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1. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: July 18

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Topics this week include authors, book lists, the Cybils, common core, aging, ebooks, apps, growing bookworms, kidlitcon, reading, writing, play, schools, libraries, and summer reading.

Books and Authors

Stories from authors about school visits "gone terribly wrong" at Wild Things blog http://ow.ly/zcwJO  @SevenImp @FuseEight

75 Years Old, Still Showing off her Scar, fun details about Madeline from @SevenImp + @FuseEight at Wild Things blog http://ow.ly/z94Jk 

Book Lists and Awards

Amazon-backed Booktrust Best Book Awards‘ Lifetime Achievement Award turned down by Allan Ahlberg | @TheBookseller http://ow.ly/z3OLT 

The Wildest (bold + unique) Children’s Books of 2014 as picked by @100scopenotes http://ow.ly/zcxat  #kidlit

Teen blogger Summer from @miss_fictional looks back on Favorite Books from her Childhood http://ow.ly/z5flg  #kidlit

Who knew that there could be a list of Top 5 Picture Books about Ninjas? @rosemondcates could! http://ow.ly/z3KJl  #kidlit

Thanks! RT @145lewis: #CYBILS are an amazing resource Looking for summer reading ideas? http://dadtalk.typepad.com/cybils/finalists/ … #kidlit #edchat #elemed

Common Core and STEM

#CommonCore Becomes Touchy Subject for Governors Group, reports @WSJ, as both parties are internally split on CC http://ow.ly/z5fA0 

Tap the STEM Resources in Your Community! | ALSC Blog post for librarians by @amyeileenk http://ow.ly/z3KzZ 

Diversity

RT @tashrow 5 Stereotypes Positive Aging Picture Books Avoid | Lindsey McDivitt http://buff.ly/1zmZLk9  #kidlit

eBooks and Apps

RT @TWhitford: Great Apps To Introduce Coding to Young Kids http://goo.gl/uUdGX0  via @mattBgomez

Malorie Blackman: ‘I love gadgets, but e-reading has to be carefully handled’ | @GuardianBooks http://ow.ly/z3P8z  via @PWKidsBookshelf

Growing Bookworms

What Do Phonics, Phonemic Awareness and Decoding Mean? @CoffeeandCrayon has the scoop http://ow.ly/zeLEb  #literacy

How #Comics Create Life-Long Readers -- @MaryAnnScheuer interview with @jenniholm http://ow.ly/zeLPW  #kidlit #literacy

Teaching My Daughters to Read -- Part III, Phonics from @ReadingShahahan http://ow.ly/zcvyn  #literacy

RT @LiteracySpeaks: 5 Simple Ways to Improve Reading Comprehension from This Reading Mama! http://fb.me/6BtWnEOln 

Fun times @everead | How I Stopped My Children's Whining with Story Club http://ow.ly/z5eUD  #literacy

KidLitCon

KidlitCon2014_cubeBOOM: And we are LIVE! Why you should attend this year's KidLitCon, from co-organizer Tanita Davis, FindingWonderland http://ow.ly/zcvbM 

The registration form for #KidLitCon14 Oct. 10-11 in Sacramento is now live: http://ow.ly/zc0lr  A great way to see friends + talk books

October will be here soon, soon, soon — @bkshelvesofdoom is coming to #KidLitCon14 Are you? http://ow.ly/z3GYs 

RT @CBethM: The 8th Annual @KidLitCon - Spending Time Face-to-Face with Kindred Spirits by @JensBookPage #nerdybookclub http://wp.me/p21t9O-1zS 

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

On having (and integrating) multiple Reading Lives by Kristin McIlhagga @TeachChildLit @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/z94kV 

Cultivating Curiosity, on love of stories vs. love of words at So Obsessed With blog http://ow.ly/z94SO  via @catagator

Food for thought at Stacked: Growing Up, Leaving Some Books (Narnia) Behind by @kimberlymarief http://ow.ly/zi3Ac  #kidlit

Why Book Reviewers Would Make Awesome Authors, by @Miss_Fictional http://ow.ly/zcvDd 

A proposal from @100scopenotes | All Middle Grade Novels Should Be 192 Pages. No Exceptions. Thoughts? http://ow.ly/zcvYJ 

Here's what @medinger thinks about @100scopenotes idea for Putting a Stop to Middle Grade Novel’s Increasing Girth http://ow.ly/zcwej 

Confessions Of A Binge Reader (Or, How I Read So Much) | Ryan Holiday at Thought Catalog http://ow.ly/z3LKY  via @tashrow

Why Readers, Scientifically, Are The Best People To Fall In Love With @EliteDaily http://ow.ly/z3NZQ  via @librareanne

On Kids

How Much Activity Do Our Students Need? asks @katsok How do you help kids who can't sit still, in era of less recess? http://ow.ly/z92pA 

Did What You Played as a Kid Influence Who You Became as an Adult? asks @FreeRangeKids http://ow.ly/z933H 

Powerful post @KirbyLarson by Michelle Houts on adults looking back and regretting childhood acts of bullying http://ow.ly/z3K36 

Schools and Libraries

Bridging the Gap: Making #Libraries More Accessible for a Diverse Autistic Population | @sljournal http://ow.ly/z3Omk 

Corporal Punishment in Schools: Can it be Justified? @TrevorHCairney thinks it's not the right approach http://ow.ly/zi3el 

Top 10 Ways to Turn Classroom into a Hotbed of Enthusiastic Readers by @megangreads + @muellerholly @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/z5eFi 

Summer Reading

This could keep us busy for the rest of the summer! 50 Fabulous Movies based on Children's Books from @rosemondcates http://ow.ly/zcvGP 

#SummerReading Tip20 @aliposner Set up your vacation accommodations in ways that make literacy more likely to occur http://ow.ly/z3LbF 

#SummerReading Tip21 @aliposner Encourage your kids to author “vacation books” when you are traveling this summer http://ow.ly/z5eOF 

#SummerReading Tip25 @aliposner | Read the SAME BOOK that your child is reading independently + discuss it together http://ow.ly/zeM9u 

#SummerReading Tip26 @aliposner | Try to connect reading to your kids’ summer activities http://ow.ly/zi3mT #literacy

Reading Is Fundamental Study Says Summer Reading Is Not Priority | reports Lauren Barack @sljournal http://ow.ly/z3OeW  @RIFWEB

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook

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2. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: July 3

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. I am posting a day early this week because of the July 4th holiday. Topics this week include: authors, awards, book lists, common core, growing bookworms, events, kidlitcon, publishing, teaching, libraries, and summer reading.

