Monday, August 3, 2015

Rooftops of Tehran {Book Club}

Hello! Over the summer months, we had another book club book to read! This time it was Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji. 

I must be honest and tell you that when this book was announced as the pick I was not interested in reading it at all. But I was a good little girl and got it from the library. I attempted to start reading it but the due date came and went. I gave it a second try when Megan reminded us that the deadline for reading was coming up. I am so glad I did! I ended up REALLY enjoying this book! 

Pasha's love for Zari is thankfully nothing I have ever had to go through. 

Pasha and Ahmed are wise beyond their years as characters. Yet I love that they are still believable as teens. The author does a great job of educating the reader about the culture and history of Iran while not boring the reader or over saturating the text. 

I thought the ending of the book was very fitting for the story. Of course I would have loved a happy-go-lucky ending but that is not realistic for this story line and I love that the author stayed true to the times and culture of the book. 

After a failed first attempt, I am very glad that I went back to the book and I would definitely recommend it to others! 

Thank you Megan at Cardigans and Caffeine for another book club rotation! 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Golden Archer 2015 winners!

And the 2015 Golden Archer Award winners are...

Drew Daywalt   @DrewDaywalt

R.J. Palacio   @RJPalacio

Middle/Junior High: 
John Green   @JohnGreen
Find out more about the Golden Archer Awards by visiting WEMTA's website

Friday, February 20, 2015

Golden Archer Award 2015 - The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt

What a fabulous last book for the Golden Archer Awards! 

Our last title and activity was for Drew Daywalt's The Day the Crayons Quit

A major thing that helped me with the success of reading this book, as I was finding it was going over the heads of my first few classes, was to discuss what it means to quit before reading the book. Then as we read, I paused every few crayons and asked why did that crayon want to quit? As students summarized why that color wanted to quit, students were really connecting to the crayons and wanting Duncan to fix the problems. I highly suggest this method for reading this book! 

When we finished reading, students were asked to write a letter back to one crayon "explaining" why they did not want that crayon to quit. I used this freebie from Peace, Love, & Learning.

This student first drew this...

Then he had extra time left so I asked him to add more detail. Look how awesome his picture looks now! 

And yes, we did have the classic mis-spelling happen. I had to take this pic! 

We vote next week! I have a feeling I know which book my kids will like best but I can't wait to see for sure! 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Golden Archer Awards 2015 - That is Not a Good Idea by Mo Willems

Week four of the Golden Archer Awards! This week was SO much fun! Although, perhaps the shortest book I have ever used as a read aloud, the look on students' faces at the end of the book was priceless! 
We read Mo Willem's That is Not a Good Idea

After reading the book, we talked about all of the surprise elements and about the chicks who continue to scream, "That is not a good idea!" Students then got to do their own activity of making their own unique chick! 

The activity for That is Not a Good Idea was really a great way to let kids' creativity flow!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Golden Archer Awards 2015 - Pete the Cat and his Magic Sunglasses by James Dean

It's week three of the Golden Archer Awards! 

We read the much anticipated book Pete the Cat and his Magic Sunglasses by Kimberly and James Dean this week. Students are very familiar with Pete the Cat so they couldn't wait to hear this story. My perception was that they were not as impressed as they thought they would be but they did still like the story. 

After reading this one, we made our own magic sunglasses! I used this fabulous template from Picklebums.

Check out these cool cats! 

On to book four! 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Golden Archer Awards 2015 - The Dark by Lemony Snicket

Reading the Golden Archer Awards books to my students is so much fun! 

This week we read The Dark by Lemony Snicket. As a first soiree into picture books, he did a fabulous job. I mean, how could you go wrong with Jon Klassen as your illustrator?! 

After reading the book, students were asked to draw something they were afraid of. We then added the dark to it by putting a black piece of construction paper over the drawing. Then we got brave like Laszlo and took out our flashlights, i.e. cut a triangle shaped hold into our dark. Things are never as scary when you can see them! 

This student was afraid of Bigfoot. I love the perspective he drew his picture from! 

Add your light and it's not nearly as scary as it was in the dark!

 I had to include this amazing shark picture for you to see as well! 

The kids really liked sharing their fears and making them not so scary! 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Golden Archer Awards 2015 - Oh No! by Candace Fleming

Hello! It is time for the 2015 Golden Archer Awards

Kindergarten through second grade students are taking part in this statewide program that awards one exemplary picture book this award. The award is specific to Wisconsin and the book that wins it is selected by students around the state. We will read the five nominated titles during the coming weeks. Each student will cast a vote for their favorite book and those votes will be sent on to the committee. The Golden Archer Award is sponsored by the Wisconsin Educational Media and Technology Association. The Award winner will be announced at the annual WEMTA conference in late March. 

The primary level nominees are: 

This first week, I read Oh, No! by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann to my classes. (Side note: Did you know they are married? My kids loved hearing that. :) ) 

We read the story first. I had students participate by saying the animal sounds and the "Oh, no!"s. Then we re-enacted the story using animal masks. The kids had a ton of fun with this! They can't wait until next week for story number 2! 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Books worth melting for

My versions of an Olaf bulletin board I saw on Pinterest...

You'll find him at Lincoln...

And him at Parkview!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Sunday Scoop time!

It's been awhile since I've done a Sunday Scoop with Teaching Trio so here we go! 

Have to do...
It's Golden Archer Award time in Wisconsin! I begin my six week unit on it this Friday with the first group so I have to decide which of the five nominated titles I am going to read first and then what activity I am going to do. This is probably my most favorite time of the year in the library! 
WEMTA is our state library and technology association and registration just opened for the annual Spring conference. The sooner you register the cheaper it is! You should check it out - it is definitely worth attending!! 

Hope to do...
I recently created a research organizer for second grade space research and I hope to get it posted to TPT ASAP! 
Also, the littlest is changing sizes yet again so I need to get the too small out and the next size in! 

Happy to do...
I'm trying to read a bunch of the historical fiction that is on our 4th grade list as the unit is fast approaching. Our Only May Amelia by Jennifer L. Holm is my current read and I am almost done. It's pretty good but I feel that the fourth graders will miss a bunch of things in the text. However, because they are more the character's age, I also believe that they will really enjoy it and hopefully it gets them a bit emotional as it is a very emotionally charged book! 

I hope you have a great week! 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Book Club Beauties - The One and Only

Hello! The Book Club Beauties recently completed our second book club book, The One and Only by Emily Griffin. Here are my thoughts:

A few notes...
I loved Neil because he is the quintessential husband - tries to leave the room, responds only when directly spoken to, etc. His character really made me smile to see such a "normal" secondary character.

I really enjoyed this book up until about 3/4 of the way through. Then the unsettling feeling of a young girl falling in love with someone who is basically her father took over. I couldn't make that right in my mind. Perhaps if that is what Griffin was going for, then this book is a success for her. For me, though, it is not.

I love being a part of Book Club Beauties with Cardigans and Caffeine! Head over to her blog if you are interested in joining us!