It is Monday! What are you reading?

I went to the library in search for more Froggy books this afternoon, unfortunately, I only found two. So I decided to bring two more books from the same author, Jonathan London. The illustrations London uses in his books are very colorful and appealing to the young readers, as well as to adults. The fun words he uses throughout the books are entertaining as well. Such words are: whoosh, yes, splash, slop, blue, zap, etc. These books are appropriate for first or second graders.

duck and hippo
Photo CC: by Amazon.com

Duck and Hippo In The Rainstorm

This is a book that will definitely teach young children what friendship is and how nice it is to share what you have with your friends, in this case the two odd friends, Duck and Hippo share an umbrella when they go for a walk on a rainy afternoon. During this walk, the two friends experience many adventurous events.

 

 

 

 

froggy plays t-ball
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Froggy Plays T-Ball

Another super cute story about Froggy! This time Froggy starts to play T-Ball and his father is the coach. On the way to the game, his dad reminds him of the steps when he hit the ball; “First, run to first. Second, run to second. Third, run to third. Then run home!  It is obvious that Froggy does not know how to play this game, especially, when he swings and lets go of the bat hitting Max in the head. Towards the end of the game, after hitting the ball far, Froggy does just what his dad told him. However, after third base, instead of running to home base, he started running to his real home. Frogilina yelled, “Not your home, silly! Home plate!”

lets go froggy
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Let’s Go Froggy! 

Froggy wants to go on a bike ride with his father. However, overtime he is about to step outside, he wants to bring a new item with him. The problem is, he does not know where he has left anything. This is when his father tells him that “it should be where he left them last!” Read the book to find out if Froggy will ever get to go on his bike ride…

 

sun dance water dance
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Sun Dance Water Dance

Summer has finally gotten here and the children can’t wait to go outside and enjoy the many adventures which can be done in the summer. Swimming, walking on the edge of the water, looking at nature, and many other things are fun things the children get to do! The illustrations and beautiful colors in this book are just astonishing. I love the color choice for each page. It helps to describe what is going on and the warm colors also help to welcome the children into reading.

What Am I Currently Reading?

using tech in the classroom
Phot CC: by Constant Contact 

Well, the book that I mostly focused on reading this weekend is not necessarily children’s literature. For my other class, we had to read two long chapters and choose categories to write about. In the book, Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works, by Pitler, Hubbell, and Kuhn, chapter five talks about using linguistic form (as language) and nonlinguistic form (as mental images and physical sensations) in the classroom. I talked about using the nonlinguistic form and how to incorporate various applications and programs.

As future teachers it is very important to remember and to keep in mind that every students is different and thus will learn differently; which includes learning styles. Personally, I have always been a visual learner, I have to see information in order to remember better, than just hearing about it. Visual learners are able to retain information better when they have the opportunity to see visual examples such as picture or diagrams, videos, written examples and directions, among other things. This chapter talks about nonlinguistic representations, and about the many “representations which enhance students’ ability to use mental images to represent and elaborate on knowledge, such as nonlinguistic representations” (mental images and physical sensations) (Pitler, Hubbell, and Kuhn p.p. 105). Lets keep in mind that nonlinguistic representation also includes kinesthetic and many type of learners as well.

Thinking about it, this nonlinguistic form definitely relates to children and reading. When children are beginning to learn to read, having illustrations in the books actually helps them to better understand what is going on and many times it helps to guide them with their reading as well. I actually remember when my son was beginning to read and he would rely on the pictures in order to continue his reading when he was not sure how to pronounce a word. I believe it is very important to expose children to the various ways of learning.

After all, a picture is worth a thousand words, right…?

What Did I Recently Finish Reading?

Mr. Burke is Bersek
Photo CC: by Harpercollins Publishers

Yesterday I drove two hours to get my mother from the airport. Unfortunately, I forgot all my reading materials at the house. I got to the airport 3o minutes early, and I knew I had to do something to kill time, Facebook was not an option. I was definitely regretting that I forgot all my books at home when I have so much reading to do! After waiting and waiting more than 30 minutes, I learned the flight was delayed two hours! Good thing I had made the choice to read one of the books my son had in his reading portfolio.

