Monday March 23rd, 2015

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

I have been sharing a reading photo of the week each week. It is Spring Break so I haven’t been teaching this week. But in anticipation of being back in the classroom with students today, I am sharing a  photo from this time last year. This is at the book selecting table during buddy reading. I love all of the book love that happens at this time 🙂

Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR 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.


Some picture books I enjoyed this week:

The Pet Project Cute and Cuddly Vicious Verses written by Lisa Wheeler and illustrated by Zachoriah Ohora

I don’t know how I missed this book published in 2013- it is hilarious and an amazing text to inspire some fun poetry writing. Thinking it would be great to pair with titles like Prudence wants a Pet and A Pet for Petunia to have students examine all of the ways children ask for pets. Sometimes, as this title reveals, they come to their own decisions about just how wonderful (or not) a particular pet might be. Both poems and illustrations are awesome in this book.

The Pet Project Cute and Cuddly Vicious Verses Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt written by Kate Messner and illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal

Yes, just as amazingl as I imagined it would be. With all of the gardening I have been doing this week, this title was perfect. Simply gorgeous illustrations. I really liked the intergenerational connections and time spent across seasons. Great additional information about various creatures in the back of the book.

Up in the Garden Down in the Dirt Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Home by Carson Ellis

So very beautiful. And of course, I instantly think art and writing and what will this inspire. A treasure that I had to buy. A must own.

Home Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

I Had a Favourite Hat written by Boni Ashburn and illustrated by Robyn Ng

Cute little book about expressing one’s self through various seasons and for various reasons. One hat can be so many things . . .

I Had a Favourite Hat Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

The Spider by Elise Gravel

I know my class will be “crawling” over each other to get at this latest Gravel title!

The-Spider Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Head Lice by Elise Gravel

Oh, head lice, how we don’t love thee! But this book lets us grin about a pretty constant annoyance. So, we’ll take it!

Head Lice Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Hands & Hearts with 15 words in American Sign Language written by Donna Jo Napoli and illustrated by Amy Bates

Lyrical text. A wonderful day between mother and daughter.

Hands and Hearts Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

My plan was to get many more novels read but our house has been bit by the spring cleaning bug and we are clearing out the basement and weeding the garden and my reading time was eaten up . . . I did organize some book shelves though and redid my TBR stacks so here’s to the upcoming books!

I did finish Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms by Katherine Rundell.

This title was just published in North America in the fall of 2014 but was first published in 2011 under the title The Girl Savage and was actually Rundell’s first book. My daughter and I each read this book this week and had similar reactions to specific characters. We loved Will’s spirit and rooted for her throughout the book.

 Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms Monday March 23rd, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Updates on my 2015 Reading Goals:

2015 Chapter Book Challenge: 14/80 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 110/415 books read

#MustReadin2015: 7/24 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 25/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2015: 12/50 books read

Up next? I am almost finished We Were Here by Matt de la Peña and will then start All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven. We have a family listen aloud happening right now –  Doll Bones by Holly Black. I have read the book in the past but it sure is fun experiencing it with my family! I love how there is always somebody claiming, “This isn’t scary.” Which usually means we have just heard a particularly creepy part!

Monday April 28th, 2014

It’s Monday! What are you reading?


Because last Monday I was away (and technology free) reading and walking the beach with my family, I am sharing two weeks of reading in this post. Warning: it’s a little long!

#IMWAYR 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. The best way to grow your TBR list!

I read some fantastic picture books, both fiction and nonfiction. Here are my favourites:

Nassredine written by Odile Weulersse and illustrated by Rébecca Dautremer

What an important story to share with children to illustrate so perfectly the message that we can’t please everyone and in fact, there is often someone, no matter what, who will be critical of what we do. So much to this story: patience of a wise father, sensitivity in young Nasreddine and the gossipy judgement of “others.” Even though this tale is set in another place and time, it is very relevant to children today. The illustrations are absolutely stunning.

Nasreddine #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

The Mermaid and the Shoe by K. G. Campbell

Enter the beautiful undersea world of little Minnow, one of King Neptune’s fifty daughters. Minnow, unlike her sisters, seems not to have a special gift or talent.  But her persistence and curiosity allow her to discover the story behind the strange and wonderful object that she found and to share it with all who want to find out more. A longer story, perfect for children who love fairy tales and fantasy elements.

The Mermaid and the Shoe #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Orani My Father’s Village by Claire A. Nivola 

This beautiful book tells the story of Nivola’s visits to Orani, the tiny Sardinian village where her father was born. A special place – full of memories, community, simplicity. A gorgeous celebration of family history. The author’s note in the back is well worth reading.