Authors

Rest in Peace, Walter Dean Myers. Here's an appreciation from Tanita Davis at Finding Wonderland http://ow.ly/yIbNs

Just Walk Away: Authors and Illustrators Who Do — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/yIBxa #kidlit

Book Lists and Awards

Roger Sutton makes some excellent points in this @HornBook editorial about new ALSC policy on communication by judges http://ow.ly/yFSbj

RT @CynLeitichSmith: Growing Int'l #Latino Book Awards Reflect Booming Market http://nbcnews.to/1nPPLbF via @NBCNews

2014 Guardian Children’s Prize Longlist | @tashrow has the list http://ow.ly/yFrdp

Children's Literature at SSHEL | #kidlit recommendations for Independence Day: Remembering the Revolution http://ow.ly/yFJcy

Stacked: Get (sub)Genrefied: Alternate History @catagator http://ow.ly/yIBXO #BookList

A few Seek and Find Picture Books, recommended by @greenbeanblog http://ow.ly/yIBq5 #kidlit

Very nice list! 14 Children's Books that Challenge Gender Stereotypes | @momandkiddo #BookList http://ow.ly/yCaBW

Top Ten Books for Young Readers about Encountering Obstacles by @MrazKristine @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/yCcaz

2014 Mind the Gap Awards (books ignored by ALA awards) from @HornBook http://ow.ly/ywTV1 via @tashrow

Common Core / Literacy

#CommonCore IRL: In Real Libraries -- 2014 ALA Presentation from @MaryAnnScheuer + friends http://ow.ly/yFrql

Higher Ed Administrators Seek To Stem States’ Rush Away From #CommonCore @LibraryJournal via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/yv1kk

Spreading the Good Word about Visual #Literacy @SevenImp chats with Francoise Mouly @KirkusReviews http://ow.ly/yubPV

Events, Programs and Research

RIF_Primary_Vertical"children spend nearly 3 times as many hours weekly watching TV or playing video games as they do reading" | @RIFWEB http://ow.ly/yIALH

Sad! The World Book Night project has been suspended, reports @bkshelvesofdoom http://ow.ly/yIAzA

Book drive for unaccompanied immigrant children kicks off July 10 reports @latimes via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/yFSo6

Growing Bookworms

One of many reasons to read aloud | Children’s Picture Books Use More Sophisticated Words Than You | Michaels Read http://ow.ly/yIBgc

Why dialogue is important to kids' comprehension development from @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/yudra #literacy

RT @PapaJFunk: @JensBookPage This story inspired me more than anything http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/21/fashion/21GenB.html … I'll read every night to my kids while they're in my house...

Kidlitosphere

KidlitCon2014_cubeCall for session proposals @charlotteslib -- #Kidlitcon 2014: Blogging #Diversity in Young Adult and Children’s Lit http://ow.ly/yIAlO

The call for session proposals for #KidLitCon14 is live! Deadline for submissions is 8/1. Theme: blogging #diversity http://ow.ly/yIbCJ

Celebrating @MrSchuReads with a Donation to @ReadingVillage, from @MaryLeeHahn + @frankisibberson http://ow.ly/yFrhx

Miscellaneous

Interesting thoughts @haleshannon on the segregation of ideas (choosing to only hear from people w/ similar ideas) http://ow.ly/yIArf

Interesting article on the cost to our productivity of distractions from Facebook push updates, etc. @WSJ (login req) http://ow.ly/yC8Td

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

Bertelsmann Getting Out of Book Retailing, reports @wsj (login req) http://ow.ly/yC9Ks #Publishing

Powerful post on books as Lifelines by Heather Preusser @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/ywV9c

Schools and Libraries

Teachers should cry in class when reading poignant stories ... Michael Morpurgo says @TelegraphBooks @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/yFSxJ

Interesting! Pew Research Center – 7 Surprises About Libraries | reported by @tashrow http://ow.ly/yC9TN @PewInternet

Save libraries by putting them in the pub says man tasked by Government to save them The Independent via @bookpatrol http://ow.ly/yx0FW

Summer Reading

Fizz, Boom, Read: Library #SummerReading Programs Blend Learning with Fun and Prizes | @sljournal http://ow.ly/yFICh

Jumpstart your summer adventure – Dig into reading, suggests @wendy_lawrence http://ow.ly/yCbNR #SummerReading

Fun idea! @aliposner Tip-a-Day #5: Designate a place outside your home specifically for #SummerReading outings http://ow.ly/yucI1

#SummerReading Tip-a-Day #6: Take your kids on a “summer is here” new book-getting mission! | @aliposner http://ow.ly/ywVze

#SummerReading Tip#7 @aliposner | Make sure your kids have reading STARs – Space, Time, Access to books, and Rituals http://ow.ly/yzTvR

#SummerReading Tip #8 @aliposner | Create an open-faced book display somewhere in your house http://ow.ly/yzTAI

The Ultimate #SummerReading List for Teachers from @Scholastic via @mattbgomez http://ow.ly/ywSXv 

I love this one! #SummerReading Tip #9 from @aliposner | Create an outside reading spot at your home | http://ow.ly/yCbkU

#SummerReading Tip #10 @aliposner : Make sure kids have easy access to tools for written response to books http://ow.ly/yFrJw

#SummerReading Tip #11: Stock up on “Barebooks” materials for fun and authentic summer writing | @aliposner http://ow.ly/yIBDa

Five Tips for Summer-Long Learning - Tina Chovanec from @ReadingRockets @FirstBook http://ow.ly/yFrbS #SummerReading

Macy’s and @RIFWEB Aim to Boost Summer Reading (hint: only 17% of parents think it’s a priority!), says @StorySnoops http://ow.ly/yCbw3

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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3. Get Out Your Calendars! It’s June Planning Time!

If we do nothing else, we do this one thing…Read this post to find out what it is!

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4. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: June 20

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter over the past two weeks @JensBookPage. I have a lot of links because I was traveling last week, and wasn't able to do a post. Topics include book lists and awards, common core, diversity and gender, growing bookworms, kidlitosphere, reading, writing, schools, libraries, and summer reading.

Book Lists and Awards (find other lists in the Summer Reading section below)

10 Books For Kids Who (think they) Hate Reading by Lisa Graff in @HuffPostBooks http://ow.ly/y9Klq via @tashrow

Cool Correspondence | Great Books About Writing Letters | @sljournal #booklist http://ow.ly/yeCXi #kidlit

Always interesting | Newbery / Caldecott 2015: The Summer Prediction Edition from @fuseeight http://ow.ly/y9Ovj #kidlit

Ten Fantastic Father-figures in middle grade science speculative fiction from Views From the Tesseract http://ow.ly/ybPhK #kidlit

I love it! A Tuesday Ten: Incredible Introverts in #kidlit science fiction + fantasy | Views From the Tesseract http://ow.ly/xWOyZ

Congratulations to @gregpincus | The 14 Fibs of Gregory K is deservedly on the Bank Street Best Children's Books list http://ow.ly/ybO3d

Another fun set of lists from @catagator Stacked | Microtrends in YA Fiction (like being stuck in elevators) http://ow.ly/y9L6p #yalit

Semi-Grown-Up Gumshoes: Three Adult-Market Girl Detectives. http://goo.gl/A5QZmW @bkshelvesofdoom

Fun! RT @tashrow Cameron McAllister’s top 10 amazing machines in children’s books | Children’s books http://buff.ly/1ulw6o4  #kidlit

Common Core

Math: "a lens through which we can see the world better", Jordan Ellenberg quoted in post by Marc Aronson #CommonCore http://ow.ly/ybOwD

Cut to the Core: #CommonCore Is a Hot Topic at Trade Shows http://ow.ly/xWP9y @PublishersWkly

Testing (Again), the Gates Foundation, and Curriculum by Mary Ann Cappiello at The Uncommon Corps http://goo.gl/v6NzfJ

Great Kid Books: #CommonCore IRL: Digital Resources for students studying Colonial America http://ow.ly/xFrGv @MaryAnnScheuer

Diversity + Gender

Diverse Books – on why we ALL need them! by @BooksYALove http://ow.ly/xNviZ  #WeNeedDiverseBooks

The Brown Bookshelf shares message from @RIFWEB | how + why to choose good multicultural children's books http://ow.ly/ybPY7  #diversity

#Diversity in Publishing: Next Steps from the Discussion from @thetoast http://ow.ly/xWPmL via @PWKidsBookshelf

