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Patch Whiz Kid of the Month: Siofra Linden

This first grader uses her vivid imagination to create dozens of stories and pictures.

Siofra Linden is 7 years old and an author and illustrator of dozens of stories and pictures.

She has been drawing since she was 4 years old and can’t seem to stop.

“It keeps me from being bored and gives me something to do,” said Siofra, who goes to Rollingwood Elementary and is in first grade.

She won a San Francisco Zoo Camp T-shirt design contest in March, for a picture she drew of a zebra. This summer, one of the camp teams will wear her T-shirt design.

“We get to write about what we see,” Siofra said about the camp.

Siofra likes to draw and write about animals (especially horses), heroes, family and people going on adventures. To get ideas she thinks of different people and animals she knows, she said.

“(Siofra) staples blank sheets of paper together to make books and spends hours writing and illustrating them,” said Siofra’s mother, Cliona McHale.  

Siofra writes and draws at school, but mostly on her free time.

“I sort of just decided to do it myself because it’s really fun, “ she said.

Some of her inspirations are: Magic Tree House books by Mary Pope Osborne, Diary of a Wimpy Kid books by Jeff Kinney, Ivy and Bean books by Annie Barrows and The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein.

Siofra liked The Giving Tree so much that she illustrated and wrote her own story, titled “The Lonely Tree,” based on the same idea.

“Siofra is a very engaging and engaged student.  She is always happy, friendly and gets along with everyone,” said Siofra’s first grade teacher, Candice Claussen. “She loves writing stories and her skill level at this age is quite remarkable.  It is always entertaining to hear one of her stories."

Siofra has also participated in community service. She volunteered at San Francisco Food Bank and wants to go back, she said. She also donated to an organization that raises money so kids with diseases can go to summer camp.

When she grows up, Siofra wants to be an author and illustrator. She also wants to teach horseback riding lessons to kids.

“Rollingwood is a wonderful school for Siofra to learn and grow,” McHale said. (Claussen) is an amazing first-grade teacher who has inspired Siofra in many ways and who encourages her to write.”

Siofra’s other hobbies include gymnastics, swimming and dancing.

In gymnastics, she is in Level 2 and she is the youngest in this group. 

In swimming she is in level 3 out of 4. “I like swimming because it’s kind of like gymnastics,” Siofra said. “I float and feel light; it’s fun.”

Below is Siofra’s final writing assessment for first grade, which left a lasting impression on her teacher:

Something I did in first grade

By Siofra Linden

In first grade I went on a field trip  We took a bus.  The place we were going was coyote point.  My group was with Mrs. Santo-stevanson.  Me and my friend were in the same group.  We had so much fun.  There were snakes, headgogs, owls, and foxes.  We had lunch yum.  I had spicy chips.  There was a thing were they told animals names and we got to pet animals.  There was a wheesle. (I got to pet him.)  And the people took out a long tunel thing.  The wheesle went threw it.  It was so fun.  Then we went to a playground.  Me and my best friend Mikaela. S. played a game.  Last we got on the bus and went back to school.  Me and Mikaela. S. told storys on the bus.  Then we got off the bus.  I went to Happy hall and Mikaela went to after school adventures.  Happy hall and after school adventures are after school pograms.  It was a great time.

SBParent June 06, 2012 at 06:57 PM
So nice to read these stories of our amazing and talented future generation! Congratulations Siofra! And a big thank you to your dedicated Rollingwood teachers and staff that help cultivate this love of learning every day!
Paul Linden June 06, 2012 at 08:24 PM
Thank you SBMom - we're proud of her. She's currently working on a story set at Christmas 1934, about a girl whose pony gets stolen, and who tracks down the thief, and another story titled "I used to have a home". Not sure how that one is going to end up but I can guess.

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