Mr. Burke Is Berserk, by Dan Gutman was an interesting book, I have to say that even today I am not sure if I ended up liking it or not. One fact is that it did make me laugh several times since its genre is hilarious, and silly words were used as well. As I read through the book, I kept wondering if my son, who is seven years and in second grade, was actually understanding the words when he was reading this book. (Because the characters all of a sudden started talking like people from the South used to in the 1950s during the Gold rush). An example is, ‘”well, Ah’ll be dogged,” Mr. Burke said. “Mah great-great-grandpappy lived over yonder back in ’48. He told me there was a heap a gold left in the ground after the big gold rush ended. And Ah reckon it was right here!”‘ (p.p 61). Personally, this type of language would definitely completely confuse me, and I believe it could get some young readers/children confuse as well. However, I do have to say the illustrations through out the book also help the reader to better understand what is going on. (Illustrations are black and white only). I believe this book would be more appropriate for a fourth or fifth grader because of its language and form of expression. Also, the fact that there are several pages which talk about zombies eating the kids brains, Mr. Burke, the groundskeeper, killing kids with a chainsaw, using the word stupid, I hate math, and many other graphic words (for lack of a better word), make this book more appropriate for an older mature reader.

Everything started to change at Ella Mentry School when Mayor Hubble decided to fire the art and music teacher and to make budged and services cuts in the school in order to stop “spending” so much money. He comes up with many silly solutions which definitely make the reader giggle. One day, when Mayor Hubble decided to get rid of the swings, slides, balls, and to cut the monkey bars at the school to rent them, everything changed. All of a sudden, Mr. Burke, the school groundskeeper who had also been fired by the mayor, started digging underneath where the monkey bars used to be, and to everyones surprise, he found Gold! Also, the weirdest thing in the history of the world happened, Mr. Burke also found “Gilver,” which was a mixture of gold and silver. When these events happened, the book takes a different turn and many new events continue happening.

Check this book out to find out what happened. Will the kids be able to get their play ground back? Their school materials? And most important of all, will the music and art program come back to the school?

It is Monday! What are you reading?

reading in the wildDonalyn Miller has said many things that totally make sense, both as a reader and as a future teacher. I have continued reading the book, Reading in the Wild, and the author has brought up many great points about how to get students to enjoy reading. The book starts by introducing the five key points every wild reader should do/follow…

Chapter 1- Dedicate time to read

Every student needs to spend quality time reading inside and outside school. As teachers we need to set time apart for the students to spend reading. It is also very important treat all students the same, including those who need the extra help.

Chapter 2- Self-select reading material

Isn’t wonderful when we as readers get the opportunity to choose our own reading material according to our interests? When students get this opportunity, they are more encouraged to continue with their reading, as they have the freedom to make choices.

Chapter 3- Share books and reading with other readers

Share a community of readers. Those people who like to read, also enjoy sharing their reading material with other people. This is a great opportunity to share, discuss, and find  reading material. A great example of this, is using WordPress, Feedley, Twitter, and Goodreads among other sites to share good books with other people.

Chapter 4- Have reading plans

It is important for readers to learn how to choose a book  and to know why they want to read it. Setting goals for yourself and having a plan to read beyond your current book will pursue the person to continue reading more and more books the minute they get done with one. But how does this happen? A good strategy is continuing with the same author, same series, recommended books, or simply books that catch your interest!

Chapter 5- Share preferences for genres, authors, and topics

Having the freedom to choose your own reading material is more exciting that being told what you have to read! However, this chapter talks about how to challenge students to expand their reading horizons. It is also very important for students to try something new in their reading, such as a change in author, and fiction or nonfiction books.

