Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday - what's in my nonfiction stack? 10.30.19

Wednesdays I join Alyson Beecher from kidlitfrenzy and other
#kidlit bloggers to share wonderful nonfiction picture books.
The intention of today's blog post is to give professionals that work in the
education field new nonfiction reading material and ideas to use 
with students to promote a love of reading nonfiction materials.

Here's what popped out from my nonfiction picture book stack!

The Boy Who Grew a Forest by Sophia Gholz
The Boy Who Grew a Forest: The True Story of Jadav Payeng
written by Sophia Gholz
illustrated by Kayla Harren
This narrative gives us the basic facts of the boy who planted the seeds and sowed the land until a barren field grew into a large forest.  Young readers will understand the theme of the story and will visually see the impact Payeng has on the land.
The illustrations by Harren are gorgeous.  The soft, earthy tones are simply beautiful.
The story is simple, yet effective.  There is some additional information in the backmatter.  
This is a good book to read when you want to show kids they can make a difference, or perhaps for Earth Day, or to show character traits!

Seeds Move! by Robin Page
Seeds Move!
by Robin Page
Pair with Dianna Aston's A Seed is Sleepy book - discover all the ways a seed finds a spot and puts down roots!

Just Like Beverly by Vicki Conrad
Just Like Beverly
written by Vicki Conrad
illustrated by David Hohn
For anyone who has read a Beverly Cleary book, you'll see so much inspiration that came from Beverly's own life in her books.  While some of the words and activities age Cleary's books for today's readers, the character traits and themes still ring true.  I really enjoyed reading this one and it would make a great follow up after reading a Beverly Cleary book with students! 
Don't miss the backmatter where the author included a lot more information about Beverly's life.

Beware of the Crocodile by Martin Jenkins
Beware of the Crocodile
written by Martin Jenkins
illustrated by Satoshi Kitamura
A book that goes for the shock value - you won't believe some of the eating habits of crocodiles!  
Most of the information is carried through the main text, but there is additional information in smaller print on some of the pages.  Backmatter including an index, which isn't as widely found as it used to be!

We are starting a nonfiction cycle at school.  I'll definitely be adding some of these titles to our read aloud rotation!

Monday, October 28, 2019

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 10.28.19

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

Looking for some nonfiction picture books to use for #classroombookaday?  Here are some ideas!

Books for readers who are starting their independent reading journey here.

Picture Books

written by Lupita Nyong'o
illustrated by Vashti Harrison
This book is so beautiful - inside and out!  
You never know how a book is going to go when it's written by a famous actor.  This one, feels real and authentic.  
The illustrations, oh, put this on your Mock Caldecott list.  I've long admired Vashti Harrison's work, but I really do mean it when I say this one is her best.  Just beautiful.

Parker Looks Up: An Extraordinary Moment
Parker Looks Up
written by Parker and Jessica Curry
illustrated by Brittany Jackson
A picture book that brings to life the moment of a young African American girl who is mesmerized by the portrait of Michelle Obama, hanging in the National Portrait Gallery.
I wish they had put the original photo in the backmatter.

Cece Loves Science     Cece Loves Science and Adventure (Cece Loves Science, #2)
Cece Loves Science
Cece Loves Science and Adventure
written by Kimberly Derting and Shelli R. Johannes
illustrated by Vashti Harrison
It's a Vashti Harrison illustrated books kind of reading week!
This series is really fun and great for science, STEM (and it could have been STEAM), and girls in science!  Perfect to use at the beginning of the school year, or anytime!

The Hundred-Year Barn
The Hundred-Year Barn
written by Patricia MacLachlan
illustrated by Kenard Pak
A story that slowly unfolds, doesn't have a sweeping plot, but lyrical language that still takes you on a journey - yes, you are reading a Patricia MacLachlan story!
This book stands out for setting - one to use to talk about why it is important, the impact on the story.

Image result for intersection allies
Intersection Allies: we make room for all
written by Chelsea Johnson, LaToya Council, and Carolyn Choi
illustrated by Ashley Seil Smith
A good book to use when talking about what being an ally means and how it looks.  While at times it strays on the verge of being too didactic, it's such a big concept for young readers that I think at times it has to stay preachy and to the point.  I loved that there are teaching and conversation ideas for every single page in the back of the book.  

From the Heart of Africa: A Book of Wisdom
From the Heart of Africa: A Book of Wisdom
collected by Eric Walters
artwork by various illustrators
A book of aphorisms, words of wisdom.
I can see these quick statements being used to write longer off of - kids need practice expanding their thinking.  These would be great.  Could use alongside Mr. Browne's precepts!

