Sunday, August 24, 2014

Wild about Back to School Books! It's Monday, What Are You Reading? August 25, 2014

 It's Monday! What are you Reading is a meme began by Sheila at Book Journeys as a way to share what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and what is in store for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading. I first learned about it from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing Readers and have become a regular linked up blog. Thanks #PLN


Tomorrow the school bell will ring and the kiddos will flood the building again. Tears will flow. The first day of school is difficult for both parents and children. Tomorrow will be my youngest grandson's first day of preschool. He has been ready for two years-a born student! I predict the tears will be his mother's. She is a terrific mom. I only wish I could be his school librarian. I feel great knowing he is in the capable hands of a good librarian friend of mine.

We practiced school this week by reading these perfect first week of school books. I will be sharing these with my preschoolers this week too.








Mr. Bones is our library watch dog. He likes to help me out with library lessons and he enjoys sitting with Kinder and Pre-K students who are chosen by teachers as "librarian of the week'' He is WILD about books.











These are some books I will be reading to older students as part of library orientation.

 










 Learning to care for a library book and how to use your 
library manners are both important lessons to learn.


Learning about book care is easy using "What Happened to Marion's Book?" 
This is one of my favorite book care books because the children love Marion and can relate to Marion's many book mishaps. The teacher's guide includes band-aid bookmarks and Marion finger puppet templates. Mr. Bones shows the students all the poor damaged books that end up in the BOOK HOSPITAL. 













Once again, our school will be setting up book boxes outside of the classrooms for students to read while waiting for their teachers to open up classrooms. This has been a very successful idea mostly for the younger students. All you need is a box and some fun and interesting books and kids are hooked.


 Have the best reading week ever and happy first week of school to those starting this week.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

First Day of School Books, It's Monday, What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What are you Reading is a meme began by Sheila at Book Journeys as a way to share what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and what is in store for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading. I first learned about it from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing Readers and have become a regular linked up blog. Thanks #PLN

It's getting closer, and closer, and closer....the first day of school is just around the corner so it was time for me to pull out some of my first day of school books for some re-reads.  

Chu's First Day of SchoolChu's First Day of School by Neil Gaiman

It's Chu's first day of school and he is nervous. Will he make friends? Look at that adorable face, of course he will!



Curious George's First Day of SchoolCurious George's First Day of School by Margret Rey

George is worried about his first day of school and things don't go so well but since it's our sweet friend George we know by the end of the day it will be a success. 

 

Franklin's First Day of SchoolFranklin's First Day of School by Paulette Bourgeois

Franklin is nervous about starting school but soon his fears are eased. School might not be so bad after all. 



 


Little Critter: First Day of SchoolLittle Critter: First Day of School by Mercer Mayer

Little Critter is a bundle of nerves with so many things to take care of before he heads out to his first day of school. Clothes to pick out, lunch to pack, a backpack to pack up. A lift a flap book format.


The Night GardenerThe Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier

The first page of The Night Gardener was a fantastic book talk in itself. The setting is so well described that you can actually feel the atmosphere and that cliff hanger of a line "And they were riding to their deaths" will have kids begging to check it out. I recognize a brilliant book hook when I see it. I just hope it gives me nightmares.

Join fellow book lovers on Twitter during the #vbcbooks (Virtual Book Club) chat Monday, Aug. 11that 9 p.m. This will be a special DOUBLE book chat discussing Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes (so awesome} and The Night Gardener. Johnathan Auxier will be joining the chat to answer your deepest, darkest questions.

Thank you for taking time to stop by. Happy reading.


















 

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Ninja Power! Picture book style

















The Three Ninja Pigs and Ninja Red Riding Hood by Corey Rosen Schwartz and illustrated by Dan Santat are companion books that are a MUST have in any collection. The rhyme structure is  perfect, the action fun, the reaction from kids-priceless! Corey is also the type of author that likes to connect with teachers/librarians. Corey has generously sent me bookmarks for The Three Ninja Pigs and stickers, coloring page, teacher's guides, and an F &G of Ninja Red Riding Hood. You can connect with Corey on Twitter at or visit the Corey Rosen Schwartz blog or like her PB Ninja Facebook page.

Take a listen to this Let's Get Busy podcast with Dan Santat, illustrator of The Three Ninja Pigs and Ninja Red Riding Hood. Librarian Matthew Winner interviews Dan about all his amazing books.




Look at all these magnificent resources that Corey provides for The Three Ninja Pigs. She is an author that "gets" teachers.
I love the back beat of this video for Ninja Red Riding Hood.


And look! Corey has shared a Ninja Red Riding Hood Activity Guide.

I want to be Ninja Red Riding Hood for this year's Literature Parade. I hope I can pull it off without dislocating anything.

