Monday October 3rd, 2016

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Teaching in a new to me school has kept me very busy. I didn’t get to post last week so am sharing reading highlights from the past 2 weeks.

Each week I share a reading photo of the week. My students have fallen deep into the land of graphic novels. Ben Hatke‘s Little Robot is a favourite.

Monday October 3rd, 2016

This student is showing me that 2017 is not “coming soon” in terms of the next Hilo instalment. When you are an impatient fan, time moves too slowly.

Monday October 3rd, 2016We have continued to love exploring theme for our #classroombookaday titles. What theme is explored with these titles?

Monday October 3rd, 2016

And these?

Monday October 3rd, 2016

Student voice is beginning to inform our reading community. Some of the wisdom posted up through Reader’s Statements.

Monday October 3rd, 2016

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.


Books I enjoyed:

They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel

Brilliant. So rich with possibilities to share and talk about perspective, self and the world.


Sleepover with Beatrice and Bear by Mônica Carnesi

This book is just plain adorable. What do you do if your very good friend Bear hibernates and sleeps away winter?


Hiawatha and the Peacemaker by Robbie Robertson and illustrated by David Shannon

The story of the Peacemaker and his message of peace and unity for the five warring Iroquois nations during the 14th century. An important lesson about democracy.


I loved both of these Elephant & Piggie Like Reading! titles.

We are Growing! by Laurie Keller

A humorous account of grass growing.


The Cookie Fiasco by Dan Santat

Amusing. Full of cookie crumbs and math learning.


Narwhal Unicorn of the Sea by Ben Clanton

A perfect beginning graphic series: funny, amusing and wonderfully quirky.

 Narwhal Unicorn of the Sea

A Year Without Mom by Dasha Tolstikova

What a gorgeous graphic memoir. A year in the life of the author when her mother leaves her in Russia with her Grandparents to travel to America for a year. Visually stunning.


The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner

Oh, this book.Who would think that ice fishing, Irish dancing, magical elements and heroin addiction could be combined to create a story that is impossible both to put down and then to keep from immediately passing on. I have much gratitude to Kate Messner for writing this book.


Rescued by Elliot Schrefer

A hard book to read. There is so much injustice here for Raja, an orangutan brought to the states to be a pet/brother for a young boy. As time passes, it becomes even more wrong. Is there a way to make things right?


Reading Progress updates:

2016 Chapter Book Challenge: 43/75 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 262/400 books read

#MustReadin2016: 21/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 32/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2016: 31/50 books read

Up next? I am reading It Ain’t So Awful Falafel by Firoozeh Dumas

Monday September 16th, 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! The #IMWAYR crowd always has so many fantastic titles to share.

IMWAYRThe picture books I loved this week:

A Mountain of Friends written and illustrated by Kerstin Schoene

I shared this title when our K/1 reading buddies came to visit our classroom for the very first time. It was a hot and stuffy afternoon and there were 44 children ages 4 to 8 in my classroom and we survived it because of this beautiful little book. It is interactive. It is adorable. It is all about creativity and the strong will to help out a friend in need. Elements of Eric Rohmann‘s My Friend Rabbit.

A Mountain of Friends #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

Mr. Tiger Goes Wild written and illustrated by Peter Brown

I really, truly love this book. I don’t want to give anything away to spoil the experience. I can stay it is stunning. And slightly peculiar in the best of ways. And the message . . . ? Divine.

Oh and it is so beautifully illustrated, one just might swoon while reading it.

Mr Tiger goes Wild #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

Fox and Squirrel written and illustrated by Ruth Ohi

Such a wonderful little story about celebrating similarities and differences and finding common ground. A book just made for sharing with a primary classroom to talk about all of the intricacies of friendship.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

Warning: Do not Open this Book! written by Adam Lehrhaupt and illustrated by Matthew Forsythe

This story exemplifies the “pull you right into it” feeling a picture book can provide. Fun. Silly. Delightful. I can’t even imagine how much fun it would be to share this with a classroom of children. I know that my classroom of children would go crazy. I really must get my own copy of this title! I love a little crazy when it comes to picture book experiences!

Warning do not Open this Book #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

Bugs in my Hair written and illustrated by David Shannon

Well done Mr. Shannon. Being a lice expert myself (not necessarily a talent I had wanted to cultivate but . . . ), I have the feeling David Shannon has some first hand experience with these itchy little critters. Or he is a very good listener. This title both entertains and informs in the most delightful of ways. You finish it with a smile and if lice and you have been intimately acquainted, you know it is all okay in the end. Until next time . . .

Bugs in my Hair #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

Doug Unplugged written and illustrated by Dan Yaccarino

Funny how a book can surprise you. I had seen this title around the blogosphere for a while. I knew it made suggestions that we shouldn’t be so wrapped up in technology that we miss out on real life. But I was reading the title incorrectly. I read unplugged as noun instead of verb. I saw Doug Unplugged as a name, not that Doug, unplugged (verb). Reading this book made it clear very quickly and honestly, I adored this book quite a bit more than I thought I might. A great story to spark discussion about many things – the difference between “book/internet knowledge” and the power of experience for one.

Doug Unplugged #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

A is for Musk Ox written by Erin Cabatingan and illustrated by Matthew Myers

I do have quite the thing for alphabet books. Who would have thought that authors and illustrators could get so creative with the abcs? Oh, but they do! And this book certainly is an ideal example. In the same vein as Z is for Moose but wordier and for the story time crowd with a little bit more listening stamina. Great book to model voice. Or just to share countless laughs!