Small in the City
Small in the City
by Sydney Smith
Great Aha Moment in this book!  The book took on a whole different meaning as I read the story.

Chicken Break!: A Counting Book
Chicken Break! A Counting Book
written by Cate Berry
illustrated by Charlotte Alder
I love when a concept book is more than just about the concept itself.  This time young readers get to count along with some chickens who are breaking the coop and out to have some fun!

Middle Grade

Stars So Sweet (All Four Stars, #3)
Stars So Sweet
by Tara Dairman
Another #mustreadin2019 is done!  I moved this one up a few slots because I had introduced the series in a #FirstChapterFriday selection.  I have a feeling kids will be ready for book 3 very soon!
I love this series - Gladys is such an enjoyable character and kids love the baking aspect.  I wish there were more, but it sounds like this may be her last?  Let's hope for more!

Young Adult

Inventing Victoria     Saving Savannah
Inventing Victoria and Saving Savannah
by Tonya Bolden
I read both of these books in preparation for my NCTE panel with Tonya Bolden.  I'm here to tell you to add these to your lists - especially if you are a fan of historical fiction, especially if you enjoy learning about parts of our United States history that is not often taught in history classes or books.  History that gets a quick mention but had a larger impact than what is taught.
Both of these books, along with the earlier Crossing Ebenezer Creek, has a common tie that threads the stories that go through the generations together.  In these two books, we first meet Victoria.  Born Essie, whose Mamma we first meet in Ebenezer Creek, is living in her Mamma's whore house where sex and liquor is seen all around her.  Essie has a small corner of the house that is her own and she tries her best to rise above what is all around her.  With the help of caring friends, Essie meets someone who will help her rise above her station and give her a new life.  With a new life comes a new name.  Essie becomes Victoria and learns the etiquette of high black society.  
Victoria's story is continued through her daughter's story.  Savannah, while living in comfort, knows she wants something different, especially as she sees how not all blacks are treated equally.  Taking place during 1919, when women were fighting for the right to vote and during the riots and bombings in urban cities (Red Summer), Savannah works hard to change the narrative she sees around her.  
Including extensive source notes in both books and author's note in Savannah, these books contain an important part of history that needs to be shared with young adult readers.

Currently Reading

The Heroes Return (Bounders #4)
Bounders:  The Heroes Return
by Monica Tesler
I love this series so much!  This is the fourth in the series - the fifth publishes in December and I think it's the last!  This series is so perfect for readers who enjoy fast moving, suspenseful plots.

Happy Reading to all this week!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

#road2reading Challenge - new independent readers 10.24.19

All journeys have a starting place.
This is a weekly place to find books and tools
that you may use with readers 
at the start of their independent reading journey.
Join in the conversation at #road2reading.

I've been covering a lot of chapter books for our readers but today I'm going to switch it up and focus on our readers who are just starting their reading journey.  Here are some great books for readers who are starting to independently read!

Peanut Butter's First Day of School by Terry Border
Peanut Butter's First Day of School
by Terry Border
You probably know Peanut Butter and Cupcake from their picture books, but not they are starring in a sight word reader.  

Truth or Lie by Erica S. Perl
Truth or Lie:  Sharks!
written by Erica S. Perl
illustrated by Michael Slack
Time to play 3 truths and a lie - shark style!

My First Day of School by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
My First Day of School
written by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
photographs by Jill Wachter
Cute rhyming story about starting school - young readers will recognize things like the easel, sand table, and snack time!

Look Out! A Storm! by David Milgrim
Look Out!  A Storm!
by David Milgrim
Friends can be in a bad mood, but when friends need a helping hand, it's nice to see friends help!

World of Reading by Ella Patrick
Star Wars Galaxy of Adventures: Heroes and Villains
written by Ella Patrick
illustrations by Titmouse
Compare and contrast the heroes and villains of Star Wars and their ships and weapons.

Who is the Mystery Reader? by Mo Willems
Who is the Mystery Reader?
by Mo Willems
I like this one better than the first Unlimited Squirrels story.  Longer than the beloved Elephant and Piggie stories, this one is a good ladder book for those readers who want to try something just a little bit longer.

Hi, Jack! by Mac Barnett     Jack Blasts Off! by Mac Barnett
Hi, Jack! and Jack Blasts Off!
written by Mac Barnett
illustrated by Greg Pizzoli
I'm interested in getting these books in the hands of readers.  I think kids will like the mischievous character, Jack.  As an adult, I think he needs some serious behavior reinforcements to reward the positives instead of his naughty behavior!

