This Halloween, Primary classes were ‘treated” to two stories . I read A Teeny Tiny Halloween, a new picturebook written by Lauren L. Wohl and illustrated by Henry Cole. It is loosely based on the old English ghost tale, The Teeny Tiny Woman so I read this traditional version first. Afterwards, the students shared what was similar and different between the two stories. It was a literary opportunity for children to hear a traditional folktale and a fragmented version of it.
Mystery books were promoted to the Intermediate classes and some saw the video version of an old cautionary tale told in verse titled The Spider and the Fly.
On Wednesday, October 19th, Rachelle Delaney, a local Children’s author came to Seaforth and did presentations to Divisions 4 to 10. Rachelle talked about the writing process , and how she gets her ideas for plot , setting and characters. She read and talked about her book, The Metro Dogs of Moscow which was a Red Cedar Book and which won The Chocolate Lily Award. The sequel to this book, The Circus Dogs of Prague is a YRCA Junior division book this school year. Rachelle’s delightful and insightful presentations have motivated many of the students to read her books. Another testament to how inspiring Author visits can be for children!
On Friday, June 10th , Mo Willems came to Vancouver, the only Canadian city he was visiting on his North American tour. Kidsbooks hosted the event and it was sold out within 24 hours so it was a real privilege to get a ticket to see him. I got a front row seat! He is as entertaining in person as he is on video. He made everyone put their phones and cameras away because he really wanted the audience to be fully engaged and be in the moment. He read The Thank You book with so much expression and then read us the draft copy of his next book. I am not going to do a book spoiler but to prepare you for it, get your mind thinking about all the words that end with ‘et’ and ‘ette’. Maybe brainstorm and make a list of words you know with those endings. This new book will be available next school year. After reading us the two books, he took a few questions and then signed books. At that point we could take photos. So here I am with Mo! I like to call it ‘Mo & Me!”. I also gave him Sarah L.’s journal entry about Elephant & Piggie being at the Seaforth Stampede Sports Day. After Mo reads it, I’m hoping he will take the time to contact Sarah or myself about it. Here is what she wrote:
All good things … and book series must come to an end! This is going to be a hard lesson for some of our young readers at Seaforth when I share some sad news from the literary world. With the publication of The Thank You Book, Mo Willems has announced that it will be his twenty-fifth and final Elephant & Piggie book. To mourn this sad event, we will participate in Thank-O-Rama month the week of May 24 to 27. We will do a variety of activities from the Thank-O-Rama website. The students at Seaforth want to Thank Mo for this wonderful and delightful series that hooks them into reading and gives them a love of books and reading! I want to Thank him, too!
Last Wednesday evening, Ms.Higgins went to see the author of one of the YRCA 2016 titles, Escape from Mr.Lemoncello’s Library , Chris Grabenstein which was hosted by Vancouver Kidsbooks. It was a delightful and informative presentation in which Mr. Grabenstein had children come up to the front to participate in some short quiz games. Of course, afterwards , participants received Lemon Drops! Ms.Higgins will be sharing what she heard to some of the Intermediate classes. To learn more about this entertaining author and his books, go to his website – http://chrisgrabenstein.com/
This month, part of the focus of the library program for primary students and some lower intermediate was using picturebooks to find out more about Black History in Canada and the United States. Ms. Higgins read a beautiful and powerful book by Jacqueline Woodson titled The Other Side inwhich two young girls in their own way defy the segregation in the southern United States and create a friendship. She also read Oscar Lives Next Door by Bonnie Farmer and Marie Lafrance which is a story inspired by Oscar Peterson’s childhood. Oscar Peterson was a world famous Jazz pianist and his childhood story is one of resiliency. Intermediate classes learned about Viola Desmond, often referred to as Canada’s Rosa Parks. Students viewed two video clips and did a compare and contrast activity of the two women. To learn more about Black History month in Canada go to the government website Black History Month
On Friday, January 29th , we were so fortunate to have Brandee Buble come and present her two books, O’Shae the Octopus and Jayde the Jaybird. She was thrilled to be back at her elementary school that holds a special place in her heart. She read from her two books and also inspired the primary students with some important messages of accepting and cherishing one’s differences. It was so cute that one student was so excited that we had Brandee coming for an author visit that she dated her weekly spelling test Brandee Buble Day, not Friday , Jan. 29th! Congratulations to the winners of the three book draws , Adib, Andren, and Demi. Here is Brandee’s Instagram message about her visit.
On Friday ,January 29th, Brandee Buble, a former Seaforth student, will be coming to read and present her two books to the primary classes.
She has written O’Shae the Octopus and Jayde the Jaybird. We are all looking forward to her visit as Seaforth holds a special place in her heart.
Nerdy Birdy by Aaron Reynolds was a big hit when Ms.Higgins read it to the primary classes last week. Students were given the opportunity to create their own nerdy birdy and add it to the telephone wires because as stated in the story: “there’s always room for another nerdy birdy.”
With Halloween at the end of the month, all things creepy and scary preoccupy our minds. So what better time than now to read a spine-chilling mystery book! We have a range of mystery books for all readers from picturebooks such as Sherlock Bones and the missing cheese by Susan Stevens Crummel, which I will be reading to some of the Primary classes next week, to some great mystery series for Intermediate students such as Sammy Keyes by Wendelin Van Draanen , Neil Flambe by Kevin Sylvester and Maggie Brooklyn by Leslie Margolis . There are great beginning chapter book series, too. A few of my favourites are a new series called Greetings from Somewhere by Harper Paris and of course, the A to Z Mysteries by Ron Roy.