Well, it’s that time of year again! I love reading all the best books lists at the end of the year. It’s wonderful to see some of the books I have loved over the year and also find some new gems to add to the library. If you’re looking to get some gifts for the holidays for the kids in your life or just looking for a great read, have a look at these fabulous lists. If you are buying books, consider supporting local bookstores such as Kidsbooks.
First off, check out this great list by my colleague, Elaine Su:
If you’re looking for some great Canadian choices, try this list by the Globe and Mail:
School Library Journal and Kirkus Reviews also publish a comprehensive list with several categories to meet the needs of all kinds of readers:
Hope you found something great to put on your list for 2020! Happy reading and please contact me if you have any questions or comments.
On Monday, Oct. 26th South Slope/BCSD participated in Drop Everything and Read (DEAR). Everyone was invited to wear their PJs and we all read in our classrooms and around the school after lunch. DEAR day is sponsored by the British Columbia Teacher Librarian’s Association (BCTLA) and we were one of many schools around the province who participated. It was also National School Library Day and we celebrated that, too. Many schools across the country have limited or no access to their school libraries and librarians due to COVID restrictions. I feel blessed at South Slope/BCSD to be part of a school community that has embraced the COVID protocols and that we are able to be able to provide access to the library for all our students.
This week the library, or rather the librarian (that’s me), will be visiting classrooms and reading “The Dot” by Peter Reynolds. September 15th”ish” is International Dot Day and we will be celebrating it by asking everyone to “Make your Mark” and “See where it takes you!” Everyone will create their own dot and we will display them in the hallway outside the gym.
Here are some of the Big Ideas we are exploring:
Language and story can be a source of creativity and joy.
Everyone has a unique story to share.
Exploring stories and other texts helps us understand ourselves and make connections to others and to the world.
Texts can be understood from different perspectives.
Core Competencies we are developing:
I can show a sense of accomplishment and joy.
I get new ideas or build on other people’s ideas.
I am kind to others.
Here are some videos of and about the book:
Watch “The Dot” on Tumblebooks . Click on the link on at the top right hand side of the blog under “Links”. In TumbleSearch, type in “The Dot”.
Watch author and illustrator, Peter Reynolds the story behind the story and how this book helped launch International Dot Day – a worldwide celebration of creativity.
Well, this unusual year has now come to a close. I hope you all have a wonderful summer and find time to rest and play. Here is a “virtual library” for you to explore over the summer. I hope you enjoy the activities and links for reading and more. See you in September!
This week in of our classrooms we have been reading Hair Love written by Matthew A. Cherry and illustrated by Vashti Harrison. The students really enjoyed this funny, heartfelt story of a African-American father learning how to do his daughter’s hair for a “special day”. Hair Love is also an Academy Award winning film! In this case, the movie came first and then the book. Students watched the movie, too, and were asked to look for and think about the similarities and differences. Hair Love is a great book and movie to share with our kids now to celebrate family, love and diversity.
Did you know that June is National Indigenous History Month? This week at school I shared a new book, Johnny’s Pheasant, with many classes. It was written by Cheryl Minnema who is a member of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe and and illustrated by Julie Flett who is a Cree-Metis author, illustrator and artist. Julie Flett is one of my favourite author/illustrators and we read her book, Birdsong, earlier in the year as part of our Canadian Picture Book of the Year read alouds.
Students we excited to read Johnny’s Pheasantand made lots of connections to our previous read aloud of Birdsong. They loved the beauty of both the words and illustrations. I’m sure Johnny’s Pheasant will be on everyone’s wishlist for check out in September.
In January 2020, Cheryl Minnema received the Charlotte Zolotow Award for Johnny’s Pheasant. The award is given annually to the author of the best picture book text published in the United States in the preceding year.
Exciting news, everyone! JK Rowling has released a new story online called The Ickabog. She will publish it online and release a chapter or more starting today and then for seven more weeks. It was written as a read aloud story but is suitable for 7-9 year olds to read on their own. Of course, there is no age limit on great stories. I’m looking forward to this new adventure and I hope you all enjoy it, too.
What is your passion? Music? Art? Science? Soccer? In my latest read aloud we learn about a character who sees the beauty of the world through math. I hope you enjoy Count on Me by Miguel Tanco. Click on the book to view. Ask your teacher for the password. This video includes ASL interpretation.
What math can you find in the world around you?
What are you passionate about?
For more math check out Which one Doesn’t belong: a website dedicated to providing thought-provoking puzzles. There are no answers provided as there are many different, correct ways of choosing which one doesn’t belong. Enjoy!