Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Bruins Meet Adam Gidwitz (Via Skype That is!)

"If you want to laugh and get nightmares, read his books!"
"Go Grimm!"
"His books are awesome!"

This is just a small taste of the praise that The Bruins gave Adam Gidwitz after our Skype session with him. It all started about a month and half ago when I noticed that The Bruins were racing to the "G" shelf in the chapter book section. Their teacher was reading them, A Tale Dark and Grimm. The kids were doing two things, some were reading ahead of their teacher, dying to know what happened next while others had already finished the book and were ready for In A Glass Grimmly. I loved how excited they were for these books, so the minute I saw Adam Gidwitz was offering Skype sessions, I jumped right on it.

We started off with a story, the Grimm/Gidwitz version of Snow White. Let me just say this, Adam is a natural storyteller. He gets kids. He grossed us out. He let us know what to do incase we were too grossed out or scared. He made us laugh at the exact right moments. He was expressive. He was phenomenal.
We then had the opportunity to ask him some questions. The child below asked, "If you were stuck on a desert island and could only take one fairytale with you, what would it be?" The answer? The Three Golden Hairs
Or this question:
We found out how he selects the Grimm tales that he puts in his books, how many times he had to edit In A Glass Grimmly (the number is astonishing), how he got into writing, what he likes and doesn't like about being an author. It was a great experience.

Thank you so much Adam for taking the time out your evening to Skype with us. It is something that we will never forget and will be talking about for a long time.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

PebbleGo, Poetry and Kindergarteners

It's no secret that I am a huge fan of PebbleGo. I love showing the children how easy it is to use, especially the kindergartners. After a lesson on how to use it and some time for exploration, I thought why not create a research/poetry project around PebbleGo. The teachers were on board, the kids were excited and I was raring to go!
First, each group had to chose an animal they were curious about or wanting to know more about. The only rule I had in selecting an animal was that the animal had to be on PebbleGo. They made their selections and then we checked to see if they were indeed on  PebbleGo. Out of the 63 groups I had researching, not one wasn't able to do the animal they had originally selected. That just goes to show how many animals are featured in the PebbleGo Animal module. Love it!
They immediately got to work, learning all that they could about their animals. Some children even followed me throughout the library sharing facts as they learned them. Many of the facts were new to me too.
After all the information was gathered, the children set to work writing cinquain poems about their animals. It was amazing to see them jump right in and be excited to write poetry.
After the poems were written, the children shared them with each other. But why not share them with even more people? The children came back to library to not only draw their animals on their poems, but to record them reading their poems as well.
We hope you enjoy the end result!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

May Bulletin Boards

Summer is quickly approaching and since many people enjoy traveling in the summer, Trudie created this amazing, "One world, many stories" bulletin board. It not only highlights folklore from around the world but also has figurines placed throughout it to represent things that the country is known for.

 Greg is trying his best to celebrate Mother's Day by wearing some flowers in his hair. Unfortunately that still doesn't make him happy.
Speaking of Mother's Day, our two side bulletin board feature Mom books. I tried to spruce it up with some of the flowers used in last months giant bulletin board.
Happy Birthday to Dan Yacarrino!
Who doesn't love summer? I repurposed and piece of a snowman to make this sun. The kids think the sun is hilarious looking. They do have a point.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Walking and Listening to "Space Case"

Gibbs, Stuart. Space Case. 6 cd's. 6 hours, 28 minutes. Simon and Schuster Audio. 2014, $29.99, ISBN: 978-1442376397.

Life on Moon Base Alpha was not anything like the brochure had described it. The food was awful, there were only six toilets in the whole facility and children aren't allowed to go out onto the moon's surface. Dashiell is miserable and wishes his parents, famous scientist, had never agreed to come here. That all changes when late one evening Dash overhears Dr. Holtz's conversation about an incredible discovery that he will be announcing to everyone in the morning.  Dash soon learns that he may never know what that discovery is since Dr. Holtz's body is found dead on the moon's surface. Everyone on Moon Base Alpha chalks Dr. Holtz's death to a tragic accident, Dash however is convinced it is murder. Against the wishes of some on M.B.A., Dash begins to investigate and stumbles upon a whole lot more than a murderer.

Gibson Frazier does a great job narrating this book, the characters were easily distinguishable and the pacing well done. I was especially pleased by his correct pronunciation of Hawaiian words. They get butchered often, but not in this audiobook. 

Sidenote: I loved the space disco type music at the beginning of the book. 

Favorite Chapter Title: Space Jerks

Dash is from the Big Island of Hawaii. I am from a different island and love walking through the beach every day and seeing the changing tide pools. This particular afternoon the tide was rising.