It is extremely important for every child to get a “taste” of reading in order to become a lifelong reader and to succeed in the outside world! I believe that if students are introduced to the wonderful world of reading at an early age, they will begin to learn to love and enjoy the world of reading.

What Am I Currently Reading?

reading in the wildI have continued reading, Reading in the Wild, by Donalyn Miller. However, I have to say it has been hard to stay focus in this book. I am not sure why, maybe because it is such a long book and there are hardly any pictures involved. I also have been trying to focus on my reading for my other class, and I believe this has to do a lot with it.

The introduction in this book starts by telling the reader many of the “tricks” teachers can use in order to keep children engaged/involved in reading. However, as future teachers we must remember that one shoe does not fit every student. In other words, we must keep in mind that what works for one student will not always work for another. As future teacher we must be flexible to change and not be afraid to change something in the middle of the “lesson” in order to suit the learning of the students better.

We are also reminded that when students find a book they truly enjoy, it will be easier for them to read and continue reading. The book says, ” the real purposes of reading include personal connections—- that books can touch us all deeply and elicit laughter, tears, and other reactions.” These words are so true! When we feel a connection with a certain book, it allows us to continue reading the same material and/or find more material by the same author. Recently, I read the book, Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry and definitely enjoyed the way she wrote the book, especially, since this book won a John Newbery Award. The reason as to why I chose to read this book was because I was looking for material related to the Holocaust. In her series of books, The Giver,  also won a John Newbery Award and this will the next book I will be reading.

Stay tuned to find out with me what this book is all about… 

Reading Challenge…

The reading challenge has continued with the Froggy books. I have to say I made a great choice, as I have truly enjoyed all of Jonathan London’s books. I have read several of them and definitely suggest them to everyone. My son got super excited when he noticed I brought some more home!

For my reading challenge I said I was going to read all the series of Froggy. Apparently, there are a total of 28 books. These books are appropriate for a first or second grader. These books are great to be used with different lesson plans as well. So far I have read five of them, and I felt in love with them. Since these books are super short, I also have started reading, Reading in the Wild, by Donalyn Miller.

Check these books out, they are great…

Froggy’s Goes To Grandma’s froggy goes to grandmas

Froggy is so excited to go visit his grandma, as she always takes them to many exciting places. One of those great places was the museum, where the children got to see ‘”The famous Frogga Lisa by Leonardo da Piggy!”‘

Froggy’s Baby Sisterfroggy's sisiter

Froggy is super excited for the new baby to be born. Of course, he wants a baby brother so he can teach him many things like soccer, swimming, etc. However, when his parents come home, he is introduced to his new baby sister, Pollywogilina. He can’t wait for her to grow up and get her legs so they can do many things together. In the mean time ‘”Pollywogilina was sitting on Mommy’s lap sucking on a bottle of cream of fly mush!”‘

Froggy Plays in The Band Froggy plays in the band

Froggy is super excited to play the saxophone at the Marching band contest. He gathers a band and they practice everyday. Frogilina joined the band too, but she did not play an instrument. However, “she twirled a baton high in the air.” Will the children/band win the prize?

Keep tuned for more books to come…

What am I reading?

Olive-and-the-bad-mood-2Today we went to the library; oh so many books to choose from. I decided to let my son choose three books and read them to me. My niece, sister in law, and I were his audience. Since most of the time I find myself reading the books in my mind, I told him it was his turn to read a book to his cousin, who is only 18 months. The books my son chose are the following:

Olive and the bad mood by, Tor Freeman

olive
Photo CC by, Amazon.com 

Talk about an angry cat! Olive lives a miserable life and is always mean to everyone else. Because of his bad mood, things seem to always happen to him as well. This story has a point…moral of story, treat everyone else the way you want to be treated!

