Monday, October 28, 2013

All the Lovely Bad Ones and Some Good Ones too! #IMWAYR October 28, 2013

I I delivered a lot of creepy, scary book talks this week as we explored HORROR Fiction as a genre. Mary Downing Hahn was right at the top of the list along with Goose Bumps, Scary Stories, and the book in greatest demand in the ECDC Library. The Big Book of Texas Ghost Stories. 

I couldn't keep up with students wanting Halloween themed and really scary books. Just as soon as I book talked a title and set up a display, I had to go seeking new books to refill the empty displays. 

Cowboy Clifford shared his favorite Halloween reads
and talked to kids about dressing up for the school Literature Parade. 
Integrating math into a Halloween lesson is always easy when you have books like 16 Runaway Pumpkins (theme doubles). It makes for a fun lesson and count aloud. 
The Runaway Pumpkin was a good pairing. 

Double rainbow was gorgeous. 
These were some nice things that happened to me this past week. The Caller Times did a spread on Coastal Bend Book Fairs and my school fair was the focus. My students had their big moment of fame being quoted and featured. I was very pleased with how well they represented their school.

My Favorite Book of the Week:

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
There is a book thief in town snatching all the bedtime books just as families are settling in for their nightly reads. Who would do such a dastardly deed? One brave little bunny sets out to solve the mystery and return the books back to their rightful owners.

The Snatchabook is my  new favorite read aloud book. You just know when something magic appears in your hands in the  form of a children's book. My head is spinning with ideas to use along with this precious story that reminds me a bit of How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Snatchabook would be a great read aloud choice for a Family Reading Night event.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Patrick O'Shanahan walks in to breakfast one morning and is surprised to find a cow standing there. When Patrick's father arrives and decides to make French toast without noticing the cow, Patrick decides to help his dad by getting the best in farm fresh products that have appeared in his kitchen in the form of farm animals.
YA Books

Crash (Visions, #1)Crash by Lisa McMann

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Crash is a forbidden love story in the vein of Romeo and Juliet. Jules' family lives above their restaurant as do their rivals the Angotti's. Jules has been in love with Sawyer Angotti for years but for the  past several years, he has been shunning her and she doesn't understand why unless it's all about the family rivalry. Jules now has bigger problems than unrequited love, she is seeing horrific visions of a snowplow crashing into a building that leaves nine dead bodies in the snow and one of those belongs to Sawyer. Everywhere Jules looks, she sees the visions of the crash on billboards, windows, TV and computer screens, and now they are coming faster and more frequent. Can Jules unravel the clues hidden in the visions and save Sawyer or is he doomed to die? What if the visions are not real and she is going insane? What's a girl in love to do?
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This past week, I fell victim to a book spoiler when I became curious about a Twitter game #fictionaldeathsIwillnevergetover. 
I am going to share this with  my fellow librarians at our next PD session. Just slap a bit of butcher paper up (oh, in the shape of a tombstone) and see what everyone comes up with. This topic will make for a good book chat for our university students too. For me, the hardest death to bear was when Beth, the kindest, sweetest, dearest of the March sisters passed away. It still breaks my heart to this day. I threw Harry Potter books across the room at the deaths of Dumbledore, Sirius Black, and Fred Weasley (NO! not a twin. I have twins. How can they live without each other?) That poor Harry Potter couldn't ever catch a break. I felt so depressed after reading about their deaths. 

Currently Reading: 

Dozens of Picture Books in preparation for writing daily blog posts for Picture Book Month as a Picture Book Blogger and to prepare for #virtualbookclub's Mock Caldecott chat in November. 

Picture Book Month information

The List by Siobhan Vivian
It happens every year. A list is posted, and one girl from each grade is chosen as the prettiest, and another is chosen as the ugliest. Nobody knows who makes the list. It almost doesn't matter. The damage is done the minute it goes up.

Next up:

I am really looking forward to reading the conclusion of this series.

So, what are you reading?

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Sounds of Halloween #IMWAYR 10/21/2013

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 at Teach Mentor Texts. 

I had such a fun week reading these four books to kiddos. I called them my Halloween sound books because each one had great opportunities for kids to help me "read' the story by doing the sound parts. 

My favorite was Bedtime in the Swamp by Kristyn Crow. It had a great repeating rhythmic 
refrain and we added some hand gestures to make it easy to remember and repeat. The kids LOVED this book about a ma trying to get her kids to come in and get to bed. This is a fun monster book that is not too scary. 

Splish Splash 
Rumba Rumba
Bim Bam Boom!

Splish Splash
Rumba Rumba
Bim Bam Boom!

Skeleton Hiccups by Margery Cuyler  is a tough read aloud if you are trying to make the hiccups sound real so I decided to have the kids do the hiccup up part. They had so much fun hiccuping and my voice was able to survive multiple read alouds. Poor old Skeleton does his best to get rid of his hiccups with the help of his friend Ghost. 

Five Black Cats by Patricia Hagerty was a great rhyming lesson. Sometimes during library class, we play guess the rhyme game. I read everything but the last word in a stanza and the kids have to supply the word that rhymes. 
Even three year olds were able to guess most of the rhyming words.

Click Clack Boo! a tricky treat by Doreen Cronin was full of creaky, crunchy words and was simply a fun Halloween treat to read aloud. Farmer Brown does not like Halloween so he sets out a bowl of candy for trick or treaters along with a do not disturb sign then he dons his p.j.'s and covers up his head but the barnyard animals have other plans for him that might be part trick and part treat. 
Here is a useful Educator Guide for Click Clack Boo that includes enrichment activities. 

These four books turned out to be just perfect for this week's lesson-The Sounds of Halloween. 

