Monday May 22nd, 2017

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Each week I share a  reading photo of the week.  Or two 🙂

These two are pointing out that we just have the first six titles in this series and . . . don’t I feel like doing a little book shopping? Because there are more titles . . . Hint. Hint. How can I resist?

#IMWAYR

Kids and books are everywhere during buddy reading!

#IMWAYR

#classroombookaday photo We have been travelling the world learning about biomes, ecosystems, evolution, endangered animals, etc. Love nonfiction books!

#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.

IMWAYR 2015

Books I enjoyed:

The Red Bicycle: The Extraordinary Story of One Ordinary Bicycle written by Jude Isabella and illustrated by Simone Shin

This Citizen Kid title would make an excellent read aloud in the classroom. One very special bicycle makes its way from North America to West Africa.

Melvis and Elvis written by Dennis Lee and illustrated by Jeremy Tankard

My children were raised on Dennis Lee! I love sharing his work in the classroom too and this title will find a spot next to all of our other Dennis Lee titles in the poetry section on our shelves. Lots of silly here!

The Case of the Stinky Stench written by Josh Funk and illustrated by Brendan Kearney

Another full out fridge adventure. Some suspicious stenches accompany Josh Funk’s delightful rhyming text. Another winner!

My Canada: An Illustrated Atlas by Katherine Dearlove and illustrated by Lori Joy Smith

Can’t wait to share this one in my classroom. Perfect title for students to navigate.

Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly

This might be my favourite title so far by Kelly. Four main characters and some delightful supporting roles (love Virgil’s Lola). Unique characters here. Individual. Lonely. Determined. A highly, highly recommended middle grade read.

Reading Progress updates:

2017 Chapter Book Challenge: 26/75 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 129/365 books read

Progress on challenge: 11 books behind schedule

#MustReadin2017: 15/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 21/50 titles

Diverse Books in 2016: 20/50 books read

Up next? I have a few titles on the go including Blooming at the Texas Sunrise Motel by Kimberly Willis Holt and See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng

Monday September 5th, 2016

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Each week I share a reading photo of the week. During the summer, these photos will be about getting my classroom library up and running for a room full of readers in September.

Still adding to the shelves. More titles have since been labelled and are out on the shelves. I will be bringing in some more titles once I have a better sense of who my students are as readers. And I meet them (finally) this week!

Monday September 5th, 2016

I was away last week on Vancouver Island and did lots of great reading and lots of fantastic walks and hikes with my family.  A few pictures below.

Monday September 5th, 2016 Monday September 5th, 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.

IMWAYR 2015

On the blog:

We updated our #MustReadin2016 lists. Here is mine

For #nfpb2016: First Read Alouds in a Grade 4 & 5 classroom

Books I enjoyed:

Bring Me a Rock by Daniel Miyares

I so love Miyares’ illustrations. The expressions on the faces of these insects! Rich material here to talk about power, community and contributions.

Bring Me a Rock

Wolf Camp by Andrea Zuill

One little dog with wolfish aspirations heads to camp to be transformed.

Wolf Camp

Monsters Go Night-Night by Aaron Zenz

Oh this is the perfect gift for little ones – bed time is a big event! It is super cute. I read this in the bookstore and there was a toddler there with his grandmother. I kind of wanted to ask if I could read it aloud to him. I think it would have been a big hit.

Monsters Go Night-Night

Inspector Flytrap #1 by Tom Angleberger and Cece Bell

Seriously silly and spirited. Part of a new series about A Venus flytrap whois a detective. He solves BIG DEAL mysteries with the help of Nina the Goat, his assistant. An illustrated chapter book.

Inspector Flytrap #1

Stinky Cecil in Operation Pond Rescue by Paige Braddock

Cecil is a toad who utilizes his stink power when necessary. Can he and his friends save their pond from development? I bought this one for my new class.

Stinky Cecil in Operation Pond Rescue2

The Land of Forgotten Girls by Erin Entrada Kelly

Soledad lives with her little sister Ming and their nasty step-mother in a run down apartment in small town Louisiana. Life is nothing like it was in the Philippines. The girls miss their father who went back to the Philippines and has never returned. They mourn their mother and sister who have passed away. They manage their grief over what they have lost and their anger over their present circumstances in a variety of ways. Both rely heavily on imagination and pieces of the stories that their mother once gave them. A story of family and new lives. A fantastic main character.

the-land-of-forgotten-girls-erin-entrada-kelly

Counting Thyme by Melanie Conklin

Reading a book like this reminds me that books like this are my kind of books. Achy and real. Books that squeeze my heart. Characters I want to know. An emotional ride. A beautiful, teary emotional ride. But full of hope, not sad. At least not too much sad. The hope wins.

