Monday December 14th, 2015

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

I have been sharing a reading photo of the week each week. Often two. So why not three? Sometimes, the mood hits. Finally, finally, our Reading Workshop is consistently working! So I have to share!

Here are my students singing and reciting poems together at the end of Reading Workshop this week. Completely unexpected and spontaneous. A beautiful thing.

There's a Book for That

Book sharing circles are the best. 90 seconds. Two books. Pass them on. We have 3 circles at a time going on like this every Wednesday morning.

There's a Book for That Book Sharing Circles

And then we share our might be favourites.

There's a Book for That

We have continued to read #MockCaldecott titles for #classroombookaday

Mock Caldecott titles IMWAYR

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 novels. Follow the links to read about all of the amazing books the #IMWAYR community has read. It’s the best way to discover what to read next.


On the blog:

Gift Books: 25 picture books to give this season

Gift Books 2015

Books I loved:

Bird by Beatriz Martin Vidal

This is a wordless wow and then some. Absolutely beautiful. I don’t even want to write anything to spoil the experience. This is a book to sit with and savour.


What Forest Knows written by George Ella Lyon and illustrated by August Hall

Ah. This book is meant for me. The forest is my favourite place. With lyrical language, with wanderings through season, travelling through trees, just beautiful. Captures the mysteries and the wonder of the forest.

What Forest Knows

The Goodbye Book by Todd Parr

Yes. This book. It hits everything about grief in the most true and genuine ways. Todd Parr, I am impressed.

The Goodbye Book

A Chicken Followed me Home! by Robin Page

Fantastic nonfiction title to explore the lifecycle of a chicken. Will be using in January with my class. Great for a primary classroom!

A Chicken Followed Me Home

I Don’t Like Snakes by Nicola Davies and illustrated by Luciano Lozano

So wonderfully clever! Numerous snake facts interspersed with the story of a little girl who wants you to know that she REALLY does not like snakes. Snakes are slithery, slimy, with eyes that hold you in a stare. Or is there more to these creatures? LOVE these illustrations by Lozano!

I Don't Like Snakes

Out of the Woods: A True Story of an Unforgettable Event by Rebecca Bond

Based on a true story, this title goes back to Ontario forests of 1914. It is a memory, a story. And what a story. How incredible to think about this experience where a fire caused humans and animals to connect in an incredibly quiet, necessary way. The illustrations here are stunning. I read this book just this weekend and placed it on my gift book list for 2015. It captures a powerful story in its 32 pages. History. Nostalgia. Amazing.

Out of the Woods

How to Read a Story by Kate Messner and illustrated by Mark Siegel

So, this is the best “how to” book ever. Enough said.

How to Read a Story

Job Wanted written by Teresa Bateman and illustrated by Chris Sheban

Absolutely charming. Persistence. Creativity. Diligence. You need to meet this dog.

Job Wanted

Winter’s Child written by Angela McAllister and illustrated by Grahame Baker Smith

This book arrived in my room via a guest reader. The children were fascinated by the fantastical storyline of Winter’s child preventing Spring from arriving because he wants to play with a human boy. Some gorgeous illustrations.

Winter's Child

The Seventh Most Important Thing by Shelley Pearsall

From the first line, I was hooked. This novel explores grief, loyalty, redemption and friendships. I loved Arthur. I loved his vulnerability, his mistakes, his raw emotions. This is a beautiful book with numerous surprises. Hope it begins to get lots of buzz. It is a book to seek out.

The Seventh Most Important Thing

Up next? My #MustReadin2015 list is calling and I have started with The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp by Kathi Appelt in the attempt to get the last eight titles read before 2016 rolls in. Stranger things have happened . . .

Updates on my 2015 Reading Goals:

2015 Chapter Book Challenge: 63/80 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 424/415 books read COMPLETE! 

#MustReadin2015: 16/24 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 74/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2015: 48/50 books read

24 thoughts on “Monday December 14th, 2015

  1. I adored The Seventh Most Important Thing last month. Like you said, the raw emotion was so powerful and the character development was so well done. Glad you enjoyed it!

  2. I liked A Chicken Followed Me Home a lot, thought it integrated the information in so well. Will look for Winter’s Child, Carrie. Love the pictures, and that idea of a sharing circle. Looks like fun!

  3. I was a huge fan of True Blue Scouts, even though it has everything I normally hate in a book. I just bought Most Important Thing but don’t know that I’ll get to it before the end of the year. I have huge, huge piles from the library right now–all books I’m so eager to read–so books I own may have to wait. I want to buy all of these picture books! Publishing companies should seriously pay you, because no reviews are ever as persuasive to me as yours–and I have a feeling that many of your readers feel the same way! Love the book sharing circle. Will try that in my Children’s Lit class next semester for sure. Planning to revamp that course yet again. What I love about teaching and what’s frustrating about it–never getting it quite right!

    • I NEVER have it right! And have never revamped as often as this fall! Thank you many times over for the lovely compliment about my persuasive reviews. I do have some serious picture book love happening at most moments!

  4. Once again, you have a pile of books that I can’t wait to dive into! I’ve read A Chicken Followed Me Home and thought that was a lot of fun. It’s a good thing I’ll have some time during the Holiday Break to get caught up on some reading. Have a terrific week!

  5. What Forest Knows looks so good! I love George Ella’s Where I’m From poem and use it as a mentor text. Also, so cool to have sharing circles weekly. Whenever I get several new books in, I host Book Speed Dating for my grade sevens, but I like that you commit to it more regularly.

    • The sharing circles are really special. This group needs to learn to slow down and appreciate the picture walk experience and also, needs exposure to a vast variety of titles so often is key! Isn’t George Ella Lyon incredible?

  6. The cover of Bird is so intriguing! I loved your gift list, too. Last Stop on Market Street is a great pick! I put The Whisper on Henry’s gift wish list after seeing it at a book fair. It is so lovely. You did a great job with the list. I’ll be sharing it with others. 🙂

    • Thanks Ricki! I read The Whisper with my class today and they basically wanted to crawl into the illustrations. Such a special book! I will say that my least favourite illustration in Bird is the cover which gives you an indication about how great it is!

  7. We love the way your students are gathered at the rug looking at all of the books together. Your photos show how much your students love reading. Can you say more about the dots over the Caldecott books – Looks like an interesting way for students to cast votes.

    • Every week I have the students vote for our #classroombookaday titles (the past 2 weeks they happen to be Caldecott books that we will vote on this week) They wither write on a piece of paper or do a longer entry in their Reader Response book and we place the magnetic dots up as a visual. When we are pressed for time, we just give them a magnet and let them vote but then peer pressure takes over!

  8. I pinned Bird because I just know I have to find that one soonest (we don’t have it yet in our libraries) and I already reserved Winter’s Child and just borrowed How To Read a Book from the library – so many great titles here, as per usual, dearest Carrie! 🙂

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