Useful resource from Grace Lin | A Cheat Sheet for Selling #Diversity in books http://ow.ly/xQBH2 via @FuseEight

First Book Pledges to Buy Diverse Books in response to #WeNeedDiverseBooks @sljournal http://ow.ly/xNQUI @FirstBook

Interesting question from @haleshannon squeetus: Is anyone really "able-bodied"? Disability as continuum http://ow.ly/xNqjk #diversity

The Muscle-Flexing, Mind-Blowing Book Girls Will Inherit The Earth : Monkey See : @NPRBooks http://ow.ly/xNBBj via @tashrow

Growing Bookworms

How YA Books Engender a True Love of Reading in My Students | Tina Yang @PubPerspectives http://ow.ly/yeKbS via @PWKidsBookshelf #yalit

So true! "It doesn’t take fine literature to hook a kid for life." @LisaGraff @NerdyBookClub on keeping reading fun http://ow.ly/yerfH

"Reading should not be a chore." On the use of apps that force kids to log book time to earn screen time @salon http://ow.ly/y9H50

Are fathers better at bedtime stories than mothers? - @TelegraphNews via @librareanne http://ow.ly/xWQKo

#DadsRead Campaign Celebrates Fathers Reading to Kids | @sljournal @ZoobeanForKids @goodmenproject http://ow.ly/xWQaU

"I ... credit my husband's love for literature with ... Sprout's enthusiasm for books." @SproutsBkshelf for #DadsRead http://ow.ly/xWOPe

#DadsRead Because Dads are Awesome —adorable photos from @fuseeight for @ZoobeanForKids + @goodmenproject effort http://ow.ly/xNVAC

Raise A Reader: A Parent Guide to Reading for Ages 3-5 | @Scholastic http://ow.ly/xNEqc via @librareanne #literacy

Series books for summer pleasure reading - This is the post for parents by @pwbalto http://goo.gl/fqsJNF #kidlit

How to encourage students to read for pleasure: teachers share their top tips | Teacher Network via @librareanne http://ow.ly/xFsHm

Kidlitosphere

The scoop from @100scopenotes | #Bookaday-gate Resolved! @donalynbooks #BookADay #BookADayUK http://ow.ly/xNqzn

For her 200th Post, Stephanie Whelan shares First Impressions Through 100 Favorite First Lines in #kidlit http://ow.ly/y9K4w

On Reading, Writing, Publishing

An Art Exhibit Honors 75th anniversary of 'Madeline' - @WSJ http://ow.ly/xWQ0s via @PWKidsBookshelf

The fault in our aesthetic pigeonholing: Who cares if grown-ups read young-adult fiction? - @GlobeAndMail http://ow.ly/xWPGs

Where, What, How, and Why Teens Do and Don’t Read | Consider the Source | Seeta Pai @CommonSense Media in @sljournal http://ow.ly/xNR5V

Really? Are We Still Genre Shaming People For The Books They Like? Lauren Davis at io9 http://ow.ly/xQCCh via @gail_gauthier

This is hilarious: "adults should be ashamed to read children’s literature!" Satire from Marjorie Ingall http://ow.ly/xQBet @FuseEight

More great stuff! Ten Reasons To Read YA (No Matter What Age You Are) from @Gwenda http://ow.ly/xNtT5 #yalit

Can you infer an author's interests sometimes? Check out Cats, Dogs and Other Authors’ Favorite Motifs @read4keeps http://ow.ly/xNqL6

Schools and Libraries

A teacher says: "you continue the practice of reading aloud because it is right" @Shoulded @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/xNrFc

Ways that kindergarten teachers can foster the love of literacy in kids | Jennifer Schwanke @ChoiceLiteracy http://ow.ly/xNO2h

"As a teacher, I see the importance of caring, compassionate, and dedicated librarians" @JustinStygles @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/xNCt9

When You Know Better: A Journey to Authentic Book Clubs (learning from @donalynbooks ) by @jenbrittin @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/y9KvH

Rethinking Teaching Choices, some thoughts on Accelerated Reader programs from @katsok http://ow.ly/y9Mce

Press Release Fun: Teachers Are Givers Contest from Walden Media highlighting release of The Giver movie — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/ybOSC

I love @lochwouters descriptions of her annual Library Camp-Out programs. Such a fun way to grow bookworms! http://ow.ly/yegbW

The loss of a school's librarian, from the librarian's point of view, sadly, Zoe @playbythebook http://ow.ly/yeuVb

UpClose: Designing 21st-Century Libraries | How we were vs. are now using libraries @LibraryJournal http://ow.ly/yeCND

Good news! RT @tashrow Libraries see light after years of cuts http://buff.ly/1ulvqiq #libraries

Summer Reading

Great stuff! Top 10 Ways to Enjoy Reading This Summer by @jamibookmom @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/xNth2 #GrowingBookworms

10 Tips for Getting Kids Reading This Summer #SummerReading @5m4b http://ow.ly/xWOYj #literacy

Great photos! Top 10 Just Right #SummerReading Nook Ideas from @growingbbb http://ow.ly/y9JYf

BeBookSmartSigh! New Survey from @RIFweb Finds Only 17% of Parents Make Reading a Top Priority for Summer http://bit.ly/1iHaziD

8 Tips to Prevent the #SummerReading Slide from @growingbbb http://ow.ly/yeqPb #literacy

RAISING A READER Organization Offers Tips for Getting Children to Read During Summer Vacation http://ow.ly/xNwmU via @tashrow

I'm loving this series by @MaryAnnScheuer | Here are #SummerReading favorites for Kindergarteners http://ow.ly/y9KVc #kidlit

Lots of ideas in #SummerReading favorites: 1st grade suggestions from @MaryAnnScheuer http://ow.ly/y9K9R #kidlit

#SummerReading favorites: 2nd grade suggestions compiled by @MaryAnnScheuer http://ow.ly/y9JST #kidlit

Reading is fun! #SummerReading favorites from @MaryAnnScheuer | 3rd grade suggestions http://ow.ly/yeqca #kidlit

12 #SummerReading lists by transportation category (inc. rocketship) from @NPR http://ow.ly/ybPEl #bookyourtrip via @bkshelvesofdoom

#Diverse #SummerReading Picks For Kids from Michael Martin @npr via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/xNPPB

Stacked with a literal twist on "Summer" Reads, 2014 Edition ( #yalit with summer in the title) http://ow.ly/xNrTe @catagator

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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5. Force Field for Good and a Giveaway!

Learn about Barry Lane's newest book, Force Field for Good and enter for the giveaway!

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6. Writing Inspiring Nonfiction for Kids and Common Core

Two weeks ago when I read the latest article about the Common Core in the New York Times titled Common Core, in 9-Year-Old Eyes, I knew this would be the topic of my last post. Things have sure changed in the last six years. When Linda Salzman first started this nonfiction blog and invited nonfiction writers from all areas to write a monthly post, I was all about speaking out about art and creativity books for kids. Now, the popular nonfiction buzzwords are Common Core, STEM, digital publishing, marketing, and graphic novels. These were main topics discussed at last weekend’s Second Annual 21st Century Children's Nonfiction Conference --- as pointed out in this Publisher’s Weekly article about the conference.

