Sunday, February 27, 2011

True confession time

I am still taking the Newbery course and am now reading books from the 50s and 60s.  I am liking them better, but still ...  so, I did something bad.  My copy of "Moon Over Manifest" came in with a book order, and can you guess what I did?  Yes, I have been sneaking in reading time for this 2011 winner!  I feel like I did when I read with a flashlight under the covers as a child.  Maybe this is how you should feel when you read a great, distinguished book?

BTW, how many of you use the lesson plan template offered by AASL that uses our new standards?  If not, do you at least list these standards when you write your lessons plans?  Or do you at least think about them as you craft lessons?

What are you doing to engage students during these long, gray days before spring's arrival?

Monday, February 21, 2011


I should have known that if I talked about the nice weather, it would change!  I am only getting rain (for now) but I see by the weather map (yes, I am a closet meteorologist) that many states are getting snow.  So, no more talk about weather -- let's talk books!  As I continue with my Newbery course, I realize that I don't really remember reading any Newberys until I was an adult taking literature classes.  Can you remember the first Newbery you read?   Of course, the first book I really remember hearing was "Charlotte's Web", is that the same for you?

On another theme,  as a school librarian do you plan your year (curriculum mapping), what you will teach at each grade level?  Do you wait to see what your teachers are teachers and then combine your instruction with theirs?  Or do you do some kind of combination?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Sunny days!

I hope you  are in a part of the country that has had this gorgeous sunshine!  I can't help but stop at every window to enjoy it.  This weekend I am spending a lot of time reading, because I am taking an online course from ALSC about Newbery's -- the history, misconceptions, and mystique's.  It is great, because I have not read many of them, feeling like they must include at least one chapter with a dead dog!  We are reading through the decades, looking at trends, and reading articles that come from those decades.  I'll let you know if I enjoy more Newberys after this course is finished.
So far I have read: The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle, The Cat Who Went to Heaven, and Rabbit Hill.  Do you see a trend emerging in my reading choices?

BTW, has anyone gone to see "I am Number 4"?  I read the book and am wondering about the movie.  So let me know.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

How did you spend your snow days?

I think most of us in the U.S. have had several calamity days this school year.  I had two this past week.  How did I spend them?  Reading books, mostly.  I brought back a whole bag of ARCs from ALA midwinter and I couldn't get out, so what's a girl to do?  (Housework, laundry, writing deadlines, actually all needed done!)  Just a few of the ARCs I enjoyed were: a new book by Kevin Henkes "Junonia," a chapter book for middle grade readers  A gentle, yet realistic story that shows nothing stays the same, but change is good.  "Across the Universe" by Beth Revis is a young adult title that takes place on space ship "Godspeed" transporting selected frozen people to create a new world on a new planet and save the human race.  They will be on this ship for 300 years, asleep -- except for Amy who is mysteriously awakened 50 years too early. This book has teen romance and angst.  The teen book I liked better was "Unearthly" by Cynthia Hand about Clara, who discovers she is one quarter angel, with certain gifts to be developed and a divine purpose to be done.  The characters are likable, the plot different, and the ending hard to predict.  The last book I read (to avoid doing I what needed to do ...) was "The Unseen World of Poppy Malone."  I loved this middle grade reader.  The parents are real life ghost hunters, but not very successful.  Poppy and her brother do NOT believe in ghosts, vampires, or any of the creatures their parents try to hunt, .... until Poppy accidentally finds the Goblin living the the house they just moved into.  Her brother and baby sibling get pulled into the adventure that ensues while the parents are blissfully unaware as they continue to try to contact the presence in the house.  After reading these, guilt set in and I got busy with my deadlines.
I am still struggling with my professional reflection portfolio which I am completing for professional development, which I must go and work on right now .....