Monday November 4th, 2013

It’s Monday! What are you reading?


Join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers and share all of the reading you have done over the week from picture books to young adult reads! Follow the links to read about all of the amazing books the #IMWAYR community has read!

A book filled week to be certain! Some of it was spent reading books. Much of it was reading books to my students. And laughing and wondering and being in awe. Shared a lot of our reading week on our new classroom blog in a new feature called That’s a Wrap!.

Here are my favourite picture books of the week:

Anna May’s Cloak written by Christiane Cicioli and illustrated by Susan Pearson

Isn’t this cover absolutely divine? This is a beautifully illustrated book that spans generations and weaves the importance of a blue cloak into the love of a family. Reminiscent of Something from Nothing by Phoebe Gilman.

Anna May's Cloak #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Flood by Alvaro F. Villa 

A powerful wordless title that looks at how nature can change everything for a family when a storm causes floodwaters to threaten the safety of their home. Powerful images of worry, upset and hope.

Flood #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Chu’s Day written by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Adam Rex

I always appreciate Adam Rex’s illustrations always but these are particularly adorable. A simple and exaggerated story line of a powerful little sneezer. I found this charming as I once taught a student who sneezed (always in threes) so loudly that he could be heard in every classroom on the same floor. A sneeze can be quite the thing!

Chu's day #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

The Watermelon Seed by Greg Pizzoli 

This week some of my curious little students went exploring the Halloween display across the hall. The scattered candy proved too tempting and there was a little bit of tasting. Then there were rumours of the dangers of this oldish candy and oh, my, oh my! The anxiety set in and turned, for some, to full blown panic. We all calmed down, learned a lesson hopefully to not sample candy in a display but wow, did it prove that the worry of consuming something that maybe should not be consumed is a powerful stressor! This is the theme of this delightful little picture book told through sweet illustrations all pink, green and black and much humour. What happens when you swallow a seed? Will you end up as fruit salad? Sprouting vines?

Read and find out just what happens to this voracious watermelon muncher.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

The Day the Crayons Quit written by Drew Daywalt and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

I know, I know. Everyone has read this book. And I just finally did. It wasn’t for lack of awareness! It just hadn’t happened. Love Jeffers. Love the voices. Fun all around. Mostly what I love is watching students sit and share this book together. One day last week, two girls chose reading this book (taking turns as different crayons) to a classroom volunteer over play time during choices. I think they might have had the most fun in the room!

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Living Sunlight: How Plants Bring the Earth to Life by Molly Bang and Penny Chisholm

Gorgeously illustrated, this book conveys so much about the importance of sunlight and green plants to our life and survival. Nicely accessible for kids with lots of relevant and additional information in the back.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

I’m a Frog! by Mo Willems

A purely whimsical celebration of pretend like only Elephant and Piggie can do it!

I'm a Frog #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Other reading:

Ivy + Bean: What’s the Big Idea (#7) written by Annie Barrows and illustrated by Sophie Blackall

Ivy + Bean titles are big in my classroom this year! I have a few girls who have made it a goal to read every title in the series! I must admit to being pretty partial to these energetic and interesting friends myself. This book explored the idea of saving the planet. What could two girls do that would make a difference? Turns out that after some very outlandish ideas like throwing ice cubes into the air to slow down global warming, Ivy and Bean happen upon an idea that might make a big difference in a small moment for the very people who might need it most.

What's the big idea? #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan

I’m going to start by saying that I think I might just have met some characters that could be the most memorable characters I have met in some time. I would like to have weekly check in sessions with them or at least regular emails/updates. These were characters that you would never put together but yet they turned out to be the perfect fit. Willow Chance inspired me to think about what it is to have “people” in your corner. She reminded me that growing anything in a garden has all kind of magic wrapped up within it. She also made me a little anxious about many things that she knew mostly everything about: the importance of staying hydrated, how essential regular flossing is and why we shouldn’t ignore any strange skin conditions. Willow Chance: brilliant, quirky, vulnerable and not nearly as enigmatic as she first appears. If you have read this title, I’m betting on the fact that you loved it. If you haven’t, what are you waiting for?

Counting by 7s #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Next up? I am beginning the only title by Jo Knowles that I have yet to read! Living with Jackie Chan. I read Jumping off Swings earlier this year and have been eagerly anticipating this title! Knowles is one of my absolute favourite authors so I know I have many happy reading moments ahead.

