Monthly Archives: March 2012

An Homage to Nefarious Intent or “A List of About 10 Fantastic Villains in KidLit”

I am a member of “Plot-aholics Anonymous”.  Readers like me know what a struggle it is to meander through a character driven tale that really goes nowhere.  I need conflict.  I need struggle.  I need a villain to be the yin to the hero’s yang. When I pitched this idea to Colby, I thought it would […]

Laurel’s Chapter Book Fun

Laurel Snyder needs our help. She is going to attempt to write a chapter book, and she would like the input of your students. If this is something you and your students would be interested in, please show them Laurel’s video and then have them take the survey. Hey, kids! Help me write a book! […]

Light a Candle/Cast a Shadow

A Wizard of Earthsea (1975) by Ursula K. Le Guin In 1968, a small press publisher asked already famous fantasy and science fiction author Ursula K. LeGuin to write something for “older kids,” promising her free range. She wrote an archetypal story of a boy who leaves his miserable origins and achieves fame at a […]

Boy + Bot, By: Ame Dyckman

Boy + Bot By: Ame Dyckman Illustrated By: Dan Yaccarino Release Date: April 10, 2012 I received Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman in the mail last Friday. I knew that  Mr. Schu  loved the book , so I was excited to give it a read. I waited until my son got home so that we could experience the book for the […]

Books and Batting Averages By Barry Wolverton

I’ve been a book lover, but not necessarily a serious reader, my entire life. My mom put me to bed with a story every night when I was a child (usually one of the Uncle Wiggily stories, which I couldn’t get enough of.) And our house was full of books, again, thanks to my mom: […]

A Brain Full of Books

Books have shaped my life the way little else has. Important moments have always been associated with whatever book I was reading at the time. Starting kindergarten? Well that’s A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams, still one of my favorite picture books. Graduating from high school? When I think back, the cover […]

Who’s Afraid of a Picture Book?

As a child I was deathly afraid of The Monster at the End of this Book, but I was also intrigued by it.  Each time the story was read to me my imagination took over and got the better of me. I imagined all sorts of different monsters each one scarier than the last. After […]

Well-Worn and Well-Loved: Ten Classic Professional Books I Cannot Live Without

One wall in my “office” is filled with professional books.  From floor to ceiling, the shelves are filled with the books that have helped me learn to teach thoughtfully. I have been reading professional books throughout my career. I have hundreds and hundreds of books that have impacted my thinking. I have been lucky to […]

How a Book Saved My Life (sort of)

I’ve been a member of the Nerdy Book Club since I was about 4 years old. According to my mom that’s when my parents discovered I could read.  Since I am now 48, that means I’ve been a reader for 44 years. (See, readers can also do math!) I guess you could say I have […]

A Sweet Retro Review of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

First, I want to point out that I’m not a teacher, but the main reason I love this book (and, by extension, everything relating to Roald Dahl) is because of one.  My second grade teacher, Mrs. Pappas, gave us plenty of time to read and for 30 minutes or so a day, she’d even read to […]