Showing posts sorted by relevance for query cawp. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query cawp. Sort by date Show all posts

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Books I Learned About at CAWP/Literacy Connection Conference Saturday

Saturday, The Literacy Connection partnered with Columbus Area Writing Project for a one day conference event. The day was amazing and was just what I needed to regound myself as a teacher.  Sonia Nieoto, Asma Mobin-Uddin and Troy Hicks were the keynote speakers.  Local educators conducted concurrent sessions.  The day was wonderful. I was able to attend 3 keynotes and 3 sessions and they were all brilliant. I can't even begin to synthesize all that I learned so I thought I'd share some new books I discovered.

A book that Troy Hicks shared at the end of the day is a free ebook (or available for purchase in paper format) from MIT press is HANGING OUT, MESSING AROUND, AND GEEKING OUT: KIDS LIVING AND LEARNING WITH NEW MEDIA.  This book looks full of great information from case studies of kids. I downloaded the book last night and it is packed with info that can inform our teaching.  The trailer that Troy shared is below:

 I didn't expect to find that many new children's books because these presenters are my local friends--we talk books often and we all shop at the same place for books.  But, I found lots of great books I didn't know about! I am anxious to read these books soon.  Most of the books came from a session I attended on primary writing with Stella Villalba and Sharon Esswein. The session was brilliant and I tweeted one of my favorite quotes from the session.  Stella asked, "Teachers have reading & writing lives outside of school.How often are we intentional about sharing that with students?"

These are the books I discovered yesterday--books I think I'll have to buy eventually.  Most are not new but I had not seen or heard of them before. So fun to discover friends' favorites that are new-to-me!

Alphathoughts: Alphabet Poems by Lee Bennett Hopkins. I never really looked at this one because I didn't love the cover. But Sharon read a few of the poems to us in the session and I loved it. A great addition for both poetry and ABC books!

I am not sure how I've missed all of Anna Walker's books but I fell in love with them immediately.  Stella shared some stories from an author study they had done with these books.  Such a great author for young readers. I need too add these to our library!  I LOVE BIRTHDAYS was the one I picked up from the table but I really like all of them!

I love list books and I love Harriet Ziefert. I hadn't seen this book before: 41 USES FOR A GRANDMA and fell in love with it. 

I thought I had all of Cynthia Rylant's books but totally missed THE STARS WILL STILL SHINE. I ordered this one right after Sharon read it to the group.

One that I want to get from our library and NOTHING TO DO by Douglas Wood. I didn't have much time to read the book but I loved what I read as I flipped through it.  Great text and great illustrations. THE SECRET OF SAYING THANKS is another one I didn't know about by Douglas Wood.  This is one I'll have to get sometime soon.

And how I missed a book by one of my favorite poets, Kristine O'Connell George, is beyond me. But I will definitely need to add HUMMINGBIRD NEST to my personal collection. 

I love that I have so many friends who love books and who find, fall in love with, and share books that are new to me!  

Monday, December 05, 2011

Anna Walker

I am so happy when I find a new author that I love. Recently, I discovered Anna Walker, an author/illustrator from Australia. How I had missed her books is beyond me, but I am so glad that I've discovered them.  In October, when I attended the CAWP/Literacy Connection conference, I was able to hear Sharon Esswein and Stella Villalba (My World-Mi Mundo) speak about writing in the primary grades. They shared many, many books and I spent quite a bundle after their session.

My favorite find from the session was the set of "I LOVE..."(I Love Ollie) books by Anna Walker.  These are perfect books for K-1 readers and writers and I purchased the whole set for our school library.
One of the challenges is building a school library collection is in finding enough authentic,  quality picture books that new readers can read on their own.  Anna Walker's books have everything, in terms of support, that new readers need. And the books are fabulous.

In each of these books, Ollie (a lovable zebra) shares with us the reasons that he loves one specific thing--such as I LOVE TO SING, I LOVE TO DANCE, I LOVE BIRTHDAYS, I LOVE MY MOM and I LOVE MY DAD.  Each book focuses on one thing and follows the I LOVE pattern.

These are the PERFECT books to use with young students to introduce the idea of reading like a writer--really thinking about the decisions an author makes. For me, one reason for studying an author is to be able to think about what you can expect from this author in the future. Another is in thinking about what you can learn from the author to try in your own writing. Anna Walker's books are perfect for both of these things.

These books each follow a predictable pattern, they use sight vocabulary that new readers are familiar with. There is rhyming in the books and the pictures support the text.  And there is predictability across stories--Fred, the dog is a companion in each book. The beginnings and endings follow similar patterns across books.  The books provide lots for kids to notice and to love. With our first graders, I read aloud 3 of the books as we added on to the things we knew about the books.  They became fast favorites for every class. As these books invite writing, many students took time in library to create their own I LOVE books, after being inspired by Anna Walker. The books took on titles ranging from I LOVE BASKETBALL to I LOVE MERMAIDS.

I love Anna Walker and plan to buy every book she ever writes for kids. She so understands young children and writes to that audience so well.  It seems she is an Australian author/illustrator and I can't see to order some of her books here yet. I need to work on that.

Not only do I love Anna Walker's books, but I think we would be great friends if she were my neighbor.    I spent some time on her blog and it is a great celebration of so many things.  It is definitely a blog that will go into my reader.  So happy to discovered this new-to-me author!