Counting Thyme

How to Speak Dolphin by Ginny Rorby 

Whoa this book. Lily has lost her mother. She lives with her step father and her little brother Adam. Adam has autism and while his father can’t face the reality of Adam’s needs and struggles, Lily is fully entrenched in the day-to-day care of Adam. This story tackles many themes – family, friendships, animal rights and boundaries. An excellent middle grade novel.

How to Speak Dolphin

Reading Progress updates:

2016 Chapter Book Challenge: 37/75 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 241/400 books read

#MustReadin2016: 20/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 32/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2016: 30/50 books read

Up next? I am reading The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature

It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday, a meme created by The Broke and Bookish.

TTT

This week’s topic? Top Ten Books That Would Be On Your Syllabus If You Taught X 101

Friendships in MG Fiction 101 Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

I chose Friendships in MG Literature and focused in particular on friendships between male and female characters. Friendship dynamics are frequently explored in middle grade novels. Pre-teen and teen readers are all about looking outward, beginning to rely heavily on their peers and attempting to navigate the complexities of friendship dynamics. It’s developmental. It’s difficult. Mistakes are often made. What better way to develop a deeper understanding of friendships than in the pages of a book? I think these titles in particular feature wonderful relationships based on respect, acceptance, support and kindness. The friendships are not always perfect but these novels are perfectly suited to learning all about what it is to be a good friend.

Friendships worth reading about:

Chirp and Joey in Nest by Esther Erlich

Nest Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Ivy and Paul in The Great Good Summer by Liz Garton Scanlon

The Great Good Summer Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Albert and Ally in Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

Fish In A Tree Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Felicity and Jonah in A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd

a snicker of magic Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Circa and Miles in Circa Now by Amber McRee Turner

circa now Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Peter and Annie in Wish Girl written by Nikki Loftin

Wish Girl Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Apple and Evan in Blackbird Fly by Erin Entrada Kelly

Blackbird Fly Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Will and Maren in The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel

The Boundless Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

 Mo and Dale in The Ghosts of Tupelo Landing by Sheila Turnage

Ghosts of Tupelo Landing Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Sophie and Matteo in Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell

Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Can you think of another friendship pair that could be added to this list?

Well, I have done some more reading and I can!

Wren and Theo in Be Light Like a Bird by Monika Schröder

Azalea and Billy in Making Friends with Billy Wong by Augusta Scattergood

 Making Friends with Billy Wong Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Cedar and Leo in Summerlost by Ally Condie

Summerlost Top Ten Tuesday: Titles that feature wonderful friendships in MG literature There's a Book for That

Must Read in 2015: Summer Update

Summer reading is here! How have you been doing on your #MustReadin2015 list? Progress? Ready to dive back in this summer? it’s time to share!

Must Read 2015 logo

My #MustReadin2015 list has 24 titles on it and I have completed twelve. Exactly half and a summer of reading ahead! Numerous titles on my list are currently packed with me on a trip where I plan to read a lot! So I am hoping to complete two or three more titles from my list this week.

Sometimes I look at this list and worry that I won’t get to these titles but honestly, every time I complete a novel from this list I revisit my original reasons for including it back in December and am so glad these titles on my TBR list have that special Must Read status!

The novels I have read since our spring update:

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby 

There is reason for all of the raving about this YA title. The characters are so very unique – different, mysterious but so very appealing. The story is full of intrigue, suspense, mystery and magic. It is haunting and sad yet full of hope and transformation. It is one of those books that must be experienced and the less you read about it in advance, the better because each surprise, each “around the corner” is so delicious.

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby Must Read in 2015 Summer Update There's a Book for That

Jack by Liesl Shurtliff

We finished this book on the very last day of school. The best response, “This book was so perfect because it had more than one happy ending!” We loved how Jack tied to Rump in such unexpected ways. Another fantastic read aloud by Shurtliff! Can’t wait for Red!

Jack by Liesl Shurtliff Must Read in 2015 Summer Update There's a Book for That

The Meaning of Maggie by Megan Jean Sovern

Whoa Maggie. What a girl you are. Voice bellows from the pages. What a family. So much that is challenging. Not much that is perfect. So very endearing. A fantastic book about family.

The Meaning of Maggie by Megan Jean Sovern  Must Read in 2015 Summer Update There's a Book for That

Blackbird Fly by Erin Entrada Kelly

Early on I wasn’t so sure about this novel. There was nasty middle grade interactions that made me absolutely cringe. Cruelty, insensitivity, racism. Miserable stuff. But midway through, I began to love the friendship developing between Apple and Evan. Evan is a kid I wish existed in every school – so many young people need him to help navigate the social world that can be so cruel. He approaches it with wise perspective and personal strength. He’s just plain smart and really right on so many levels. I look forward to more books from this debut author.