Orani #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Highest Number in the World written by Roy MacGregor and illustrated by Geneviève Després

One of my students says it best: “This is a really good book because Gabe’s grandmother saved the day. She did this by convincing Gabe that she was lucky.” Hockey, wise grandmothers and sports heroes. Quite the book. My students have written reviews of this title that I hope to blog soon. It was very popular with boys and girls alike but I really liked that our little hockey loving heroine was a girl!

 the highest number in the world Roy MacGregor

Flight of the HoneyBee by Raymond Huber and illustrated by Brian Lovelock

A fantastic introduction to bees – told as one scout’s story. The pages are incredibly illustrated – the bees look like they are dusted in gold dust. Learn about pollination, how bees dance, life in the hive, etc. Gorgeous nonfiction title for the elementary classroom.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Big Blue Whale written by Nicola Davies and illustrated by Nick Maland

All about the blue whale. As always, Nicola Davies manages to deliver a lot of information in such lyrical text. The illustrations by Maland are really interesting and add to the feel of the book. Such majestic creatures, blue whales.

big blue whale #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Jazz Baby written by Lisa Wheeler and illustrated by R Gregory Christie

What fun this would be to read aloud with little ones. Music sings out via the rhythm of the words. Energy, movement, fun!

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Dog Loves Counting by Louise Yates

Just so much fun. Help a little dog who can’t sleep count things – like three toed sloths and five-lined skinks and the seven stripes on the racoon’s tail. Playful, clever and sweet. Would make a very interactive story time for little ones or be the perfect book for buddy reading with Kindergartens.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Guinea Dog by Patrick Jennings (young MG)

One of the most entertaining “wants a dog, parent says no” books out there. And Fido is certainly some pet. Hilarious. Spirited. Perfect for those students ready to handle longer chapter books. I am reading this with my Jr. Book Club (Grades 2 and 3).

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

With a Name Like Love by Tess Hilmo (MG)

I read this book in one early morning sitting with some strong coffee and lots of tears. It has so much that I love – true humanity, history, truth and sentimental simplicity. Not is any sappy or overly dramatic way. Just a true story told. Good people are sometimes hard to find. This book has a collection

with a name like love #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Threatened by Eliot Schrefer (YA)

Wow. Hard to find words to describe the intensity and interesting aspects of this story. Set in the jungles of Gabon, this novel is about a boy and his relationships with chimpanzees. No doubt, there are messages of conservation that come through loud and clear. But this book is also about being alone, finding connection, chasing dreams and finding home. Days after I finished reading this book, I wanted a chance just to peek again at the characters – human and chimp to see how they were faring. It was that real to me.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Golden by Jessi Kirby (YA)

I often see books categorized as a “coming of age” story and this truly is that. What is it like to be on the brink of your future? How do our choices define what lies ahead and how connected are we to where we come from? This book has a lot to it – mystery, soul searching, family and friendship connections. Much of it bittersweet.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets by Evan Roskos (YA)

An interesting title – one that deals with mental health issues, abusive families and an amusing look at teenage life. More about character than plot. The search for self and meaning through the muddy waters of family dysfunction and depression. Complex. Painful. Well done.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

The Absolutely True Story of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie (YA)

This book has been sitting on my shelf for ages and so I put it on my #MustReadin2014 list. What took me so long to pick it up? It was all kinds of amazing. I loved pretty much everything about it. The characters. The honesty and vulnerability of the narrator. The family dynamics. The truths. The humour. Wow, wow, wow. READ this book, if you haven’t already!

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Countdown by Deborah Wiles (MG)

I am more and more impressed with Wiles with every title I read. This is the first novel in her Sixties trilogy and it is fantastic. It is everything a middle grade novel should be. Preteen  everyday issues (family and friendship drama) in the context of this time in history – the Cuban Missile Crisis. So well written and full of nonfiction elements – songs, ads, headlines, photographs. The reader steps right into the life and times of these characters and lives their fear over world events and conflict. Highly recommended. My eleven year old daughter is now reading this book.

#IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Next up? I continue reading Jinx’s Magic by Sage Blackwood to my own children. I am starting All That’s Missing by Sarah Sullivan and have a number of nonfiction titles I picked up from the library that I’m eager to read.

Reading Goal updates:

2014 Chapter Book Challenge: 35/100 novels complete

Goodeads Challenge: 213/650 books read

#MustReadin2014: 15/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 56/65 complete