In the aforementioned New York Times article, 9-year-old Chrispin Alcindor had been a star student but was struggling with math under the new Common Core teaching and was worrying about not passing to the next grade. I was drawn into his story by “his dream of becoming an engineer or an architect, to one day have a house with a pool and a laboratory where he would turn wild ideas about winged cars and jet packs into reality.” Chrispin’s excitement towards learning changed, as he grew frustrated by the new Common Core math. His enthusiasm was crushed. His dream of "walking across the stage at graduation in sunglasses and white sneakers, claiming his award and basking in the applause of the entire school" banished from his mind.

Trish Matthew, Chrispin’s teacher at Public School 397 in Brooklyn, saw the frustration in her classroom. The article continued, “Many struggled with basic math skills. Ms. Matthew, concerned about morale, called each student to her desk at the beginning of the year. “Please don’t think you are a failure,” she told them, one by one.”
I was so touched and moved by Ms. Matthew’s actions, which prompted writing this post and fueled my final comments. 

Last week, Arne Duncan went on CBS This Morning to talk about the Common Core. If you missed it, I’ll post it here.
And, if you're interested in reading a few pros and cons on the Common Core, check out the 505 comments on the New York Times article. Warning: it gets a little heated.

Recently, I've noticed while sitting down with editors to discuss new book projects, the Common Core is often mentioned. They highlight new book projects that have sold because they support the Common Core---fodder for reader discussions on why they thought the author wrote the book, compare and contrast aspects within the story, etc.
As I set off to work on the next chapters in my writing career, while the Common Core and their writing strategies will be in the back of my mind, inspiring young readers will be my main focus. Inspiring them to think. Inspiring them to achieve whatever they want to be. Inspiring them to be creative. Inspiring them to dream.
I will be continuing my blog posts on my website: AnnaMLewis.  Please check there for my next posts and the latest book news.
Here’s to Interesting (and Inspiring) Nonfiction for Kids!

0 Comments on Writing Inspiring Nonfiction for Kids and Common Core as of 6/27/2014 5:31:00 PM
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7. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: April 25

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. We are light on book lists this week, but heavy on events (World Book Night, Children's Choice Awards, National Poetry Month, etc.). 

Authors

Author Tanita Davis on why she's supporting the ALTERED PERCEPTIONS anthology in support of author Robison Wells http://ow.ly/w84Wy

squeetus: What do writers and mental illness have in common? Why @haleshannon is participating in Altered Perceptions http://ow.ly/w6a6N

Book Lists

A Tuesday Ten: Speculative Environmentals | Views From the Tesseract http://ow.ly/w5qyf #booklist #kidlit

11 Jewish Folktales for Kids from @momandkiddo http://ow.ly/w00w3 #kidlit #booklist

Diversity + Gender

Diversity in #KidLit: 7 must reads from @rosemondcates "you can find the uniqueness of each character while relating" http://ow.ly/w83Ej

A Diverse Dozen in #yalit http://ow.ly/w03aO #booklist @diversityinya

CCBlogC: Same Old Story: The Stats on Multicultural Literature http://ow.ly/w3xrF #diversity

Heartening post @Freakonomics on father/daughter initiative to encourage McDonalds to not make gender assumptions http://ow.ly/w3z6C

"it’s our job to represent humanity in literature. And humanity is #diverse" | @haleshannon on "Neutral characters" http://ow.ly/w02g2

Boys, Reading and Misogynistic Crap | @tashrow takes on Jonathan Emmett's recent Times of London piece http://ow.ly/vZZz1 #literacy

Events

World Book Night (tonight!) and a Proper Celebration of the Day of Shakespeare’s Birth — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/w5qiK

Voice your choice! Voting for @CBCBook's Children's & Teen Choice Book Awards is open through May 12: http://ccbookawards.com #CCBA14

SFW-logo-with-2014-dateIs anyone participating in Screen-Free Week 2014, May 5-11? | @CommercialFree Childhood Campaign http://ow.ly/w3wZw

Can you commit to 20 min of reading as a family for 20 days? #Read20@jendonn @5M4B is taking @Scholastic Challenge http://ow.ly/w01Qd

Celebrating Earth Day: A focus on Molly Bang's science picture books (ages 4-10) from @MaryAnnScheuer http://ow.ly/w01jW #kidlit

Poetry Challenge for Kids {Week 4} from @momandkiddo for #NationalPoetryMonth http://ow.ly/vVOlL

Growing Bookworms

Teaching Kids How to Take Care of Books - @growingbbb http://ow.ly/w8451 #GrowingBookworms

7 Book-Related Things I’d Like to Destruct by Here Comes Destructosaurus author Aaron Reynolds | @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/w5qdK

Another well-put reminder: "All books are worthy of being read. Just let kids read" by @mentortexts @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/w00Ld

Study finds mothers share rich Information when Reading Picture Books (narrative and non) reports @tashrow http://ow.ly/w815v #literacy

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

"No matter how long a book has been out, the first time you read it, it’s new to you" Michael Guevara @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/w84sR

Parenting

Literacy, families and learning: Fifteen Creative Ideas to Try During Holidays from @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/w5qNy

Schools, Libraries, and Homeschooling

12 Big Ideas About Homeschooling from @PenelopeTrunk @escapeadulthood http://ow.ly/w82ci

Growing Our Reading Community: Learning from Older Readers (on reading buddies) by @cathymere http://ow.ly/w02Cw

"the books our kids want to read, and the books we want to share", Mumbai school librarian @ShirinPetit @KirbyLarson http://ow.ly/w82HQ

The joy of sharing (recommending) books, by Hong Kong Academy teacher librarian @tgaletti @KirbyLarson http://ow.ly/w8349

Going to the #Library Gives You the Same Boost as Getting a Raise! | @tashrow Sites and Soundbytes http://ow.ly/w80sz

Depressing | Modesto to Replace School Librarians with Teachers in response to #CommonCore http://ow.ly/w3vKt via @PWKidsBookshelf

Common Core Flip-Flop: Gov Cuomo Changes Mind About Using #CommonCore Results For Teacher Evaluations | @sljournal http://ow.ly/vUiip

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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8. Open mic and the classroom

perkins open mic1 Open mic and the classroomI confess that I have been known to say that many, many books are my absolute favorites, to the extent that sometimes people roll their eyes and avert their attention. And I think that as a reader, this is true — I fall in love a little with story after story. But it is not true that as a teacher, I fall in love with every book that passes by. I read with different eyes for my classroom, and given limited time and resources, I get to choose fewer books on that front.

So recently Mitali Perkins released an edited volume called Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices, a collection of pieces about being bicultural, and I fell in love twice. As a multiethnic person who loves thinking about these issues, I was on board immediately with the poignant, wry, and funny accounts about being in-between. Those are feelings I know well.

But I didn’t just fall in love with Open Mic as a reader — I feel in love with it as a teacher. The Common Core Standards (if your state is into those) push us to teach across genres more, to use multiple texts to work on synthesis skills, and to expand our text repertoires in ways I think could be important and useful. But in practice, I have found that my repertoire of texts is going to need some shoring up if I am going to shift my teaching that way.

In addition to having an exciting theme that I absolutely love for my classroom, the texts in Open Mic vary in genre. There is a poem, a personal account, a graphic opinion piece, and so on.  Those different genres give me a whole new window into how we can build the skills to synthesize and analyze, because crossing genres necessitates that work. I can see the great usefulness of a collection like this, and I hope lots of other cross-genre collections around themes are on my near horizon. I can hardly wait to get started.

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9. Revising a Picture Book: Length, Common Core, Details and Research


Goodreads Book Giveaway

Vagabonds by Darcy Pattison

Vagabonds

by Darcy Pattison

Giveaway ends May 09, 2014.