You might also enjoy this fractured fairy tale by Corey  Goldi Rocks and the Three Bears



Sunday, August 3, 2014

A Wild and Woolie Reading Week. It's Monday, What Are You Reading, August 4, 2014

It's Monday! What are you Reading is a meme began by Sheila at Book Journeys as a way to share what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and what is in store for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading. I first learned about it from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing Readers and have become a regular linked up blog. Thanks #PLN

This is a two week catch up post. I went on two wild and woolie road trips. The first with a couple of carloads of librarian friends to Houston to attend the Scholastic Reading Conference which was wonderful, fun, and delicious. The second was a birthday trip for my mom and that we called the Momma Jan Road Trip 2014 to Salado, Texas to visit my sister.

 
My mom is a devotee of the reality show Junk Gypsy so we took a side trip to Round Top, Texas where she met a couple of the Junk Gypsy ladies. My mom is so awesome.





Last week I read one YA Fic book-Graduation Day by Joelle Charbonneau finishing off The Testing trilogy. I really enjoyed the series and loved how Charbonneau ended the story in such a meaningful way. 












This week, I was cataloging a lot of new books to prep for the new school year so I took some time to read as many as I could.  Have you read any of these?


 My library hold for The Fault in Our Stars finally came available. I received the E book version which is very hard on my poor old weak eyes but I read until it felt like my eyes were bleeding. That is the sign of a great book. In fact, I looked away from my Ipad for a minute and could only see see black lines across the wall for a long time. Excellent storyline.



I also read 123 versus ABC that I received from author/illustrator Mike Bolt. Even the package it came in was  illustrated as well as the end papers. 








Now my grand-kids think all our books should have these cute little drawings.











I am currently reading Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith which I got for a bargain at Half-Price books- $4.98 with a coupon and teacher discount. Wow, I have been blushing a lot reading it but it really captures the teenage boy mentality well. I can so visualize this as it becomes a movie in the next year or so.







It's been a wonderful week for reading. Now I wonder what I will read next. Offer me some suggestions and thanks for stopping by, it's been fun.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Ready for a Reading Road Trip, It's Monday, What are You Reading, July 21, 2014

It's Monday! What are you Reading is a meme began by Sheila at Book Journeys as a way to share what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and what is in store for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading. I first learned about it from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing Readers and have become a regular linked up blog. Thanks #PLN


Source: Net Galley

Referred to as a meta-fictional picture book, this interactive story features our old cartoon buddies Tom the cat and Jerry the mouse. Jerry is hiding in the book and making quite a mess for poor old Tom. Tom asks the reader for help moving through the pages of the book sometimes quickly to avoid a dog attack and other times slowly to prevent setting off mouse traps.

I have been a fan of Tom and Jerry cartoons for many years so I liked it. I would have liked to have seen more interactions with the reader maybe Jerry was nibbling on some cheese and we have to smell it or Tom gets tangled up and we have to wiggle out. otherwise, it's cute.

Dear Wandering Wildebeest: And Other Poems from the Water HoleDear Wandering Wildebeest: And Other Poems from the Water Hole
by Irene Latham
Source: Net Galley

Wildebeest, impalas, elephants, giraffes, vultures and other African animals gather around a watering hole in this book of poetry infused with general information about the animals who co-exist, dependent on each other and the watering hole.

Favorite book of the week:

I became a fan of Rainbow Rowell after reading Eleanor and Park and Fangirl was just as wonderful. I can't wait to get my hands on Landline. Rowell has such a fresh and unique writing style and I appreciate the subtle humor sprinkled throughout her books.

This week I am taking a road trip to the Scholastic Reading Summit in Houston with six fellow librarians + one classroom teacher. Several months ago I registered our group and boy am I glad I did because it sold out quickly. I guess everyone heard that the amazing Donalyn Miller was going to be the keynote speaker. The sessions sound terrific and I am hoping to bump into Twitter friends while we are there.


 My current reads:
 I have already read The Book Whisperer and this week, I am starting Reading in the Wild.



I also picked up two books today that I have been really wanting to read and 
can't wait to sink my reading teeth into them.

 


Now tell me, what are you reading?




Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Reading Interest Surveys

 
A conversation popped up on Twitter today and here is how it went:
This is the wonderful thing about Twitter, you can reach out across the miles and get quick answers from your professional learning network (#PLN).

Scene: A child walks into a library, stops, and stands staring blank eyed at all the shelves filled with fantastic books while lamenting "I can't find anything to read." Pan the camera to a librarian in the shadows of the stacks clutching a knife in her heart. That is what it feels like when you have spent countless hours diligently searching high and low curating the perfect library collection. Or perhaps this soulless lament is a battle cry to the champions of all readers (yes that champion is you-parents, teachers, and librarians). Your quest is to help this woeful child discover their inner self so they may learn the secrets of selecting books to match their reading interests. Sound the battle cry and fade to black.

