Thursday, October 8, 2015

New Books

It is hard to describe the feeling I get when a new shipment of books arrives.  I feel my heart rate increasing.  I feel excitement.  I feel joy.  This is one of the greatest pleasures of being a school librarian.  I think of how excited the kids will be to see certain titles.  I mentally match certain kids and teachers with certain books.  I plan read-alouds and booktalks.

I remember why I love my job.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Informational Nonfiction for Kindergarteners

New Nonfiction

A lot of childrens book publishers are coming out with beautiful new nonfiction informational books related to the Common Core standards.  One of my, and my Kindergarten teachers'  favorites, are the Bullfrog Books imprint, published by Jump!

Everyone who sees these books wants to pick them up and look at them.  The photographs are beautiful.  The text is clear and accessible to beginner readers.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Great Read-aloud Biographies

Biographies can be extremely powerful read-alouds, as well as a segue into non-fiction.  Here are some of my all-time favorite picture book read-aloud biographies

Wilma Unlimited by Kathleen Krull

I read it with a class of second-graders and you could have heard a pin drop as they listened.  The best part about biographies is that I can then use the power of technology to bring this great woman alive.  Here are two Youtube videos that are fabulous to show kids after reading the book:

Stories of olympic athletes overcoming great odds always make good reading.   Sixteen Years in Sixteen Seconds: The Sammy Lee story, By Paula Yoo and Dom Lee is no exception,
especially when paired with the following footage from the 1948 and 1952 Olympics: (Sammy is about at 2:35)

A Splash of Red: The life and Art of Horace Pippin by Melissa Sweet

is a fantastic story of the self-taught artist, and can be paired with this profile from the online Museum Syndicate website

 that has photographs of Pippin as well as images of his work.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Oldies but Goodies

There are some books that stand the test of time, over and over again.  They are as popular today as when they were published.  I know this because I see how popular they are with the kids in my library.  Harold and the Purple Crayon  by Crockett Johnson is one of them.
This  story of a little boy who creates an entire world, and goes on an adventure, using just his purple crayon, appeals to readers of all ages.

The 2014 picture book Journey by Aaron Becker, in which a girl goes on a magical journey with a red crayon seems to be an homage to Harold.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

My all time favorite "easy reader" books

I am going to babysit for my four year-old nephew tonight, and I am bringing some of my favorite books with me.

First, Go Dog Go by P.D. Eastman.  This is one of my favorite books ever.  This book taught me to read.  I read it again and again and again when I was learning.  I can still recite parts of it by heart.
I remember loving all the funny-looking dogs, and looking through the book to find them again and again, and, of course, the dog with the crazy hat, who asks again and again, "do you like my hat?"

I am also bringing a stack of Mo Willem's Elephant and Piggie books with me.  My nephew loves We are in a Book, and I am looking forward to sharing more.  Mo Willems is a genius.