There Is a Bird On Your Head!

thereisabird

Mo Willems has become THE master of easy readers. With pre-book work includes Sesame Street and animation, he had the perfect training to create child- and teacher-friendly easy readers. I think he deserves every one of his many awards. What do notice in this deceptively simple book? What does he do with simple shapes and […]

Ling and Ting: Not Exactly the Same!

lingandting

This is one of our two easy readers (a.k.a. early readers) for our second class. We talked about the difference between picture books and easy readers. How well do you think this book works? Clearly it’s for somewhat more fluent readers than the Elephant and Piggy books. Do the situations match the age of the […]

Picture This

picture this

Molly Bang‘s Picture This is her personal exploration as she tries to analyze the emotional effects of art. Most illustrators go with their gut as they compose their pictures, but Molly wanted to see if there were some rules involved as well. An experienced illustrator, she says she began to understand art and composition better […]

Three articles about making picture books

March/April 1998 Horn Book Magazine

The additional reading for our first class comes from Horn Book Magazine‘s classic 1998 special issue on picture books. After you’ve read them, please come back to this post to comment. And as always, I hope this discussion will include more than just my students! The articles in question are “The Words” by Charlotte Zolotow […]

Where the Wild Things Are

Where the Wild Things Are

Here’s our very first post for the books my students will be reading this semester. Our first class is Thursday night, Feb. 27, and they’re all supposed to discuss one of the readings for the week in the comments  I am hoping the rest of you will comment and discuss, too, since that would make […]

The scoreboard is against them

Amazon River

Bernardo is a second grader. Today his teacher is reading about the origins of the Amazon River to the class. Bernardo knows the river because it is right by his grandma’s house. The reading today says that the Amazon is the widest, vastest, and most plentiful river in the world. He would like to learn […]

Marrying accountability and independent reading

The book nook in Elizabeth's classroom

My middle school remedial reading students come to me with a wide variety of reading profiles, interests and needs. Yet one thing almost all of my students have in common is that they begin the year as students who have spent very little time reading. In order to combat this problem, our classroom book nook […]

Beyond Helen Keller

She Touched the World

It is said that it is important for children to see and read about positive representations of themselves in popular culture. As books, films and television begin to feature more and more diversity, there is one minority group that seems slower to find itself in the spotlight – Deaf and hard of hearing characters. Thanks […]

Happy Valentine’s Day

tunnell_candybomber

Some years ago, my optimistic neighbor told me that he considers Valentine’s Day to be the unofficial start of spring. Given the ridiculous winter we are having in the northeast, this year I am holding him to it! So, in desperate hope for the start of spring, I am dedicating this post to Valentine’s Day. […]

Books for Lauren’s adolescent lit class, fall 2013

Here’s the list of books from our most recent offering of adolescent lit. Usually Lolly and I teach these classes back-to-back, but this year we had to split them up. Next fall we hope to offer them together again. In addition to the books listed below, we assign articles, blogs, or other material related to […]