Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Who is Mr. X?

In Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead, we have heard Safer talk a lot about Mr. X and he has some interesting thoughts. Share what you think about Mr. X below.

Friday, March 22, 2013

It's Chickadee Time!

It's time to vote for your favorite Chickadee Award nominee!  This is a very exciting time and I can't wait to see the results!  Here's how the votes look so far:

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Connecting with Authors

Last week the third graders skyped with author Mina Javaherbin (Thanks again, Mina!). If you have not skyped with an author I highly recommend that you schedule one...right now! I think it is so important for students to be able to connect with authors. Not only is it fun and exciting but it gives them a chance to see how authors create the stories and pieces of writing we love. It also gives them a chance to hear about the writing process in a very realistic way. So a week after our skype visit, we took some time to discuss the importance of the visit and what they enjoyed the most.  Here is what they said, their words really do speak for themselves.
  • It’s fun to ask questions. 
  • It’s fun to skype with authors because they can show you their books that they are working on and aren’t out yet. 
  • You get a glimpse into their life, like seeing where they live. 
  • You get to see their personalities. 
  • You get to see what their life is like, like see if they have any other jobs.  
  • You can see where they are right now. 
  • You get to learn about the book and where they got the idea. 
  • You can get ideas for your writing.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Snow Day Reads

One reason I love snow days is because I can spend a big chunk of the day reading!  There is really nothing better than that...well maybe the chocolate chip cookies!  So I was able to finish two pretty good books, Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson and A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff. 

Hattie Ever After (Hattie, #2)Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved, loved, loved Hattie Big Sky and couldn't wait to get my hands on Hattie Ever After. While I did like the first better I still enjoyed Hattie's story, spunk, and perseverance. I also liked how there was some mysterious criminal activity woven into the story and of course I am sucker for a happy end.

In the second story of Hattie we follow her as she up and leaves Montana for a shot in the dark as a writer in San Francisco. She also leaves Charlie (the boy will she or won't she marry?) behind. But this is nothing new for Hattie and she proves to be quite the young woman as she lands a job for the local paper but she also learns some interest information about her Uncle Chester, the uncle who left her the Montana homestead.

View all my reviews A Tangle of KnotsA Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Although I sometimes have a difficult time with magic or really anything unrealistic, I did enjoy A Tangle of Knots. Each character was mysterious in their own way and I was eager to find out their story. I also think the idea of young people, or really anyone, searching for their talent is an idea that can strike a chord with many.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, March 13, 2013 week later!

With an already full schedule on the actual World Read Aloud Day, author Mina Javaherbin kindly offered to skype with our third grade class today, one week later.  It was worth the wait!  The third graders loved hearing about her life as an author, her life in Iran, and her life in California!  We even got to see her backyard, and yes, we are jealous of that gorgeous California weather.  She made some really thoughtful statements that stuck with me...especially when talking about creating her picture book, Goal!  Although Goal! takes place in South Africa, Mina has never been but she talked about how you don't necessarily need to be there to know how people would/will feel.  She certainly was able to understand and portray how Ajani and his friends felt.  If you haven't read Goal! go get yourself a copy!

Mina's Backyard!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Spelling reform?

As we continue to read Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead, we continue to learn of new things. Bob English Who Draws is a big believer in spelling reform. Have you ever heard of spelling reform?  Some believe that the spelling of many English language words should be changed, or reformed, due to the phonetic inconsistencies.  So tell me what you think, should there be a spelling reform?  Make sure to explain your answer.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

World Read Aloud Day!

Hooray! What can be more fun?!  Please take some time and read to someone today!  Third graders had a little role reversal today!  They picked out their favorite book and read to our class.  It was so much much fun that we ran out of time!  

Sixth graders skyped with author Mark Jeffrey and heard a chapter from Max Quick: The Two Travelers.  If you haven't read the Max Quick: The Pocket and the Pendant, go get it!

Author Tricia Springstubb skyped with our second grade students.  We had a blast listening to her life as a writer and even got a sneak peak of her newest book, Phoebe and Digger.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Read Across America

We had a blast celebrating Read Across America today!  Read Across America happens each year, around March 2, as a way to celebrate the fabulous Dr. Seuss!  Our classes enjoyed guest readers from our community, courtesy of United Way.  In our library classes, we skyped with schools in North Carolina, Missouri, and Texas. The fourth and fifth graders shared Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee by Chris Van Dusen and the second grade shared My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss. With skyped we were really able to "read across America!" First grade checked out the Seussville website and kindergarten heard one of my Dr. Seuss favorites, Yertle the Turtle.