Walking in Ava’s Shoes

Walking In Ava’s Shoes
Author: Kathi Howard-Primes, M.Ed
Grades K-8

Story Summary
Ava explains how she goes about her everyday activities processing information with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).


  • Read the story to the students. Discuss the story according to the appropriate standards for the grade level. See standards at: https://education.ohio.gov/Topics/Learning-in-Ohio/OLS-Graphic-Sections/Learning-Standards
  • Discussion
    This is a vivid story about a little girl named Ava that has ADHD. She explains how she sees and understands the world around her and what helps her still be successful every day.

    • What does Ava say she has? How does Ava describe her behavior?
    • What are some things that Ava likes to do? Do you also like to do some of these things?
    • What problems does Ava have in class? Have you ever felt this way? Why or why not?
    • Why is it a problem for Ava to daydream in class?
    • Is it okay to daydream? Why? What is your favorite thing to daydream about?
    • What kind of listener is Ava?
    • How does Ava’s teacher help her stay on task?
    • How do each of these help Ava to be great? What can you do in each of these areas to help you have a better day?
      • Food
      • Health
      • Organization
      • Rest
    • What does Ava hope for as she starts a new day? What is your hope each day?
    • How are you like Ava? How are your different?
    • What is the best way to get help if you are having trouble in school?
    • Ava has unique qualities that make her special. Think of two unique qualities you have as an individual. Share them with a partner or the group. Listen as your partner shares their qualities. Take note of any similar and/or different qualities that you and your partner have.
  • Have each student trace their footprint, cut it out, and have them write their own story: Walking in ____________ shoes.
  • Graph out those activities enjoyed that help make the child/class a better student or those things/thoughts that keep the student from focusing.
  • Fry Sight Words – Identify sight words throughout the book. (the fry list is a the back of the book) Create flashcards utilizing the sight words used most frequently in reading and writing. Utilize the Fry Word checklist to find additional sight words in the book.
  • Read the story and turn it into a play or rewrite the story as a diary entry from Ava’s point of view.
  • Play bingo using the sight words identified in the book. (Bingo cards have been created)

Additional Resources:

Kathi Howard-Primes Bio

Kathi Howard-Primes is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Momentuum, LLC and author of the newly released children’s book Walking in Ava’s Shoes. Kathi holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Ohio University and a master’s degree in education from Cleveland State University. Momentuum, LLC, was founded in 2006, in response to a critical need for expert tutoring to assist students in attaining their highest academic potential. Momentuum, LLC has worked with students in school districts throughout the state of Ohio. Kathi’s background includes experience with online, small group and one-on-one tutoring, developing and implementing out of school time programs, academic coaching, mentoring, ACT and SAT test prep, early academic intervention programs, parent engagement programs, and advising students about career and college choices.
Kathi is a member of the State of Ohio Department of Education 2020 Performance Standards Committee for the third grade assessment, a 2012 graduate of Cleveland’s first cohort of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program. Momentuum, LLC was nominated as one of the top female minority owned small businesses in 2018 and spotlighted by the Northeastern Ohio Women’s Business Center in 2023. Kathi was also selected by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated National Arts and Letters Commission as a Delta Author on tour. Kathi is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., The President of The Greater Cleveland Delta Foundation Life Development Center, a member of the Links, Incorporated and a past board member of Seeds of Literacy. Kathi is married to Marlon and they have two adult children that live in Washington, D.C. Kathi enjoys gardening, mentoring, reading, traveling and spending time with family and friends.