Monday, September 23, 2013

Richard Peck

A charming little story about a very small mouse with a question mark shaped tail, and a very big secret (one that he doesn't even know about yet). The setting is Buckingham Palace and the small mouse with no name will have you scurrying all over the palace grounds, while he searches for his sense of self and place. An adventure story with a mouse hero to root for. A Victorian style mystery adventure, that will sure to please all the rodent fans out there. Richard Peck is a Newbery Award Winner and Two-Time National Book Award Finalist. Copyright for this book is 2013.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Ten Birds Meet a Monster


Shapes, shadows, and surprises through spectacular black and white ink drawings, offers a new favorite for those readers who value art in picture books. 10 birds are trying to scare off a "monster", so they experiment with the draping, wearing, and hiding under various articles of clothing; from an upside down blazer that looks like an opening scallop shell to a roller skate with wheels open wide like eyes. The creative illustrations were interesting to look at. The text was almost unnecessary. The story could reveal itself as a simple counting book or playful celebration of some silly birds, or perhaps it leads to a conversation about fearing what we don't know and how sometimes breaking down fear into influential elements, might just be the strategy of support. A special little gem.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Sight Words & Letter ID

Sight Word Center: Students can use materials like markers, colored pencils, stamps, water color paints, and cut paper to create their sight words. With emergent writers I liked to start the year off with Letter ID and Sight Word Centers.



A student's word work with a variety of mediums and materials. I love the cut paper. Please note, I pre-cut out the letters ahead of time (yes it took a very long time and my hands were sore and red when I was through). It actually was fun it an odd way. I am fond of fonts and collage so that might explain it.

Oh how the magnetic letters collection seem to expand. A very handy tool though. I use to love to start fall off with a rainbow table Magnetic Letter Match. For the duration of the center students at this center are going through the bins of mixed up magnetic letters and they are matching them to a letter label. It is a great sort technique. I always liked to store my magnetic letters in plastic fishing bins too. It is a great fall center. Depending on my numbers, my literacy centers started out with 4 centers at 15 minutes each for a total of 60 minutes. I would run a center and if I had a parent volunteer or other staff member, they would run a center, and two centers were independent. The independent centers were blocks, housekeeping, felt board, puppets, library corner, motor skills (play doh), puzzles and games for some examples.