The crocodile and Scorpion by, Rebecca and Ed Emberley

the crocodile and scorpion
Photo CC by, Mcmilliam 

I think we have all been in that situation where you give someone a hand, and they grab your foot. In other words, those who you help, end up betraying you! This is precisely what happened to a lazy crocodile who was minding his own business and sun bathing. The scorpion who wanted to cross the river asked the crocodile for help. The crocodile knew better not to do it, as he knew the scorpions are very poisonous. But the scorpion continued asking for help. Until…

… I suggest you read the book to find out what happened. Do you think the crocodile helped the scorpion?

Calm and Soothe by, Sanja Rescek

calm and soothe
Photo CC by, Amazon.com 

Remember those lullabies mommy use to sing before going to bed? This book has many of those lullabies, designed for infants…

Dog VS. Cat by, Chris Gall dog vs. cat

It is just impossible for a dog and a cat to live together, let alone share a room. This is the problem this two face when they are put in the same room. Cat won’t stop scratching. Dog won’t stop howling. It is always one or the other!

WWW (What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you will read next?)

pic
Photo CC by: Epic reads

Wow, as incredible as it sounds, I got done with the book, Counting the stars, by Lois Lowry in just four days! Since I started reading this book, I knew this was the kind of material I had been looking for. This book took place back in 1948 when Germany was invading many small countries in Europe.

As I read the book, I actually thought this was a nonfiction book. However, to my surprise, Lois, the author states that the characters are fake people,  but the story Annemarie, the protagonist tells is a true story told to Lois by a good friend of hers whom actually did live through all of these events. The way Lois gave life to her characters and the words she chose, made the book sound as if Annemarie was actually living all of this herself.

I strongly encourage this book to anyone interested in history. I think this book is appropriate for a fourth or fifth grader. I was actually doing some research, and found out there is a movie too. I have to say I am glad I got the opportunity to read the book first, and then I will try to find the movie and see what the differences are, if there are any. Most of the time I find myself very disappointed with the movie, especially, if I have read the book first. I guess my imagination was way better than the movie…

 

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Number the stars
Photo CC by: Amazon.com

What comes to your mind when you hear the word Nazi? Does it make you think of Hitler, Germany, or maybe WWII? How would you feel if you had to run from them and constantly hide, being a prisoner in your own home and having to obey many rules. These are just a few of the many obstacles Annemarie Johansen and her Jew friend, Ellen Rosen, had to struggle through at the age of 10 in the book, Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry.

When I was in High school, I clearly remember reading the book, Anne Frank, a Jew girl who lived through WWII and kept a diary of everything she experience and saw. I really enjoyed this book and its contents. All these time I have been reading many books, but nothing similar to Anne Frank. A few day ago I visited the library and looked through many books which had won the John Newbery Medal award. I was about to check them out and instead decided to ask the librarian for books about the Holocaust. This is how I ended up choosing this book, Number the Stars. 

As I began reading the first three chapters, I knew this was the book I had been looking for. It has been super hard to put it down, and many times I have found myself going to bed at 12 or 1am reading this book. I have enjoyed this book so much, that I am practically done with it. Tonight, I plan on reading the last two chapters I have left. So keep tuned to hear what this book is all about…

Thursday Quotables…

reading in the wild

I have started to read a new book, Reading in the Wild, (The book whisperer’s keys to cultivating life long reading habits) by Donalyn Miller. I chose this book to help me as a reader and future teacher to learn reading habits just like the book states. I believe that it is very important for every child to have the opportunity to learn to love reading. I hope that this book will give me ideas to practice myself and to apply to my future classroom as well.  

In regards to the meme for this week, we are supposed to highlight a great quote, line, or passage discovered during my reading each week. Whether it’s something funny, startling, gut-wrenching, or just really beautifully written.

As previously stated, I have just began reading this book and it started out with a great quote which gives the reader a lot to think about…

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, said Jojen. The man who never reads lives only one.”

—- Gorge R. R. Martin

 A dance with Dragons 

What I understand is that the person who reads many books will get to experience many great things reading can offer, such as: training the brain, gaining more knowledge, and most important of all, using the imagination!