What is a Reading Interest Survey?
Questionnaires known as Reading Interest, Reading Inventory, or Reading Attitude Surveys are helpful tools to help teachers, librarians, and parents gain a sense of a child's interests, favorite things, likes, dislikes, hobbies, and how they feel about reading. This data can serve as a guide to help a reader learn to identify the types of books they might be interested in reading. The goal is to help readers become successful in identifying the right books that will motivate them without frustrating them.
  Ms. Murphy's "Getting to Know You" Reader's Interview.
The link above takes you to my Reading Interest Surveys. The first is a set of interview questions designed so partners may take turns interviewing each other while also getting      acquainted with each other.

What is the next step?
After collecting the reader's interviews, I review each student's survey with them to get a bigger sense of what type of book will click with them. Sometimes I offer them a good book match and other times we have to keep looking for the perfect fit. I keep the interview data in a binder so that I can flip back quickly when a student gets stumped and he or she needs a refresher on their likes and dislikes. I think I will offer kiddos a chance to edit their responses mid-year as they develop and grow as readers.    

Follow Julee's board Reading Surveys & Reader's Responses on Pinterest.

Interest surveys available online:

 “Garfield” Reading Interest (Professor Garfield) Survey: http://www.professorgarfield.org/parents_teachers/printables/pdfs/reading/readingsurvey.pdf

Clear Rapids Community Schools Reading Interest Surveys:




General Interest Surveys that will help librarians guide readers: Elementary student friendly with use of visual aids:

My Way:

This is a nice survey It's easy to complete.
If I Ran the School:

Starring Me!

Enjoyment of Reading survey-very old, but still effective use of questions. I really like this one but would combine with a happy face or Garfield type visual image for rating:


I hope you will find these resources helpful. If you have a reader's interest survey you would like to share, please add it in the comments section. Share the knowledge and empower us all.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

It's Monday, What are You Reading, July 14, 2014

It's Monday! What are you Reading is a meme began by Sheila at Book Journeys as a way to share what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and what is in store for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading. I first learned about it from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing Readers and have become a regular linked up blog. Thanks #PLN

There were so many books that I wanted to read this spring but my students had first dibs on them. With #summerthrowdown in full swing, I have been able to dive into my Summer Reading Wish List.

The Selection series has been entertaining at best although the writing has been a bit goofy at times but sometimes I don't mind goofy.





I also read aloud some of these favorite character books to a group of mommies and their babies during my presentation on the importance of early literacy and family reading traditions.  

 

...and then because I was in a Pete the Cat mood, I read these too.


ARCs I have read this week:

Sleep Tight Little BearSleep Tight Little Bear by Britta Teckentrup

A little bear and his mother prepare for their long winter's nap of hibernation by visiting each of their friends to say good-night. I had an immediate positive feeling regarding this book. The pros were:  beautiful illustration, a sweet family story introducing the concept of hibernation, and I cannot resist a bear story. The cons were: I think the bears would probably eat those very same friends they were telling good-night especially in the spring when they woke up. 




I also read Pig and Small by Alex Latimer. Great title and an interesting little book about a pig and a bug trying to make their awkward friendship work.







My favorite book of the week:

Always, AbigailAlways, Abigail by Nancy J. Cavanaugh
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Source: ARC received from Sourcebooks/Jabberwocky Kids
Release date: October 2014  
Realistic Fiction, ages: 9-13

I absolutely loved the story of Abigail and her terrible, horrible, no good, very bad sixth grade year. Abigail, the list maker and her two BFFs AlliCam (2 girls) have aspired to become pom pom girls since they first met in kindergarten. Disaster first strikes when Abigail is put in a different homeroom than AliCam and then her antiquated Language Arts teacher partners her up with the biggest loser in school. Ack!!!!

Always Abigail is told through a series of lists-funny, thought provoking, and much like the lists I used to find in my own daughter's room. I think it genuinely reflects the suffering, guilt, and angst a young girl can experience in her sixth grade year. I appreciated that Abigail had a very active conscience battling her daily.

Without a doubt, I will be purchasing a hard copy of this book for my school library collection. I think it can serve my young friends well.

I made a list of what I like about Always Abigail:

1. Abigail is an interesting, flawed, typical sixth grade girl striving to live up to her dreams while struggling with her conscience. 
2.  Ditto
3.  Ditto
4.  Ditto
5  Ditto
6.  Ditto 
7.  Ditto
8.  Ditto
9.  Ditto
10. Ditto

Getting ready for #virtualbookclub chat this Monday, July 14th at 8 p.m. EST. Join us!
I re-read A Snicker of Magic 

A Snicker of MagicA Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A sweet,charming story about a girl named Felicity Pickle and her destiny to lay down roots in the town where her mother grew up. A wonderful story of friendship and the importance of family. Read it and feel renewed by life.

This is going to be a great Twitter chat because we all loved the book so much. 

Currently reading:

Somebody on this Bus is Going to be Famous by J. B. Cheaney
Source: ARC received from Sourcebooks/Jabberwocky Kids
Release date: September 2014
Mystery, ages: 10-14







It has been a fun reading week. What are your reading?