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Girls Keep Score

Apr 29, 2013

Greg Bancroft on The StudioWhen Greg Bancroft set out to write Betsy’s Day at the Game, he had one goal in mind. “I wanted the reader, especially young girls, to learn how to score a baseball game,” Greg says. In his book, Betsy loves hanging out with her grandfather at the ballpark, so to impress him, she begins to track the foul balls, home runs, and favorite players.

Brownies working on their Fair Play badges, Juniors working on their Practice with Purpose badges, and Cadettes working on their Good Sportsmanship badges learn about fair play and good sportsmanship. By this time, they also know that scoring is a critical part of any game. “I found that children, once they learned how to keep score, are more interested in [the game],” Greg notes.

Besides being a sports buff and a children’s book writer, Greg is also a pastor, a job that requires storytelling skills. “When preaching a sermon,” he says, “I often tell stories to illustrate a specific word or to underscore a particular point. Trying to inspire people to be generous and feed the hungry is not as dramatic as relating an experience of hundreds of people packing tens of thousands of meals that keep children fed all year. The listener will remember the story long after the sermon because she or he can relate to children being fed all year, especially if that listener was involved in the meal-packing event!”

Greg offers tips for girls who want to write, such as being observant: “How do people move, talk, and interact with each other? What color is the sky, really?” He also suggests this fun writing exercise: Think about what it’s like to be hot or cold. Now describe that in writing to someone who has never experienced being hot or cold. How would you do that? Read more about Greg’s advice for young writers and his storytelling background on The Studio.