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review 2018-03-09 03:41
The Story of Ferdinand
The Story of Ferdinand - Munro Leaf,Robert Lawson

The story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf tells the delightful account of a young bull named Ferdinand. With the story taking place sometime in Spain, the reader might assume that Ferdinand is destined to be a matador. However, young Ferdinand is unique. While his peers run, fight, and play, "Ferdinand likes to sit under his tree just so and smell the flowers" (Leaf). The simple illustrations by Newberry award winning illustrator, Robert Lawson, might seem plain - but but do not be deceived! Hidden gems and details beg the reader to revise the text. I would love to use this book to study Spanish culture. One of the more interesting ideas I found to accompany this text is a study on cork, which can be found here: https://www.weareteachers.com/8-fun-activities-celebrate-story-ferdinand/


Guided Reading - K

Lexile - AD760L

DRA - 18

AR - 3.7

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review 2018-03-03 21:53
Knight of Flames (Inheritance #2)
Knight of Flames (Inheritance Book 2) - Amelia Faulkner

You know that feeling when you're reading a good book and you sort of know where it's going and it goes there but it's still okay because you still had a good time getting there? But there's also this undercurrent of weird niggling at you the entire time and then you get to the last page and it sucker punches you in the brain and then you can't figure out if you're really excited or super dreading what's going to come next?



And all of a sudden everything you've read prior to that moment is put into this whole other context and it makes this horrible kind of sense and you don't know what to make of it? Yeah, that's me and this book.


This was going to be a solid four stars, and the first 95% of the book totally is. But now? Gotta raise it up a star. The author is toying with us, just because she can! I bet this is what Ms. Faulkner was doing as she was writing that page:



Laurence and Quentin are still figuring out their psychic powers and their relationship, and how to get past Quentin's various hangups with sex or anything sexual in nature. Along the way, Quentin gets an unexpected visitor, Ethan gets a boyfriend, and we get to meet new psychics. The other really starts to expand on this world while also giving us a little more background on Quentin. We don't get quite as much focus on Laurence, as this one is more Quentin-centric, but we still go back and forth on their POVs.


The flaws exist only because the characters are flawed, and to say more about it would be giving away too much of the plot. Let me just say, you'll yell at these characters like they're in a horror movie but at least Laurence is somewhat genre savvy. Quentin is as always tragically oblivious.


What else can I say? The author's geography of San Diego continues to prove good. Kind of off on our weather. May's usually not that hot, but freak heat waves do happen all year long so I'll give her that one.

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review 2018-02-27 04:28
Recreating Animals
Grandfather Tang's Story - Ann Tompert,Robert Andrew Parker

This story is about two fairy foxes told using tangrams. It is an endearing game between a grandfather and his granddaughter which reveals a story of magic, clever animals, and true friendship. I will read this story three times before providing them with tangrams. While reading it the 4th time, I will stop after each animal so the students can creating the animals. The lesson will consist of me ask questions about the shapes and which shapes make a new shapes. 


Reading Level: Lexile AD660L


Grades: 1-4th

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review 2018-02-22 23:35
Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London
Froggy Gets Dressed - Jonathan London, Frank Remkiewicz (Illustrator)

Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London is such a fun read for young readers! This book provides a great deal of exposure to onomatopoeia and dialogue. This is great for beginning readers because they can read it to themselves and become familiar with these literary devices. The vivid illustrations are also engaging for readers of all ages as it draws you in and keeps you wanting to keep reading. I also think this book does a wonderful job of sequencing. Froggy undresses and redresses several times in the story. This opens up the door for a lesson on sequencing.


I would use this in the classroom by asking students to write a story explaining how they get dressed for school in the morning. I would ask them to use adjectives to describe the color and style of the clothing they put on. I would also ask the students to include everything that they put on including socks and hair ties. In upper grades, I would ask students to include as much detail as which shoe they tie first, what do they button/zip, and more. At the end of the writing, I would encourage students to share their morning routine with their classmates so they can compare their routines with each other.

Guided Reading: K
Lexile: 300L
Accelerated Reader Level: 1.8
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review 2018-02-22 23:19
Duck for President by Doreen Cronin
Duck for President - Doreen Cronin,Betsy Lewin

Duck for President by Doreen Cronin does a phenomenal job of educating readers on the process of nominating and electing a person in office as well as gives an insight on the responsibility of the President. I love the concept of using animals rather than people in this story because children are more likely to be engaged. This also encourages imagination as animals do not truly have these roles but are being given human characteristics. I really enjoy how smoothly this book transitions from a conflict in the story, to nominating Duck for President, to election day, etc. The story line is written so well, readers may not even notice that they are learning in the process.


I would use this book in the classroom to introduce a lesson on electing a president or the roles of a president. After reading the book, I would ask students to make a poster that has a picture of a person in their lives (favorite TV show character, friend, family, teacher, etc.) who would make a great president and list words or phrases explaining why people should vote for them. These signs would then be displayed around the classroom and in a confidential voting, I would ask my team teachers to vote on their "Team President" based on the posters. The person who made the winning poster will get a shoutout and have their work displayed in the class e-newsletter but I will remind students that there will be more opportunities for student's work to be displayed in the future and that we should congratulate the "winner."


Lexile Measure: AD680L

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