Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Walking and Listening to "The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary"

The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary by Laura Shovan
Recorded Books
3 hours, 24 minutes
Narrators:  Jonathan Todd RossKevin R. FreeJessica AlmasyJill FrutkinCherise BootheRachel BotchanStina NielsenRamon De Ocampo

The timing of my listening to this book could not have been better. I was just about to start talking to my fourth graders about novels in verse/poetic fiction when I began listening to this book, not even knowing that it fell into this category. I loved it and couldn't wait to share it with my students.

Miss Hill's eighteen fifth graders spend the year writing poetry to be placed in the school's time capsule at the end of the year. Their poems will be all that remains of Emerson Elementary as it is scheduled to be torn down at the end of the year. As the students write their poems, we get to know them, begin to care about them as we learn their ups and downs and see them grow as people. I loved the diversity of the students, not only their in home lives,  but also their cultural and religious differences. With such diverse group of students, not only can listeners make connections with and see themselves in the students but also build empathy for others. I also loved the nod to Prince and Let's Go Crazy. The author's poetry note at the end helps explain the various types of poems throughout the book, which poems model that type of poem and also tips on how to write that type of poem. I thought it  was genius to include this in the book.

Favorite Chapter Title: One Seat, Two Seats, We All Have New Seats

I visited someplace I never had before in my walking this week. I could see humpback whales spouting off in the distance.

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