See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

I just did a quick revision of a picture book that’s in progress.

Shorter. One goal was to shorten the story whenever possible. I cut out an entire page, and an entire sentence. Doesn’t sound like much? At only 700 words, the story is as streamlined as I can make it. Well, no. I just cut out one page and a sentence. Honing the text to the tightest possible is important for picture book texts.

When I’m asked to read someone’s manuscript, here’s my main comment: Cut it in half.

And a friend adds this: After cutting it in half, cut another 100 words.

Classroom reading center: Will your picture book be useful in the classroom?

Classroom reading center: Will your picture book be useful in the classroom?



Common Core. The Common Core education standards are a couple years now and their requirements are definitely on my mind. I am constantly consulting the standards for each grade level and working to make sure the picture book is useful in the classroom. Because I write for early elementary, I consider this a crucial aspect of what I do.

Oliver511x400First, I focus on the story. Is the story itself compelling and interesting for the audience? If so, then can I add anything that will enhance it’s use in the classroom, without changing the essential story elements? For example, my picture book, THE JOURNEY OF OLIVER K. WOODMAN is now ten years old and still selling well. Part of the reason is that the story is told in letters and postcards. Of course, children’s learn about writing letters and postcards in early elementary, so this book is a natural for teachers to use as a mentor text. The story came first and demanded to be written in an epistolary (big word for letters) format. But after the story worked, then the layout and design decisions enhanced its usefulness in the classroom. Story first; but don’t ignore the book’s classroom usefulness.

Details. The Work-in-progress is about cats and I’m looking at about 20 cats that could be used in various places in the story. Which cat goes where? It’s a balancing act which requires me to know something about different cat breeds and match them to my story. I also have to carefully tabulate and re-tabulate which breeds I’ve used. I can’t use one breed twice, but each of the 20 breeds must be used. Check. No, move that one to this place. Re-check. It was a morning of detailed work!

Research.
I know–everyone loves cat videos. But have you ever seen a Devon Rex cat?

If you can’t see this video, click here.

In case you were wondering, according to the Cat Fancier’s Association, here’s the top 20 most popular cat breeds in 2013. (In other words, I am doing research to document and justify the breeds I am using in the story.)

RANK BREED
1 Persian
2 Exotic
3 Maine Coon Cat
4 Ragdoll
5 British Shorthair
6 Abyssinian
7 American Shorthair
8 Sphynx
9 Siamese
10 Devon Rex
11 Norwegian Forest Cat
12 Oriental
13 Scottish Fold
14 Cornish Rex
15 Birman
16 Burmese
17 Tonkinese
18 Siberian
19 Russian Blue
20 Egyptian Mau

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10. P.S. Evolution is real

queen P.S. Evolution is realSo the Rialto, CA, school district has decided that maybe it’s NOT a good idea to have eighth-graders debate the existence of the Holocaust. I’m of two minds (Opposing Viewpoints: In My Head). While I see the chance for much mischief in such an assignment and believe middle school is too early  for the kind of fact- and viewpoint-evaluation the topic requires, I also think this is a great focus for teaching high school students how to navigate truth, history, and propaganda. It could provide what the Common Core–at its best–asks students to do: “to use cogent reasoning and evidence collection skills that are essential for success in college, career, and life.”

Just so we’re clear: I’m not asking schools to “teach the controversy,” allowing students to decide for themselves in an all-viewpoints-are-respected-here kind of way about the historical reality of the Nazi genocide. What this lesson should instead teach them is how to distinguish facts from the ravings of racist whackjobs.  The Anti-Defamation League’s L.A. office called the assignment dangerous, citing “the large volume of misinformation” on the internet, but doesn’t that volume also mean that people need to learn how to recognize pernicious claptrap when it’s presented to them?

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11. Picture books for launching mathematicians

My school uses a play-based approach to teaching math, which is advantageous because as an early childhood teacher, my students still love math and they love to play games. They enjoy learning and working with numbers and I can build on this through math games.

For me, teaching math is often challenging because my own mathematical background emphasized “doing” math over understanding with drills, formulas, and math algorithms rather than reinforcing why we use specific math procedures. Add to this the new Common Core Math Standard’s focus on conceptual understanding, fluency, and application and you get a recipe for highly reflective lesson planning!

One way to bridge this gap between doing and understanding math is with picture books. They provide purposeful ways to ground students intuitive use of math and easily get them using and talking about the most effective strategies.

There are so many wonderful math concept and picture books out there, yet selecting books that effectively support mini lessons and launch play requires a bit more searching. The books need to interest students, embed rather than simply present math concepts, lend themselves well to differentiated extension activities, and of course, be fun!

Some books I’ve successfully used and that meet these criteria are:

I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean — This is a Kevin Sherry’s story about a giant squid who thinks he’s bigger than everything in the ocean. He’s very big, but is he the biggest? This book is great for introducing relative size, comparisons. This is an alternative text for introducing standard measurements as well as scale when students are challenged to rank by size or to think of reliable ways to determine how much bigger he might be than other animals.

roostersofftoseeworld 218x300 Picture books for launching mathematicians Rooster’s Off to See the World — This classic Eric Carle book can help launch math activities about number sets. In the book, Rooster seeks company as he travels around the world. Along the way, he encounters different types of animals and invites them along. The best part of this book is that every time he meets a new animal, the number of them increases. It’s a great way to introduce students to counting in groups and helps students to distinguish between total numbers and sets of numbers. With this book, students played sorting games and counted number sets.

Ppigswillbepigs 300x259 Picture books for launching mathematiciansigs Will be Pigs — This is the hilarious tale of a family of pigs who need to find enough money to pay for dinner at a restaurant. The author Amy Axelrod wrote this book to teach explicitly about money and she does a fabulous job. I especially love this story because it can also be used across the curriculum. I’m connecting this to a social studies unit on access to healthful food. Grocery store or restaurant math games using coins are natural extension activities with this book.

alexanderwhousedtoberich 300x229 Picture books for launching mathematiciansAlexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday — Judith Viorst’s Alexander tales normalize my students’ every day experiences and emotions. This one is no different. Alexander has just spent every cent of the money his grandparents gave him. As he recounts how he spent it, students add up how much he spends or can subtract from the initial total. I love this one because a few of the items have prices that some students might find awkward to work with. As with Pigs Will be Pigs, it also lends itself well to cross-curricular connections, especially the basic economic principle of scarcity: Alexander had to learn the hard way about saving versus spending his limited income. For this book, a game to help Alexander save is also a next step for money.

When using picture books to teach math, pre- and post-assessment of student understanding can easily get lost. Talking to students about the math concepts in the books before sending them off to play math extension games can give you a sense of their thinking. For post-assessment, reviewing student work and requiring them to either to write or share out their strategies for success on the games lets them talk about their math knowledge and provides natural entry points for correcting misconceptions or pushing learning.

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12. Nonfiction then and now and...?



I started writing for I.N.K. in March 2008.  With nostalgia and curiosity, I went back to look at some of my initial posts.  I kept on reading and realized that I was also looking at a history of what has happened in the field of kids’ nonfiction from then to now.  At least, some of its zeitgeist, its ups and downs. 

