Monday September 24th, 2012

It’s Monday!

What are you reading?

Connect to Jen and Kellee’s meme to share all of your great reads – from picture books to young adult selections.

This is such a wonderful way to learn about a variety of new titles and to ensure that those To Be Read piles are very tall and very tippy. I think I have book stacks in about six different places in my classroom and my house.

Sigh. This will be week two where I haven’t completed a novel. Hoping this is not not indicative of my school year and instead just a result of a busy back to school season! It also doesn’t help that the book I have my nose in is 539 pages long (Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore) Although, I am loving every page so happy that there are more than 500 to savour!

So for this It’s Monday! What are you reading? post I am going to highlight  ten picture books (both fiction and non) that I read this week (some shared as class read alouds).

Jeremy Draws a Monster by Peter McCarty. This is an interesting little story told as much through the illustrations as through text. Jeremy is too shy to venture out and play and when he draws a monster and it comes to life, it turns out to be an annoying creature he wishes he could just erase. A very clever ending does resolve the monster issue but along the way some interesting themes are explored: imagination, the shy child, taking risks, etc. Beautifully illustrated by McCarty.

The Worrywarts written by Pamela Duncan Edwards and illustated by Henry Cole. I used this book to launch learning about making connections. Read more in this post. If you are reading this aloud, warm up! All of those W’s will exhaust your lips as you read! Fantastic alliteration from Edwards as usual.

Marshall Armstrong is New to our School by David Mackintosh I shared this book with my new class as a morning read aloud. We talked about how in a sense we are all new when we start a new school year even if we are not new to the school. This book helped us understand to reserve judgement with people “new” to us, to not turn away from someone who is different and to celebrate the unique aspects about us all. The students LOVED the illustrations and keenly studied all of the details on each page. They were particularly intrigued with Marshall’s “space” food.

There is a bit of a book obsession going on in our room with Mo Willems right now! Check out how book boxes looked on day one of setting them up. Elephant and Piggie books were gathered by the handful! We have, as a class, come up with a new rule: no more than one Elephant and Piggie book in your box so that there is access to all. Oh how we adore these characters!

I still come across titles that I haven’t read yet. I read When We are in a Book by Mo Willems aloud when requested by numerous students. And then I read it again because, well, if you read carefully, it does request the reader to do just that!

I am Going by Mo Willems was another title I read this week and then read over and over with a keen student who wanted to read with me, each of us being a character (Gerald or Piggie).

Jeremiah Learns to Read written by Jo Ellen Bogart and illustrated by Laura Fernandez and Rick Jacobson. This was a book I shared with my reading group as we talked about how reading is a gift. (For student reaction to the fact that Jeremiah couldn’t read, read here.)

All the Water in the World by George Ella Lyon and illustrated by Katherine Tillotson Lyrical language. Stunning art. Superb images. Wow. And . . . a fantastic book to teach the water cycle.

Are you a Grasshopper? by Judy Allen and Tudor Humphries I love these Are you a ____________? books and just added this title to my class collection. I have a real admiration for grasshoppers. For the last three summers we have walked through a water starved grassy bluff on Galiano Island. There is never anyone else there and it is vey quiet except for the grasshoppers. They are hidden in the tall dry foliage and the air absolutely vibrates with all of their noise. We always talk with our children about how this noise is produced and I love how it is explained and illustrated in this book.

What Comes Next? by Bobbie Kalman I have continued to add Bobbie Kalman titles to my non-fiction collection. This title begs to be interacted with, perfect for buddy reading. Full colour photographs illustrate a variety of nature concepts.

Animal Families by Bobbie Kalman This is another wonderful non-fiction title with many colourful photographs of animals and their families. Love the pages that explain how seahorse mothers transfer the eggs to the father seahorse. So interesting!

Really hoping next week will give me more time to read for big chunks of time so that I can finish Bitterblue and tackle other titles sitting in a stack just waiting for me. Next book? I think it will be Code Name Verity.

10 thoughts on “Monday September 24th, 2012

  1. Such beautiful picture books featured here! I love all of them. Some are familiar while others are new to me. I shall definitely hunt for them in our libraries. I think I have been remiss in the Elephant-and-Piggie aspect, as I haven’t read any of these Mo Willems’ books yet, now I’m definitely intrigued. I hope to find several in our libraries as well. 🙂 Best of luck in finishing Bitterblue! 🙂

    • Thanks Myra! The Elephant and Piggie titles are addictive. Powerful little books all the better to read aloud and share. Children in my class read and reread these books. They are fantastic to use to teach inferring from pictures as well (for those younger readers). Let me know what you think if you read any of them!

  2. I understand about the Bitter Blue-I have several books going & can’t seem to make any headway in them, time, time! I love the idea of that first book “Jeremy Draws A Monster”-would be so good to help support kids who are shy in starting something. And love the Elephant & Piggie books-so gleeful. Thanks for telling about all of these-always good to know about new ideas!

  3. I love that you included some fabulous non-fiction in your list! We read a lot of non-fiction in our house. Animal families looks very interesting, I bet kids love it. Also, I have to find All the Water in the World. The front cover alone is beautiful, plus it teaches the water cycle? Excellent! On the other hand, your comment about warming up before reading aloud The WorryWarts really had me laughing. I can relate as some read alouds take a lot our of you! I bet it would be great for teaching alliteration!

  4. I’ve felt so off on my reading time, too! I too adore the Elephant & Piggie books, and LOVE that you have to put a limit on them. We Are In a Book, is easily one of my favorites. The giggles it produces in the reader and audience are awesome. I love hearing about some of you worry/anxiety books . . . thanks for sharing those! And may the week ahead give you plenty of novel time! 🙂

  5. Carrie,
    It is really so much harder to read now, so I completely understand. I love the PBs you listed, especially ALL THE WATER IN THE WORLD. I heard this read aloud by George Ella herself at a conference. She is amazing in person.
    Similar to your Bitterblue story, I have had Divergent on my currently reading list for a while now. Need to finish that!
    Happy reading, and thanks for a great list!

    • Wow, hearing George Ella read this must have been lovely. She has such an inviting, soothing style. Good luck with Divergent. Think I’m going to tackle that in the winter holiday season! (Can’t believe I’m already making a To Read list for that time!)

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