This weekly post comes from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers. It's a great source to find new books to use with your students.
Last Week's Adventures
My #mustreadin2016 list and plan is set. How about yours?
This is one of the best nonfiction books as far as voice goes. How Do You Burp in Space is a great nonfiction picture book to check out!
I really enjoyed Dan Gemeinhart's new book Some Kind of Courage. Check out my review.
It's a presidential election year. Here are two new books to use with young kids!
Transitional Chapter Books
Anna, Banana and the Monkey in the Middle by Anika Mrose Rissi
I'm already a big fan of this series, but this one is my favorite so far. I love books that have plot lines about very real things. In this one, our main character, Anna, is feeling like monkey in the middle between her two best friends. Until recently, she only had one best friend. Add the third friend in the mix and things always get interesting.
This series is a wonderful one for kids in 1st-4th grade. Because of the realistic plot lines, kids can really relate. I love Meg Park's illustrations as well!
When Mischief Came to Town by Katrina Nannestad
I really enjoyed this tale, especially the main character, Inge Maria.
We meet Inge Maria as she is transitioning to a new part of her life. She has recently lost her mother and is going to live with her never-before-met grandmother. Grandmother and the other people in her town seem to be kind of like old, fuddy-duddies, and Inge Maria is an accident waiting to happen! Frequently I laughed out loud as Inge Maria got into trouble. Mischief seems to always find her, and the outcomes are often hilarious.
I think this book works better as a read aloud. I'm not sure if this book was translated, the author is from Australia, but it takes place outside of Copenhagen. The Danish names and places will be tricky for some kids. Other times the sentence structure is a bit clunky. But I really think kids will get a big kick of the hilarious things that happen to Inge Maria. She is a character that will stick!
The Terrible Two Get Worse by Jory John and Mac Barnett
I enjoyed the first Terrible Two but didn't love it. After seeing the authors together, I did get a new appreciation for it. Jory John and Mac Barnett feed off of each other, each retort funnier because of what the other had said first.
Keeping that in mind as I read, you hear their voices as you read the banter between Miles and Niles. And where the other book was just about out-pranking each other, this one has more heart behind it. As a result of their pranks, Principal Barkin has found himself out of a job. In steps his father, Former Principal Barkin. And with his entry, there are no more pranks because he has found a way to stop them. Miles and Niles have to work together and allow new ideas to form in order to restore school as they know it.
It's always interesting to read other reviews. I've seen some that talk about how the pranking gets more serious in this one because they could potentially hurt a person. My first thought is with all that is happening today, these pranks still seem pretty innocent. But then I think about how all it takes is one. Just one person to read it and get the idea. I don't know... it's an interesting debate. What do you think?
Stick Dog by Tom Watson
I'm really excited because we are so fortunate to be welcoming Tom Watson to our school next month. I'm on a Stick Dog kick and after reading this first book, I can see it won't be hard to book talk these books!
This is another series that is just perfect to read aloud. I can't wait to talk to kids about narrators, who is telling the story, how we know, how the narrator adds inner voice. And all of this while telling a story that's just silly and fun. It's books like this I love because they are just so easy to sell to kids.
Notebook Connections: Strategies for the Reader's Notebook by Aimee Bruckner
Another great book to use to add to your knowledge about Writing About Reading. I like how Bruckner scaffolds her lessons and adds to students knowledge slowly - giving them new tools and new ideas on how to respond in writing to their reading. I see how this helps make students more conscientious of their thinking and promotes deeper thinking. Looking forward to trying many ideas from this book.
Not If I See You First by Eric Lindstrom
Liking this one a lot. Good YA.
The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell
Before the Awakening by Greg Rucka
and then a pile that's never ending... so many books! Love January for that reason only!