By 2008 we nonfiction writers had had time to road-test our liberation from straitjacket association with encyclopedic information.  We had seen or written books such as Dance, Actual Size, and Action Jackson, celebrating the changes that came with cheaper color printing and more experimental styles and formats.  It was no wonder my second post for I.N.K., A Rose by any Other Name? bridled against the confines of the word used to describe our field.  I wrote: 

As we all know, words matter. So what about the one that describes our genre of writing: nonfiction. I used to feel just fine about it, but now I have a slight twinge. After all, it does have a negative point of reference. The “I’m not fiction” instead of the “I am something” kind of writing…

If you link to the post you can see a discussion of the issue and the difficulty I and other  commenters had trying to find a good solution.

Artistically booming , we were about to take a fall. In June 2008, however, most of us didn’t know that. I’m a glass-half-full-AND-half-empty type, perhaps I had a premonition.  In The Lucky Thing about Friday the 13th(prompted by my assigned post date) I amused myself with cheerful grumbling about the luck factor (or lack thereof) in writing nonfiction for kids.  Here is part of it:

The lucky thing is that schools and libraries can always use a well-written book to update their collection on a particular subject.
The unlucky thing is that they can’t afford to buy them.
The lucky thing is that you can create books on subjects kids will love.
The unlucky thing is that many publishers can’t imagine marketing nonfiction to the trade market, so the kids don’t find them.

If you click on rest of the post, please note I do end with the lucky side; I love what I do and have, luckily, managed to make a living at it.  

Nevertheless a few months later, the fan was hit plunging us into the biggest fiscal crisis since the Great Depression.  It hit the book industry the same way it affected the nation at large.  I know many people whose completed, even paid-for manuscripts were dropped by publishers looking at a shriveling market with no immediate change in sight.  One of my own was pushed to a pub date over a year in the future so it could be “supported more successfully.”

Happily unagented for most of my career, I began to think about the comfort of having an ally.  I started a search for an agent and was shocked by what I found on their web sites.  Another post, Agents-Agents of Change was born. 

A personal nadir perhaps, but hope springs and swings eternal along with changing fortunes for people and professions.  In other words, if you stick around long enough, the pendulum swings.  On a personal level, I had three books come out in 2012.  More globally, picture books, declared a dying form, managed a “rebirth.” YA nonfiction is growing. Nonfiction books are more frequent winners and honor winners of the Newbery, Printz and Caldecott. 

I’m not exactly sure when the phrase Common Core first appeared in I.N.K. posts, but it increased exponentially in 2012.  My book Skyscraper was included in Math Reads, Marilyn Burn’s series using actual books to teach math; and I posted about future models of using our books in the classroom. When Penguin combined The Truth About Poop and Gee Whiz in a new edition, I wrote about what was lost and gained by very intelligently reissuing these books in black-and-white digest form for the burgeoning middle grade market. 
 
I wasn’t the only one commenting on the Brave New World of nonfiction’s role in education.  I.N.K. devoted the whole month of October 2013 to Common Core and nonfiction in the classroom with a spirited discussion about the author’s role in the process.

Is Common Core going to change the role and status of nonfiction in our culture?  Who knows.  I know more imprints are opening their lists to it.  And I wish we’d have more time and posts to report on what happens as a result.  But it’s been great to have an opportunity to think and write about all things nonfiction until now.  Thank you, I.N.K.

This post, in fact, my tenure at I.N.K. is dedicated to Linda Salzman, without whom…

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13. Arts in the Schools and INK (Interesting Nonfiction for Kids)

While writing today’s piece, I anxiously checked news feeds regarding the fire at the Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh Building. By the end of the day, the fire service reported they were able to save 90% of the building and about 70% of it’s contents. Just thinking about the possible loss turned my stomach. Started in 1897, the Mackintosh Building was designed by Scotland's most influential architect and designer, Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Opened in 1909, the art nouveau building signaled the birth of a new style in 20th Century European architecture. A 2009 poll by the Royal Institute of British Architects voted it the best British building of the last 175 years. Imagine what we could have lost today.

About six and a half years ago, Linda Salzman contacted me. She asked if I’d be interested in writing for a kids’ nonfiction blog she was creating. Evidentially, someone noticed all the blogging I’d been writing promoting of art books for kids.  Today, in preparing to write this second-to-last post, I reread all my pieces and perused the books I’ve promoted. I was curious if there has been any change in the educational world in regard to the arts. Here's just a few items that I found. There are many more. I wonder where we will stand in another six years. 

In the last six years, we’ve become accustomed to the terms Common Core, and STEM and STEAM.
  • Common Core State Standards now aim towards a 50% nonfiction and 50% fiction classroom reading text; previously the classroom reading text was around 80% fiction.
  • In 2009, President Obama started White House Science Fairs as part of his Educate to Innovate campaign to inspire more girls and boys to excel in STEM subjects. Next week, on May 27, the 2014 White House Science Fairbegins. This year’s fair will include a specific focus on girls and women who are excelling in STEM. The Administration’s $4.35 billion Race to the Top competition grants states competitive preference if they demonstrated efforts to close the STEM gap for girls and other groups that are underrepresented.
  • In February 2013, the bipartisan Congressional STEAM Caucus was created, co-chaired by Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) and Congressman Aaron Schock (R-IL). “We frequently discuss the importance of STEM education, but we can’t ignore the importance of engaging and educating both halves of the brain,” Bonamici maintains. “Creative, critical thinking leads to innovation. The integration of the arts into STEM curriculum will excite creativity in the minds of our future leaders.”
  • Stanford University began requiring all undergraduates to take two units of "Creative Expression" classes, including design, dance, music, fine arts, drama or creative writing.
  • Sesame Street officially expanded its STEM-themed programming to include arts.
  • Last week, Actress Kerry Washington wrote an impassioned plea for arts in the schools in a Huffington Post blog column titled How to Save Our Schools: The Arts and Music are No Fairytale.

Art-themed nonfiction books introduce young people to the passion and inspiration of artists and creators. Years ago, reading Frida by Jonah Winter to an elementary class was an eye opener for me. The text and illustrations presented the art of Frida Kahlo flawlessly, complimenting my presentation. And, the book even caught everyone's attention in a room full of kindergarteners and a class of fifth graders – no small feat.

As the support for arts in the schools continues to grow, I’ll continue to spread the word about nonfiction art books, including STEM/STEAM, activity and creativity books. Tragically, we could physically lose our treasures, but the passion and creative inspiration is what stays in our hearts. That is what art books set out to accomplish.

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14. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: May 30

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. There are a few links from last week, too, shared from my iPad while I was on vacation in Disney World. Topics this week include authors, book lists and awards, common core, diversity, events, growing bookworms, reading, publishing, schools, libraries, and summer reading.

