Saturday, June 28, 2014

Who was Here?

By Mia Posada
The guessing organizational feature is always a big hit with my kindergarten audience. The format helps them apply inferences and think about context clues and prior knowledge. It enhances their experience with changing their thinking too. The vocabulary and phrasing in this book is fluent, and movement and phrases like "the beast lumbered on" or "scorching sun rays" are only two of the highlights. The illustrations are beautiful, being a mix of watercolor and collage. I like how the book offers additional factual text about the animal that goes with the print, yet choosing not to read it, will not interfere with the rich value I mentioned earlier. While students are researching a particular animal and there is a page in this book about that animal, it would be a great reference for a budding researcher.  Another quality feature is the fact that it is not specific to one setting or season, rather prints from all habitats leave their prints embedded on riverbanks to sand dunes!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Time Passes

When too much time elapses between things...like a blog post...knowing how to get going again is a challenge. It just feels awkward, and impossible, and only gets worse with each minute past the time you noticed it has been a while. Playing off the absence with a book review seems flippant (I don't think I have ever used that word in print before). Unloading the 101 reasons why the last year has been inches from impossible seems to personal. So, let me just say, I am back. I am also...(insert drum roll here)...going back to teaching kindergarten next year!!! My favorite grade to teach. Just took 5 years, several grade levels, a short stint out of school, a reduction in force, a call back, and a massive retirement year giving me seniority (not last one hired)to be going back into my old kindergarten classroom. I guess I'll run with positive. Lots more soon. Two weeks left of school (someone messed up the snow day calendar) and then the reset button is being pressed and a new me is promised to emerge, some how, some way.