 A is for Musk Ox #IMWAYR There's a Book for That!

I have been happily and carefully reading Catching Readers Before They Fall by Pat Johnson and Katie Keier and so find myself at the end of a week without having completed a novel. I am one good early morning reading session away from finishing Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library (talk about fast paced!) and am still enjoying reading my children The Fire Chronicle by John Stevens (also dramatic and hard to put down!)

In my classroom, we are loving our first chapter book read aloud together (for many students this is the first time they have ever been read a chapter book) – Marty McGuire Digs Worms by Kate Messner. We have been slowly making our way through Desmond and the Very Mean Word – a picture book that your classroom or school library MUST own. This is a story that has inspired so much discussion and passionate reader responses. What a book!

I look forward to many more exciting picture books in the next week and plan to begin Jinx by Sage Blackwood.

Monday December 17th, 2012

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? Celebrate your weekly reading by joining Jen and Kellee’s meme and link up with other reading enthusiasts sharing their reads from picture books to young adult reads.

Mon Reading Button PB to YA

I enjoyed many great books during this past week and tried to fit in some last minute Nerdy Book Club nominations 🙂

Picture Books I loved:

Neville written by Norman Juster and illustrated by G. Brian Karas I read this book with my reading group and we shared questions we had before, during and after the story. An amazing book to inspire questions and discussion. A boy moves to a new town and heads out for a walk, unhappy about his move and convinced he will be friendless. When he begins to yell the name “Neville!” interesting things begin to happen. I adored this book.


Jangles, a BIG fish story by David Shannon Part folklore, part mystery, part adventure – all good 🙂 Gorgeous oil paintings give this book an eerie aura.


Rocket Writes a Story by Tad Hills I agree, of course, with many other readers that this book is an ideal story to share when highlighting the writing process. Love the little yellow bird and the big tree of inspiration.

Rocket cover

Little Owl’s Night by Divya Srinivasan Stunning art helps narrate this story of a nighttime adventure in the forest. Perfect for teaching about nocturnal animals.


Chopsticks Amy Krause Rosenthal Scott Magoon A fun story about friendship, independence and loyalty with just the right dose of humour “mixed in.”


A few holiday stories shared with my class: 

Home for Christmas by Jan Brett My students loved paying attention to the detailed illustrations for hints of what was coming up next in the story. I have many holiday books by Jan Brett on my bookshelf. Always so festive and sweet.


Just Right For Christmas by Birdie Black and Rosalind Beardshaw This book was shared in my class this week, more details here. A story with elements of Phoebe Gilman‘s Something from Nothing or Joseph Had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback. 

just right for Christmas

Some non-fiction themed books:

The Journey: Stories of Migration written by Cynthia Rylant and illustrated by Lambert Davis I have been sharing sections of this book all term with my class as we learn about migration. The illustrations were vivid and detailed and the stories very easy to follow for my Grade 2/3 students. Lots of learning!

stories of migration

A Strange Places to Call Home written by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Ed Young The pictures in this book are incredible and I really enjoyed reading more about each creature and their strange habitats at the back of the book. Did I love all of the poems? Some more than others . . .

strange place to call home

The novel I finished this week was a young adult read called Ask the Passengers by A.S. King. Great characters and beautiful writing. I quickly requested other titles by this author from the library. Astrid Jones holds her feelings and questions close as she tries to navigate small town life and big world questions with a family not really along for the ride. Everyone in her two parent, two kid family feels very much on their own and so Astrid connects with the unknown passengers on the planes that fly overhead. A story that explores love, friendship and family dynamics.

Girl lying on sand, reaching up to the sun

Little holiday reads

I purchased these books from Scholastic and shared them with my class in the last week of school. Some were quick reads, others warranted more discussion. All were enjoyed.

It’s Christmas David by David Shannon

Everyone always says No David at Christmas . . .

One can only imagine what David gets up to at Christmas! Yes it involves peeking at hidden gifts and trying to sneak off with baked treats. The favourite in our room? Well David wrote his name in the snow. It was yellow . . . Yes, yuck!

Merry Christmas, Splat by Rob Scotton

Who doesn’t love Splat the Cat?

Earlier this week we read this book and we shared our discussion in a blog post. Can Splat be too helpful? Was he really good all year? Worries keep him awake as does waiting up for a certain man in red. . .

The Greatest Snowman in the World by Peter Hannan

Did you know a chinchilla and his friends could build a snowman?

I shared this funny little book by Peter Hannan with our K-3 primary gathering. Last week of school and excitement was high but this book definitely held the attention of close to 60 kids. Lots of giggles as Charles Chinchilla, Elvis Wormly and Babs McBoid attempted to build an amazing snowman. Even as problem after problem happens, Charles remains optimistic and full of ideas. We were pretty impressed by his idea in the freezer at the end! (Hint more to do with ice cream than snow. . . )

Howard B. Wigglebottom and the Power of Giving: A Christmas Story by Howard Binkow and Susan F Cornelison

Howard learns about the power of giving.

My students always adore the character of Howard B Wigglebottom. As he learns, we learn and there is always much discussion as the story unfolds. In this story, Howard is forced to confront that his stuff brings him more harm than good. In the end, he realizes that he hasn’t valued what is most important after all – his family. My students realized that stuff made Howard lost and that family is more important than all of the toys in the world. There was sure a lot of discussion about whether or not T.V. commercials that gave you ideas for toys you wanted were a good thing or a bad thing. . . More discussion needed!