Authors

Henry Winkler: I love acting but I am proudest of my books - @TelegraphBooks http://ow.ly/xmNSB via @PWKidsBookshelf

12 Charming Tidbits About Beverly Cleary | Mental Floss via @bkshelvesofdoom http://goo.gl/Db5nMs #kidlit

Book Lists and Awards

As Easy as ABC: Awards, Best Sellers, and Critical Thinking by @gregpincus http://goo.gl/UAAJPU

Kirkus Reviews unveils three $50,000 book prizes (for fiction, nonfiction, and #kidlit) http://ow.ly/xoTaovia @bkshelvesofdoom

Ten Dystopian Visions for middle grade readers, some classic some new, at Views From the Tesseract http://ow.ly/xmSqh #kidlit

Damian Dibben's top 10 time travel books | @GuardianBooks via @tashrow http://ow.ly/xjUgM #kidlit

Interesting! Top Ten List: Favorite Postmodern Picture Books by Frank Serafini @nerdybookclub http://goo.gl/c9lTMY #kidlit

Killers in Plain Sight: Five Stories about Assassins in High School @bkshelvesofdoom http://goo.gl/80hEuM #yalit

So You Want To Read Middle Grade: Natalie Aguirre on upper middle grade #kidlit @greenbeanblog http://goo.gl/8WRC6T

YA Gets Nordic: Seven Stories with Roots in Norse Mythology from @bkshelvesofdoom http://goo.gl/O2QRoK #yalit

A Tuesday Ten: London Calling . . . | Speculative #kidlit set in London | Views From the Tesseract http://goo.gl/5TRX3v

3 YA Novels To Help Us Remember Our Nigerian Girls @mitaliperkins http://goo.gl/nXDsp1

15 books that should be the next Percy Jackson from @book_nut http://ow.ly/3kFTAy #kidlit

Common Core

Part One: Developing Your Nonfiction Reading Aptitude by Sue Bartle at The Uncommon Corps http://goo.gl/m4oB5p #commoncore

Beyond the Backmatter: Nonfiction Equivalents of Bonus Features and Director Commentary at The Uncommon Core http://goo.gl/45sIvh

Diversity

30 Diverse YA Titles To Get On Your Radar from @catagator @bookriot http://ow.ly/xoUr1 #WeNeedDiverseBooks #yalit

Thursday Three: Diverse Picture Books suggested by @MotherReader http://goo.gl/A96Hsv

For Armchair BEA, @MsYingling shares a list of books for kids about other cultures http://ow.ly/xoTHk #WeNeedDiverseBooks #kidlit

DiverseBooksCampaignHow To Get People To Care: Anatomy Of A Trending Hashtag, #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign @FastCompany http://ow.ly/xmD0i @PWKidsBookshelf

Where Are All The Fat Girls In Literature? | Mariko Tamaki in @HuffPostBooks http://ow.ly/xkbwt via @PWKidsBookshelf

It's Not Me, It's You: Letting Go of the Status Quo | Zetta Elliott @HuffPostBooks http://ow.ly/xkaUJ via @SheilaRuth #diversity

Diversity in Children's Books: Moving From Outcry to Real, Market-Driven Solutions | Kyle Zimmer @FirstBook @HuffPost http://ow.ly/xjUln

The Great Greene Heist goes on sale today! Have you taken the Great Greeene Challenge? @haleshannon http://ow.ly/xjTwg @varianjohnson

Events, Programs and Research

Activities for Children's Book Week 2014 suggestions from @BookChook http://goo.gl/LjsVS1

Read with your ears! Free SYNC audiobooks this summer, starting now! | @BooksYALove http://ow.ly/xjYKR

It's time for The Sixth Annual Book-a-Day Challenge from @donalynbooks http://goo.gl/PFqkBw #bookaday

48hbc_newCentral Ohio Blogger Breakfast to Kick Off to 48 Hour Read and Book-A-Day @FrankiSibberson #bookaday #48hbc http://goo.gl/GuDSL1

Successful Brains, on the behavior differences between successful people and not from @tashrow http://goo.gl/8rK7sd

Growing Bookworms

When Imagination, Story & Creativity Work As One by @TrevorHCairney http://goo.gl/xEFYwm #literacy

Create a reading culture, make sure you are not perpetuating" gender stereotypes, writes Stacy Dillon http://goo.gl/XD4i1t

Good advice! Chris Evans: parents must read to their children, in @TelegraphArts http://ow.ly/xoM7F via @librareanne

The progression of her sons as readers by @katsok and how to create the next generation of @NerdyBookClub members http://ow.ly/xmwtR

"The best thing we can do to ensure our boys are reading ... is to get to know each child" @katsok on boys + reading http://ow.ly/xjTJm

On building a reading culture | We’re All In This Together by Emily Meixner @NerdyBookClub http://goo.gl/vUn4y1

Kidlitosphere

RT @RosemondCates Check out the fabulous @JensBookPage on http://www.bighairandbooks.blogspot.com  #spotlightsaturday

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

"why do we keep judging readers who don’t have the privilege of buying ... books from a (physical) store?" @catagator http://ow.ly/xoUWM

At The Uncommon Corps, Marc Aronson explores the question of what we mean by "pleasure reading" http://ow.ly/xmvh1

Define "Reading", @catagator responds to recent studies about people reading less, questions definition of readinghttp://ow.ly/xjYEs

Fun! Putting Your Book in Your Book — @100scopenotes (on illustrators including call-backs to their own work) http://ow.ly/xmw26

A refreshing primer from @tlt16 | Dear Media, Let me help you write that article on #YAlit http://ow.ly/xkbiY via @PWKidsBookshelf

MAKING OUR OWN MARKET: Why I Leaped into Print-on-Demand and Ebook Publishing by Carole Boston Weatherford | http://ow.ly/xmvH8

On ‘The John Green Effect,’ Contemporary Realism, and Form as a Political Act by Anne Ursu http://goo.gl/Tkt2UK via @bkshelvesofdoom

Schools and Libraries

Can teachers read books only for pleasure or do they think about teaching? Both. by Amanda Jaksetic @nerdybookclub http://goo.gl/pEDT0U

Another sigh! School Librarians Get No Love in Allentown School District (1 librarian for 15 elem dists) | @sljournal http://ow.ly/xmDgH

Sigh! California’s Modesto City Schools To End Library Instruction for Elementary Schools | @sljournal http://ow.ly/xk5Fa

Summer Reading

IndieBound has released recommended#SummerReading #kidlit. @tashrow shares the top ten, w/ links to more http://ow.ly/xoSS8

#SummerReading List: Books, Resources and Programs by @momandkiddo http://goo.gl/UJI80R

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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15. COMMON CORE COMMON SENSE

I’ve enjoyed all the talk and articles lately about the adoption of the Current Educational Common Core with its emphasis on critical thinking and non-fiction facts by using trade books in our school classrooms.  I thought that was what good teachers were doing all along? and parents too.  It’s common sense.  We are trying to educate kids to the world around them….history and human interaction so they can understand people better as they grow.  Information about other lands so their eyes will be open to not only the differences but the ‘sameness’ of kids and adults, and animals all over our small earth. Good story telling has always been the draw with fiction and non fiction.  Learning comes in between the lines, if you will.

The advantage of this being ‘official’ now is that publishers are searching their backlists and bringing back good non-fiction as well as fiction, and grabbing up informational but fun new stories. And of course my agency artists are thrilled to have such a need for story telling pictures for these books…for all ages. Picture books are often a child’s first introduction to people and life outside their own family and neighborhood. They have always been vital to early learning, mental growth, thinking skills and maturity.  Ever more so today in preparation for school and during the so important early school years.

What IS new is that Publishers and marketing departments are writing up guidelines that will help teachers use these books they might not have recognized as appropriate for the standards set by this Common Core. Several publishers have new sites where teachers and parents can keep knowledgeable about books on” technology, writing, math, and early literacy” (PW).  Some books have had ‘back of book’ questions added to encourage the conversations that lead to exploration and learning.  Several houses have launched new lines of books based on the Core Concepts.