This week I have been encouraging students to start thinking about which storybook character they want to dress up as for the Literature Parade. I snapped a couple of photos of what first graders were thinking they might want to be. I think these would make great costumes. 

Fly Guy add wings and a couple of ping pong balls for eyes. 

Piggie just needs a pink outfit and some piggie ears. 
I also read: 
The Other BearsThe Other Bears by Michael        Thompson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The illustrations were rich in colors and details and they drove the story. The most interesting part of the book was the descriptions of the bears in the story. The theme of the story was a good choice but I was not engaged in the telling of the story. I would have enjoyed this book more if it had featured each bear family and some interesting details about them rather than grumbling, whining Koala parents.

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I was so happy to receive these bookmarks from Claire Legrand. I can't wait to read her book The Year of Shadows. It looks exactly like the type of book my students would love to get their hands on. She has the most amazing business card. 

I am looking forward to joining my book friends tomorrow night at 9 p.m. EST for #virtualbookclub as we chat about Gennifer Choldenko's book Al Capone Does My Homework. Join us won't you?

Have a lovely reading week!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Success! #IMWAYR October 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 at Teach Mentor Texts. 

What an exhausting week! I am totally Book Faired out! It was a great success and now we will be able to purchase many new wonderful books for our school library and for our classroom libraries. The Magic Wand pens shown below were my favorite gadget in the book fair. You can not believe the number of magical spells that were cast around the library this week-even the unforgivable spells. 

I have read so many books this past week. Z is for Moose is a preschool favorite.

Pete the Cat ruled my bookfair. I only wish I could have gotten Pete the Cat I Love My White Shoes to share with all the new preschool kiddos and the Teacher Ed students. I worked very hard to get copies of Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses. I ran out to Dollar Tree and picked up a couple of pairs of those giant size blue sunglasses to wear when reading aloud the story. Terrific read aloud. Another hit in the Pete the Cat treasure chest. 

I read a chapter or two two of my Al Capone Does My Homework each night. What a fun book. I am really enjoying it. I am reminded of the importance of keeping a good selection of mystery books in my library. Kids love mysteries. 

Time's up and time to watch my favorite PBS Sunday night shows. Happy Reading!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Book-a-paloosa #IMWAYR October 7, 2013

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 at Teach Mentor Texts. 

The sight of this truck brings smiles to everyone who sees it 
and the kid in all of us shouts "Hooray, the Book Fair is here!"

It took a lot of work but I finally got my Scholastic Book Fair all set. Thank goodness I have a large space to feature books and keep my library open for the students to continue using. 

Look at all these books! I was in reading heaven. I must have read one hundred books after setting up the fair. 
There are so many choices-it's a Book-a-palozza!

Scholastic now offers a book fair decorating kit which included this two sided Photo Op display and also an awesome Pharaoh's head piece.
The Pre-school and picture books  offered some terrific read aloud choices. The books shown here were favorites. I had the most fun reading Count the Monkeys the kids loved helping me scare away all characters in the books. They loved the ending. That Mac Barnett is one funny fellow.

Pete the Cat: The Wheels on the Bus brought the house down. Everyone, including parents and teachers joined in singing along during read aloud time.

Have Fun, Molly Lou Mellon is always a great read aloud choice sharing the importance of using your imagination.

The Gingerbread Bear was also a favorite with Kinder and Pre Kinder classes. 
The first graders were buzzed about Fly Guy and the Frankenflly.          


Charlie the Ranch Dog is an old favorite friend so we were very happy to welcome his two new adventures Where's the Bacon? and Charlie Goes to School which both proved to be read aloud treats. Several of  our preschool, Kinder, and first graders loved "Silly Doggy!"and it has been a hot seller in the book fair. 

#VirtualBookClub Read: Al Capone Does My Homework

Lucky for me that I was stuck at the Goodyear dealer (they are the nicest people) for 2 1/2 hours and I had brought along my public library copy of Al Capone Does My Homework. I was laughing out loud and deep into the story when my car was ready. I had almost hoped they would have taken a little bit longer so I could keep on reading. Check out the description at Penguin Kids
Join the fun over at #VirtualBookClub as we explore the mysteries on Alcatraz Island and share our favorite parts of the book and its characters. 

Where: On Twitter using hashtag: #virtualbookclub (I use to keep up with the discussion)
When: Monday, October 21, 2013 at 9 p.m. EST/8 p.m. CST
Who: Anyone who has read the book or would like to learn more about it. Hopefully Gennifer Choldenko will drop by for a few minutes. Most authors usually join us for part of the conversation. 
Why: Folks who love children's literature often have a hard time finding other grown ups to discuss children's books. We are a group of teachers, librarians, authors, illustrators, and literacy advocates who believe in reading and discovering high quality children's literature and sharing our opinions and thoughts with each other. 

Counting by 7's by Holly Goldberg Sloan
On Friday, I was tickled pink to receive this package from @PenguinKids It arrived in a beautiful, shiny purple package. I can't wait to begin reading it. I hear from so many people on Twitter that it's their favorite book this year. I am also nervous about reading it because I understand it is an emotional loaded read and with the stress of book fair and several professional presentations all within a couple of weeks time, I think it might be too much for me to handle at the moment. However, it sounds exactly like the type of book I love to read-full of well developed and lovable characters and a story that touches your heart. I like to read books that move and change me as all good books should do. 
Thank  you Penguin Kids, you have bestowed this book on a most grateful recipient. 

Check out this book review by Alice Marvels

FYI: October 23, 2013 is the date applications open for World Book Night 2014
I gave out John Green's Looking for Alaska last year and it was a wonderfully experience. 
Learn how to become a Book Giver: HERE

Happy reading!