Blackbird Fly

The Shadowhand Convenant by Brian Farrey

I read this title aloud to my children. We read the first in the trilogy about a year ago and were completely captured by these unique characters in such a fresh fantasy story. This story continued to keep us guessing right until the last pages.

Shadowhand Covenant Monday May18th, 2015 There's a Book for That

If you have been participating in #MustReadin2015 and written an update post, please share using the #MustReadin2015 hashtag!

Want to know more about #MustReadin2015? Read here This post also includes links to all of the bloggers who wrote Must Read in 2015 lists.

And now for a confession and an apology.

Confession: I have messed up a little with these update dates. Originally, I had planned 3 updates and somehow, I looked at 2014’s schedule and got back to four updates. Call it over eager. Mostly, it is about busy and not checking carefully and actually creating more posts not less! So I apologize if you weren’t planning to update until September. I will still host an update as originally planned on September 3rd. As always, update posts are purely optional – it is fun to see how people are doing with their lists and what books they are loving. Join in if you would like 🙂

Apology: I can’t create a link up for leaving post links below as I am away and staying at a hotel with terrible internet access that keeps kicking me off. Thankfully I had prewritten most of this post earlier! Please leave links below in the comment section

Happy Reading to everyone! Crossing titles off a list or making choices as the mood hits – it’s all reading! Enjoy!

 

 

 

Monday June 1st, 2015

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

I have been sharing a reading photo of the week each week.  I love this photo of my student reading to his little K buddy. They were sitting in amongst books behind a bookshelf reading together. Calm, content, engaged. I love this photo 🙂

Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

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.

imwayrYard Sale written by Eve Bunting and illustrated by Lauren Castillo

When I first heard about this book, I was so very excited. So many of my all time favourite picture books have been written by Eve Bunting. So many of the books I have loved lately have been illustrated by Lauren Castillo. A book with their combined talents? What could be better? Well, that is a loaded question. Certainly, not much could be better. But, I should have anticipated that this amazing talent combined would also mean a whole lot of emotion captured in a picture book experience. Eve Bunting tells such important and raw stories. Lauren Castillo‘s illustrations have a charming, nostalgic, open feel. This book slowly, gently, beautifully delivers. It managed to knock me over by the time I reached the back cover. Full of love, connection and a child’s need for security, this is a beautiful, important book.

 Yard Sale Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

Wish by Matthew Cordell

Becoming a parent was not an easy feat for my husband and me. Infertility. Pain. Longing. All of these things were my world for four years. Finally, our second in vitro attempt was successful and now I have 12 year old twins! Honestly, reading this book made that turmoil feel like yesterday and I am teary each time I read this title. However, despite the sad emotions there is so much hope and celebration here. What a special book.

WIsh-Matthew Cordell Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

I so appreciate Matthew Cordell for capturing, so tenderly, the feeling of wishing for that very wanted child.

Water is Water written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Jason Chin

Lyrical, informative, and beautiful. This nonfiction picture book is the perfect book to launch a study of water. I think it will be one of the first books I share with my new class in the fall along with many hands on water experiments.

Water Is Water- A Book About the Water Cycle Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

Hippos are Huge! written by Jonathan London and illustrated by Matthew Trueman

I will be sharing this title along with student reviews later this week. A fantastic nonfiction picture book read aloud.

Hippos are huge! Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

Ballet Cat: The Totally Secret Secret by Bob Shea

I could rave and rave about this little gem. Suffice it to say as soon as I finished reading this title aloud, my class felt compelled to write notes to the author begging for more from Sparkles and Ballet Cat!

 Ballet Cat Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

 Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

No 1 Car Spotter by Atinuke

This illustrated chapter book is ideal for younger readers but better still I think, a perfect read aloud for a Grade 1-3 class early in the year. Much to love in this title: the unique characters, the entertaining dynamics and the beautiful setting of Africa. So very, very good.

No1_Car_Spotter Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

Blackbird Fly by Erin Entrada Kelly

Early on I wasn’t so sure about this novel. There was nasty middle grade interactions that made me absolutely cringe. Cruelty, insensitivity, racism. Miserable stuff. But midway through, I began to love the friendship developing between Apple and Evan. Evan is a kid I wish existed in every school – so many young people need him to help navigate the social world that can be so cruel. He approaches it with wise perspective and personal strength. He’s just plain smart and really right on so many levels. Lots to think about and talk about in this debut novel.

Blackbird Fly Monday June 1st, 2015 There's a Book for That

Updates on my 2015 Reading Goals:

2015 Chapter Book Challenge: 27/80 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 205/415 books read

#MustReadin2015: 11/24 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 44/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2015: 20/50 books read

Up next? I am delighted to be once again reading Deborah Wiles: Love, Ruby Lavender