Where's Rollo? by Reed Duncan     Uh-Oh, Rollo! by Reed Duncan
Where's Rollo? and Uh-Oh, Rollo!
written by Reed Duncan
illustrated by Keith Frawley
Readers will enjoy meeting Rollo, the bulldog, who is lovable but just can't help getting into trouble!

The Rocky Mountains by Marion Dane Bauer     Niagara Falls by Marion Dane Bauer
Wonders of America series:
The Rocky Mountains and Niagara Falls
written by Marion Dane Bauer
illustrated by John Wallace
Young readers are curious about the world, I'm glad this series exists to tell them about the different landmarks in America!

Hope some of these titles make their way into the hands of your young readers.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday - a roundup of nonfiction reading 10.23.19

Wednesdays I join Alyson Beecher from kidlitfrenzy and other
#kidlit bloggers to share wonderful nonfiction picture books.
The intention of today's blog post is to give professionals that work in the
education field new nonfiction reading material and ideas to use 
with students to promote a love of reading nonfiction materials.

Two weeks ago I wrote about the importance of including nonfiction in your read alouds.  So what are some books you might want to include?  Here are some of the books we're using as recent #classroombookaday selections.  You'll notice there are biographies and expository nonfiction and narrative nonfiction selections.  Most of these were published in 2019 but I also included some favorites.  I'll include a second roundup later this fall!

Elvis Is King!
Elvis is King
written by Jonah Winter
illustrated by Red Nose Studio

Magic Ramen: The Story of Momofuku Ando
Magic Ramen 
written by Andrea Wang
illustrated by Kana Urbanowicz

Two Brothers, Four Hands
Two Brothers, Four Hands
written by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan
illustrated by Hadley Hooper

Just Like Rube Goldberg: The Incredible True Story of the Man Behind the Machines
Just Like Rube Goldberg
written by Sarah Aronson
illustrated by Robert Neubecker

The Boy Who Grew a Forest: The True Story of Jadav Payeng
The Boy Who Grew a Forest
written by Sophia Gholz
illustrated by Kayla Harren

Titan and the Wild Boars: The True Cave Rescue of the Thai Soccer Team
Titan and the Wild Boars
written by Susan Hood and Patthana Sornhiran
illustrated by Dow Phumiruk

Yogi: the Life, Loves, and Language of Baseball Legend Yogi Berra
written by Barb Rosenstock
illustrated by Terry Widener

Unstoppable: How Jim Thorpe and the Carlisle Indian School Football Team Defeated Army
written by Art Coulson
illustrated by Nick Hardcastle

If Elephants Disappeared
If Elephants Disappeared
by Lily Williams

I, Fly: The Buzz About Flies and How Awesome They Are
I, Fly
written by Bridget Heos
illustrated by Jennifer Plecas

Seashells: More Than a Home
Seashells More Than a Home
written by Melissa Stewart
illustrated by Sarah Brannen

The Truth about Crocodiles: Seriously Funny Facts about Your Favorite Animals
The Truth About Crocodiles
by Maxwell Eaton III

The Elephant
The Elephant
by Jenni Desmond

Stretch to the Sun: From a Tiny Sprout to the Tallest Tree on Earth
Stretch to the Sun
written by Carrie Pearson
illustrated by Susan Swan

Popcorn Country: The Story of America's Favorite Snack
Popcorn Country
written by Cris Peterson
photographs by David Lundquist

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written by Silvia Lopez
illustrated by Guido Daniele

We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga
We Are Grateful
written by Traci Sorell
illustrated by Frané Lessac

Moon! Earth's Best Friend
Moon! Earth's Best Friend
written by Stacy McAnulty
illustrated by Stevie Lewis

One Proud Penny
One Proud Penny
written by Randy Siegel
illustrated by Serge Bloch

Does It Fart?: A Kid's Guide to the Gas Animals Pass
Does It Fart?
written by Nick Caruso
illustrated by Alex Griffiths

Wait, Rest, Pause: Dormancy in Nature
Wait, Rest, Pause: Dormancy in Nature
by Marcie Flinchum Atkins

I'm Trying to Love Math
I'm Trying to Love Math
by Bethany Barton

written by Blair Thornburgh
illustrated by Scott Campbell

That's your roundup!  Did you find some books to add to your stack?