My students and I are absolutely adoring The Small Adventure of Popeye and Elvis by Barbara O’Connor. Whoa can this lady pull kids in and quick? My students beg me to read more of this novel multiple times a day!

24 thoughts on “Monday November 4th, 2013

  1. Thanks for these recommendations, Carrie! I just put Flood on my list to order for our library. I love wordless picture books that have themes that older kids can discuss–great for ESL students and struggling readers. Thanks again!

    Natalie @BiblioLinks

    • Thanks Natalie. Flood would be an ideal book to explore with older readers – pair it with Thunderstorm by Geisert – another wordless title that explores the impact of extreme weather.

  2. I agree with Natalie, wordless picture books often offer such depth and meaning. I have found them very useful for book discussions among older students. Students are eager to offer their interpretations of stories.

    You had several good choices this week. Thank you

  3. What a wonderful list of books, as always! Yours is always the first blog I visit on Monday mornings! So glad you enjoyed The Day the Crayons Quit. That was one of those books that has my older son looking at me like I’m a space alien because I am cackling so hard I can barely finish reading the book (I’m a Frog hit me that way too!). I meant to use that one as a writing prompt in my Freshman Comp class this semester and forgot about it. Maybe I’ll use it next week! It’s not too late…. Counting by 7s is sitting on my shelf… hoping to get to that soon. I’m in the middle of Eleanor & Park this week (finally!). And traveling this week, so I’m at the mercy of whatever is on my Kindle (lots and lots of things–but I don’t read regularly there, so it will be a big surprise tomorrow to discover whatever book I was in the middle of last time I traveled for work!) Enjoy your week, Carrie!

    • I loved Eleanor & Park – same wonderful appeal of the characters you wouldn’t normally meet – just like Counting by 7s. Thanks for such lovely feedback about my blog! So pleased that you are able to find some kindred book spirit! It is quite delightful how children’s books can make us absolutely crack up!

  4. I’m so glad that you enjoyed Counting by 7’s – that’s exactly what I thought of this wonderful book, too.I need to look into Ivy and Bean, it looks charming.

    • My favourite thing about Ivy + Bean? It was a Dad (well a Dad who is my friend) who convinced me to read these titles. He has read everyone to his daughter and couldn’t say enough great things about them! And yes, Counting by 7s. Wow!

  5. I was looking forward to Counting By 7s before your review, but probably even more so now. I even have a copy of it waiting for me. Must remedy! And for the record, you’re not the last person to read The Day the Crayons Quit. I had it on hold, but failed to grab it in time before the hold expired. Back in line I go! 🙂

    • Phew! I thought I WAS the last person! 🙂 Isn’t it funny how certain titles just keep slipping through our fingers!? Please read Counting by 7s – I think you will LOVE it! The characters, the characters, the characters . . .

  6. Hi Carrie,
    Like Lorna said, I too have been wanting to read Counting by 7’s, and your review makes me want to read it all the more. Nice picture book selections this week! Flood looks wonderful. Have a great week!

    • Flood would be a great title to share with your group. So much of a story told through pictures. Counting by 7s is AMAZING which I guess you probably figured out from my review!!

  7. Wow Carrie, I might just have to find Counting by 7s, it does sound like a delightful and important read. Thank you again for sharing such lovely picture books. You are right – the book cover of anna may’s cloak is beautiful. and like you, i am late to the oliver jeffers’ crayons party. i have yet to find that book and give love to it. haven’t read any ivy + bean yet, but have been seeing it around. i should be reading more middle grade/early reader books. 🙂

    • Ivy + Bean has lots of important early chapter book spunk. I do quite adore these characters and all that they get up to! You can join Lorna and I in the late arrivals to the Crayon Party! 🙂 I think you would love Counting by 7s – the characters are so unique!

  8. I love the idea of Anna May’s Cloak, will be sure to find it, Carrie. I have I’m A Frog & my granddaughter and I have laughed over & over at it, but her favorite is still A Big Guy Took My Ball. I won a lot of the Ivy & Bean books last year, think they are wonderful in their individualities & what that teaches, along with the individual book themes! Flood looks great, and I know Counting by 7’s must be, too-just can’t get to it yet! Thanks much for all your fabulous ‘finds’!

    • I loved A Big Guy Took my Ball too! I hear Elephant and Piggie ALL day! Told my students these are great titles to practice their expression so all over my room are children reading with perfect Piggie and Gerald enunciation! Hope you do get to Counting by 7s – Willow Chance is a girl who needs to be met – even if it is through a book!

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