Hi friends! This blog is for teachers and families- all for the sheer joy of literacy. When we are enthusiastic about reading and writing our students and our own kids become excited to read and write. I hope that we all can be models for those in our care- how did you show your passion for reading, writing, learning, language, or words today?? It's in those small, daily moments that we teach kids to love literacy.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Reading + Pinning + Doing (13)

Hope your spring is going well! It's lovely weather out here in Oakland, CA-- with the sun shining and the flowers blooming!





The Book Thief by Markus Zusak: I'm reading this before I go to bed each night- I love it. I'm not that in to reading YA for personal reading (I love reading them with students, though), but this, for me, is a winner. The book is set in Germany during Hilter's rise to power. Its told from the perspective of death. I'm hoping it's not too tragic in the end! I need an uplifting read. If you haven't read this, you should. And I would recommend it for mature middle-schoolers on up (ages 11+). If you know of a teen/tween that's read this, I'd love to hear how they liked it.

With the Family

A Good Day, by Kevin Henkes: This is a short and simple book (great for kids ages 1-3), that shows how someone's misfortune can lead to an other's fortune. The animals all experience something that give them a bad feeling about the day (squirrel drops a but, and dog gets tangled up in the fence), but in the end, they all end up having a good day (squirrel finds a bigger nut, and dog gets untangled). This is a keeper!

Me Baby, You Baby, by Ashley Wolff: The is a lovely book about a couple of moms taking their tots to the zoo for the day. My daughter asks for this book every night. The book has rhyme throughout. I like that you see momma and baby animals when the kids visit the zoo together. I also like that the animals in this book are not the common zoo animals (sea lions, sloth, etc...). Here's a text sample: Me baby, you baby, visit the zoo, baby.//Tall baby, small baby, comes when she's called baby.//Warm baby, cold baby, tucked in a fold baby.// Me baby, you baby, look how you grew baby!// The illustrations give a lot for child and parent to talk about together. I also like that this a a book set in San Francisco, since we're nearby in Oakland.

Where is the Green Sheep? by Mem Fox (a favorite author!!) and Judy Horacek: Every good book has a question leading the reader through a book. And throughout this book the reader is on the search for the green sheep. This book introduces tots to a lot of colors (red, yellow, green...), opposites (rainy + sunny, far + near, up + down, thin + wide), and other toddler friendly vocabulary (bath, slide, bed, car, train). Here a text sample: Here is the wind sheep/And here is the wave sheep./Here is the scared sheep, and here is the brave sheep/But where is the green sheep? This is a perfect book to read with your toddler, or to gift to a toddler. Another keeper!

Duck, Duck, Goose! (A Coyote's on the Loose!), by Karen Beaumont, illustrated by Jose Aruego and Ariane Dewey: The title harkens to the tone and text in this silly book. Check this out if you have a little one who likes a good chuckle. This book also is chock-full with rhyme.

Creature, by Andrew Zimmerman: WOW! I had seen this book around pre-baby. But reading it with my toddler is just lovely- she loves it. The photography is brilliant. This book is meant for young kids, but kids (and adults) of all ages will enjoy perusing through the pictures. Lovely.

Bats at the Library, by Brian Lies: If you have a school-aged child, you must check out this book. It is over my 2-yr-olds head (she's not quite sure what to make of the bats), but I read it to my 1st-4th graders, and they all loved it. The bats invade the library secretly at night to soak in the goodness of the books. The illustrations are capturing, and the text is playful and sophisticated. The vocabulary is rich, so I gave quick synonyms for my younger listeners, and that was enough for them to be able to enjoy it. Here's a sample: And if we listen, we will hear/some distant voices drawing near-/louder, louder, louder still,/ they coax us in, until...//everyone--old bat or pup--/ has been completely swallowed up/ and lives inside a book instead/of simply hearing something read.// I love this one!



I love this recent pin, a blog post about RtI from Hello Literacy. It seems like she has the whole school psyched about and involved in the RtI process- no small feat! I love this blog- check it out!



In school, we're starting the 3rd and final RtI cycle for the year. The state test is in 3 weeks- which means that the kiddos will get their reading intervention interrupted for a week or more (boo!).

I'm on the board of a local non-profit, Harbor House, and I've been designing a 4oth anniversary book for an upcoming dinner event. I've been spending free hours working in it (hence, the lack of blogging). I'm excited for its progress, but there's still a lot to do for that this coming week!

We revisited Oakland's Fairyland while my mother-in-law was in town. Check out these book-themed benches (I love 'em!):
Cousins had a fun Easter egg hunt at Grandma's:

The weather here is wonderful! We've been trying to get outside as much as possible. Here's a picture from a walk in the redwoods this morning (a short 10 minute drive away).

Hope you have a great week...I'm off to weed the front yard (the price to pay for a beautiful spring!)

I'm linking up to these fab blogs---


  1. Where Is the Green Sheep is one of my all-time favourites too. I hope I get to look at Bats in the Library one day - love the sound of it!

  2. I love those book-themed benches!
    Thanks for linking with Favorite Resources. The blog you linked to seems to have lots of literacy resources linked all along the sidebar!

  3. Mem Fox is one of my favorites, too! I built a story box around her books.

  4. we love a good day! matt's aunt got it for the girls last year. a great book about turning your day around.

  5. You have amazing ideas about wonderful books. To say thank you I am passing along this award to you. Thanks


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