Monday, January 14, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Thanks Jen and Kellee at TEACH MENTOR TEXTS for hosting IT'S MONDAY! WHAT ARE YOU READING?

I finally feel like I am back in the habit of consistent reading.

H.I.V.E. by Mark Walden was my #bookgapchallenge book that was assigned by Tony Keefer.  I enjoyed the book although I did learn that I am not a fan of "assigned books" so being a little bitter as I read did not help.  I don't often read plot based adventures so Tony thought this would be  a good one for both Katherine and I.  I enjoyed it and shared it with my 4th graders right away. It is a good adventure for kids looking for a new series.

Nelson Mandela by Kadir Nelson is a gorgeous new picture book biography. I love anything by Kadir Nelson and was thrilled to see this new one.

Twelve Kinds of Ice by Ellen Bryan Obed was a huge surprise to me. I LOVED it and wasn't really planning too. I had heard so much about it that I wanted to read it but couldn't figure out what all of the hype was. The book is gorgeous.  It is about ice but also about family and tradition and home. The writing is gorgeous. I am not sure this is one kids will pick up on their own but it is definitely one I hope to share--so many possibilities with this as it is a pretty amazing book.

Endangered by Eliot Schrefer is a YA book that has been on my TBR stack for a while. I enjoyed it. It is a great story about a teenage girl and a bonobo that she befriends in the Congo.

Babymouse #17: Extreme Babymouse by Jennifer Holm and Matt Holm. I am happy every time a new Babymouse book is published. I ordered two copies of this for my classroom and I am so glad I did. It is busy making its rounds!  (And there is a fun little surprise in the book that kids are discovering as they read:-)

Chu's Day by Neil Gaiman is a new picture book that younger kids will enjoy.

A Splash of Red: The Life and Art of Horace Pippin by Jen Bryant and Melissa Sweet is another picture book biography that I am happy to have in my collection.

Black Dog by Levi Pinfold is becoming a new favorite. Every time I read it, I love it a little bit more. This is definitely one I'll share with kids in the next few weeks as we talk about theme. Such a sweet story with a big message.

Currently Reading
I am currently reading Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading by Kylene Beers and Bob Probst. I am trying to take my time so I can take it in. If I speed through it, I am afraid I will miss some of the brilliant things the authors say. This is definitely a must-read for teachers in grades 4-12. Lots of important thinking here.

My friend, Larry Swartz recommended the adult novel, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry: A Novel. I ordered it immediately because Larry knows books and I started it yesterday. Love it so far but a little worried about having started it. I don't have much reading time this week and this is not one I want to drag out!  I'd love to sit all day and read it cover to cover but I know I can't.


  1. Hmm. I will need to purchase Unlikely Pilgrimage AND Black Dog. I loved H.I.V.E., Twelve Kinds of Ice, and Extreme Babymouse. Have Notice and Note on the shelf, need to read it.

  2. I love all picture books created by Kadir Nelson - I am such a huge fan. Nelson Mandela sounds like a book that is not to be missed. I already borrowed Black Dog from our libraries but am slowly sifting through the picture book nominees first that didn't make it to the final seven cut - kind of immersing myself first before I dig into the big seven. :) I haven't read any of the Babymouse books yet and I feel like I'm missing out on a lot. Hopefully 2013 is the year I get to know them.

  3. I love the cover of Unlikely Pilgrimage. Definitely have to put that on my books I want to read list! Black Dog looks winter-y and delightful too. Beers and Probst worked in my district last year, so I'm excited to see the strategies they demonstrated in print and collected--always practical and useful.

  4. I heard a review of the Harold Fry book on NPR-It sounds wonderful. Maybe someday! I do love Black Dog, think it would be a good discussion with older students about the premise. Thanks, Franki

  5. The illustrations in Black Dog look really good.

  6. I loved the Mandela book, too. I shared I Have a Dream today with my 4th graders and they exclaimed over the the paintings. I, too, loved Twelve Kinds of Ice and Black Dog! I'll check out the Notice & Note!

  7. New Neil Gaiman picture book? My ears perked up like my dog listening for the treat box in the pantry. I agree that anything Kadir Nelson does is terrific.

  8. I also LOVE Black Dog. Such a fascinating book with those illustrations . . . I haven't shared it as a read aloud yet but am really looking forward to doing so. Endangered is a book I am hoping to get too this spring. Just read a great review on Teach Mentor Texts Blog (by Kellee)

  9. Anonymous9:19 PM

    This is the second time I have seen Black Dog today. I will have to check it out. I'm also interested in Notice and Note for my PD pile. Good stuff!

  10. Want to check out the Twelve Kinds of Ice book. I love the idea. Though it will be a stretch text for me being a native Floridian. I think of cubed or crushed, only two kinds of ice. I have Notice and Note on my shelf and it will be the next professional book that I read. I loved the live Notice and Note lessons that Kylene and Bob did with middle school students in my district last year. They were here as part of a literacy initiative last year for several pd days. We miss them, but will be good to slowly revisit their work.

  11. I absolutely loved Twelve Kinds of Ice...and know every kind as a native Manitoban. I even remember watching ice cutting on the river in the deep cold of January. Black Dog is wonderful and so beautifully illustrated! I'm eagerly awaiting delivery of Nelson Mandela and Chu's Day and I will definitely have to check out The Unlikely Pilgrimage! Thanks so much for the suggestion.

  12. I must find Black Dog and Twelve Kids of Ice. I am hoping to read Extreme Baby Mouse today as we are home early due to snow.


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