen, at The Chronicle at Clark High School in San Antonio.) Corinne White did a great feature at The Dartmouth this month.
We are just getting started--help us organize and embark on an exciting campaign.
Dave's College Tour
- UC-Riverside, Palm Desert, June 2010
- Yale, New Haven, CT, October 2010
- DePaul University, Chicago, IL, May 2010
- Eastview Middle School, Bartlett, IL, May 2010
- UCLA / LA Times Book Festival Writing Workshop, April 2010
- University of California-Irvine, Irvine, CA, April 2010
- Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, MI, April 2010
- Clare High School, Clare, MI, April 2010
- Mt. Pleasant High School, Mt. Pleasant, MI, April 2010
- Haslett High School , Haslett, MI, April 2010
- Colorado State University, Ft. Collins, CO, March 2010
- Longwood University, Farmville, VA, March 2010
- Cosby High School, Midlothian, VA, March 2010
- Hershey High School, Arlington Heights, IL, October, 2009
- University of California-Northridge, Northridge, CA, September 2009
- Front Range Community College, Longmont, CO, September 2009
I took some time off the road, and am planning a new schools tour in spring 2011, doing large events of 800 students or more. There are costs involved, but if your school is interested, contact Bethany Belle at email@example.com I posted some school pix here. More coming.
This next shot captured one of my favorite moments of my career. I had just finished the presentation to 800 kids at Cosby High School, outside Richmond, Virginia (that's them in the photo above, too). We were scheduled for an hour, but the questions were so good, I kept blabbing 20 minutes past the cut-off time. I was afraid I'd bored them silly, so I muttered something about wrapping it up, and someone yelled "No!" I chuckled, but they persisted. But they had been sitting too long: they were quiet, but shifting in their seats. So I walked to the edge of the stage and asked the head of the English department whether I should really continue. She said definitely. So I had them all get up to stretch for a second. They were totally up for that. Getting them to sit down again was a problem. Hahaha. They wanted to hear more, but they needed to get the blood flowing.
I took my jacket off, they sat down, and we went two hours, total. Then I had to start thinking about catching my flight. I said goodbye and they leapt up and cheered. I nearly fell off the stage. That was so unexpected. And one of the highlights of my life. I'm not kidding. I'm getting a little choked up again just typing this. I had no idea kids would respond that way for a writer. That's the day I decided to extend my book tour--just for schools. That was the moment, really.
I grabbed my jacket, and headed for the exit again. Toward the edge of the stage, I was intercepted by a dozen students, who still wanted more. So I plopped my butt on the edge there, sat my water bottle down beside me and kept going. I have no idea how long that lasted. You can see the room was cleared by the time this shot was taken. I didn't even know there was a photographer. I was just lost in conversation with these kids who were so hungry to learn. That was a thrill, and a privilege. I would do this every day, if I could.
Columbine Intro Video
Help spread the word: link or embed to your FB/blog/Twitter. Or just click thumbs-up or favorite at youtube, or add a comment. It makes a huge difference. Thanks.
This page is dedicated to all the enthusiastic students I've met this spring: thousands in person, and many more on-line. Thanks for your energy, curiosity, and eagerness to learn. You guys have inspired me. I grew a little weary touring the past year, and you guys have totally refilled my gas tank. Thanks.