Author Archives: CBethM

Bearandsquirrel400 October 13

Doodling My Way to a Story by Deb Pilutti

A couple of years ago I attended an intimate writing retreat with a few friends. Gilchrist Retreat Center in Three Rivers, Michigan, is a wonderful place to spend a weekend writing, talking about writing and hanging out with writers. We each had our own little house called a hermitage, with a fireplace, a writing desk […]

Sketch113194837 October 12

Milestones: Reading Ahead by Kristina Cerise

I’m reading aloud from book two of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series (The Sea of Monsters) and can’t help but notice that my son isn’t really listening. This book has held him in rapt attention for days, but suddenly, his eyes are wandering the room instead of being glued to the page. “Are […]

from lost in the sun October 10


There comes a time in every character’s life when they are at a crossroad. They must face the simple, honest truths about life and how to live it, but often times they need the insight, advice and guidance from a friend, parent or stranger to help them choose their own destiny. Whether or not they […]

lynne smith October 09

Keep the Story Going by Lynne Vanderveen Smith

If you are anything like me, you have fond memories of having a child curled up in your lap as you shared a story.  It might have been your own child or your grandchild.  Remember how they often had a book they loved to hear over and over. You almost got to the end of […]

page by paige October 08

What We Bless by Cindy Minnich

I can tell who my graphic novel fanatics are as soon as I make a point of telling my classes where to find the graphic novels in the high school library (741.5, along the wall by the hallway, near the bottom of the shelf) – they look relieved. I suspect, though I don’t know, that […]

President Squid_FC_HiRes October 07

Aaron Reynolds Interviews President Squid

Never before, has a large many-legged ocean creature run for president. Yet it seems that 2016 could be the year. With the March release of his new picture book PRESIDENT SQUID (written by Aaron Reynolds and illustrated by Sara Varon), it seems that a giant squid means to run for president this election! What can […]

lenny and lucy October 06

The Art Room by Philip Stead

A few weeks ago Erin and I were visited by an old friend. Our friend is a big bear of a man with a fluffy white beard. He is the kind of person, both in looks and in demeanor, who must spend much of his December every year convincing children that he is not, in […]

i am number four October 05

Take Turns! by Deb Krygeris

If you grew up with siblings, how many times did you hear your mom or dad say, “Take turns!” when you and your sister (or brother) fought over who got to move first in checkers or whether your or your sib dressed Barbie first in the bride gown (and let’s not forget the fight over […]

fish in a tree - final cover October 04

Beyond the Labels by Nancy Paulsen

If we are lucky, we have had them in our lives—the teachers who try to understand us and look beyond any labels we may have been given (no matter where in the range from “smart-aleck” to “troublemaker” to “knucklehead” we may fall!); the teachers who listen to us and take the time to see the […]

Jkt_0590929974 October 03

Top Ten Picture Books to Build Character by Anna Sedenka

  At the beginning of the school year I always take a look at my collection of picture books and try to decide which ones I absolutely have to share with my class.  Of course I would love to share all of my picture books with my students, but there just isn’t enough time in […]