Some examples of current books from our agency that are perfect for this Core are: Nicole Tadgell illustrated “FRIENDS FOR FREEDOM: The Story of Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass” (Susanne Slade from Charlesbridge Fall 14).  KarBen Lerner will bring “Goldie Takes a Stand” about Goulda Meir, illustrated by Kelsey Garrity Riley also Fall 14.  Patrice Barton illustrated “I Pledge Allegiance” by Pat Mora and Elizabeth Martinez for Knopf/Random.(14), and Larry Day’s illustrations for “Voices From Oregon Trail” from Dial and Kay Winters, tell the story! (summer 14) But even the newly launched “Isabelle and Isabella’s Little Book of Rules” from Little Simon and illustrated by our Priscilla Burris is a lovely, observant, non fiction from the mouths of the very children we’re trying to start the conversation with!  Pick these up and see! Use your common sense and enjoy the Common Core!             

SF_causes TADGELLpledge in courthouse BARTONfrom “Pledge”

from “Friends for Freedom”


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16. Common Core at Curriculum Night

It was curriculum night at a local Tukwila elementary school – with a focus on Common Core State Standards! I was excited to go!
As a public librarian, I’m always trying to figure out how I can be supportive and involved with students and school staff. ALSC has a resource page (http://www.ala.org/alsc/ccss-resources), and previous ALSC Blog posts have been helpful, but a chance to personally interact with local elementary staff was not to be missed! I could focus on talking to the principal and teachers about CCSS and find out what’s going on in my school district. Education leaders in WA expect the 2014-2015 CCSS assessments to result in lower scores state-wide. As “the most diverse school district in the nation” with 80% of students qualifying for free/reduced meals, there already exist many challenges in preparing students in Tukwila for graduation. Maybe I could gain some insight into providing help.

Right off the bat, the principal mentioned great interest in our newly formed Book Buddies program where teen volunteers spend time reading with younger kids. I discovered students are expected to read each night – since reading, along with math, will be areas of concentration for this school. I was delighted to hear we’re on the principal’s radar and we’re offering a program that matters to him.

After a general presentation, the grade levels broke up into individual presentations and I attended the 4th grade session.  Students in this grade will have access to Chromebook laptops and will use the following websites at school and at home to help with reading: Lexia, Raz-Kids, and Spelling City. Most homework will be math, including these websites: TenMarks and XtrMath. Because not all students will be taking laptops home with them, our public library branch can offer support by being familiar with these sites and providing homework help during nonschool hours.

The slide presented by the 4th grade teachers about Reading and CCSS was simple and encouraging:
• To read both narrative and expository texts
• To understand and remember what they read
• To relate their own knowledge or experiences to texts
• To use comprehension strategies to improve their comprehension
• To communicate with others about what is read

Does this sound familiar? On a basic level these are the same strategies we promote in Story Time when we talk about literacy and reading with a child. We know children’s librarians are preparing families long before the children go to school. Now I’m thinking of new conversations with parents whose children are already reading on their own – how they can continue to build reading skills and thus pave the way to making the new standards that much easier to understand and achieve.

-Gaye Hinchliff, member of School-Age Programs and Services Committee, works for KCLS in Tukwila, WA and can be reached at ghinchli@kcls.org

0 Comments on Common Core at Curriculum Night as of 11/23/2013 12:25:00 AM
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17. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: November 29

TwitterLinksHoping that you all had a lovely Thanksgiving. Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Happy reading!

Book Lists

Just out: the @NYTimes Notable Children’s Books of 2013 http://ow.ly/rfA8d  #kidlit via @bkshelvesofdoom

Kirkus Best Children’s Books of 2013 list released http://ow.ly/rdokV via @tashrow #kidlit

A very nice list: SLJ Best Books 2013 Picture Books | @sljournal http://ow.ly/rdr2i #kidlit

Top Ten Old-School Girl Books by Lyn @FairchildHawks @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/rajYV #kidlit

Best Picture Books of 2013, by category, according to @darshanakhiani http://ow.ly/rajsJ #kidlit

Events

TakeYourChildToABookstorePin1Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day Returns December 7th http://ow.ly/rdq6z via @PublishersWkly

Gender and Reading/Writing

Lots of thoughts on gender in picture books from author Jonathan Emmett @ScribbleStreet http://ow.ly/ramsT via @playbythebook

Women make picture books too… observes @LaurelSnyder after looking at male-dominated best of lists http://ow.ly/r8fRT

The gender bias in children's books by @sarahvmac in DailyLife http://ow.ly/r6gZd via @tashrow #kidlit

Thoughtful post by @anneursu On Gender and Boys Read Panels http://ow.ly/rai2L #kidlit #literacy

Growing Bookworms

RT @CStarrRose: Thanks Jen @JensBookPage for her post on the new edition of THE READ ALOUD HANDBOOK for the Spellbinders newsletter http://eepurl.com/HbcLD

At @KirbyLarson blog, school librarian @IPushBooks talks about how she is nurturing wild readers http://ow.ly/rdnuB @donalynbooks

Good ideas! How to Create a “Culture of Reading” | Suggestions from AASL 2013 | @sljournal http://ow.ly/rdrdd

Kidlitosphere

Flippy-Do Reads!: #KidLitCon13 - ARCS, Turkey Sandwiches and Twitter, oh my! reports Emilia P @flippydo http://ow.ly/rakJb

Don't miss @MotherReader 150 Ways to Give a Book, one of the best book-themed holiday gift guides around! http://ow.ly/ra1VC #kidlit

Lots of great links here: This Week’s Tweets and Pins | Waking Brain Cells by @tashrow http://ow.ly/r6hOR

MatildaOn Reading and Writing

Have to do any holiday shopping for a YA lover? @bkshelvesofdoom suggests Lizzie Skurnick subscription http://ow.ly/rdlOJ @Igpublishing

RT @tashrow Neville Longbottom is the Most Important Person in Harry Potter—And Here’s Why http://buff.ly/18PLZ9Z #kidlit

Programs and Research

Study from Booknet Canada finds parents, children, + teens prefer paper books for reading, reports @tashrow http://ow.ly/rdmgd

Young adult readers 'prefer printed to ebooks' | @GuardianBooks http://ow.ly/rdqJy via @PWKidsBookshelf

Research shows TV can impede kids' intellectual development -- even when it's playing in the background http://ow.ly/rdqsH @salon

In Austin, @BookPeople + @RandomHouseKids Partner on Pen-Pal Literacy Initiative with Malawi, Africa http://ow.ly/rdqdT @PublishersWkly

Schools and Libraries

Common Core: What it Means for Fiction in Schools, asks a high school English teacher @bookriot http://ow.ly/rdqDy via @PWKidsBookshelf

Things @katsok loves about sharing The Lightning Thief by @CampHalfBlood w/ her students http://ow.ly/rfg5k #kidlit

The Totally Awesome Way Some Libraries Are Tackling Hunger (food donations in lieu of fines) http://ow.ly/rdryO @HuffPostImpact

Userful post: Ten Ways to Get Books for Your Classroom or Library by @GigiMcAreads @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/r8fXs

Thanksgiving

I'm grateful for this, too. "It's All Over Now!" - My Gratitude for the Power of Storytelling by @gregpincus http://ow.ly/rdosa

Thank God for Books, a collection of Thanksgiving book posts gathered by @semicolonblog http://ow.ly/rdoyZ

Just in time for Thanksgiving, a list of picture books about food from @bookblogmomma http://ow.ly/rdnAN #kidlit

More ideas for Thanksgiving travel | Top 5 activities for family roadtrips--without TV! from @rosemondcates http://ow.ly/rdmEu

Suggestions for #literacy-building car activities from @Scholastic http://ow.ly/rdm5I via @JGCanada

© 2013 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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18. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: February 7

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. There is some exceptionally good stuff in the Growing Bookworms section this week.

Also, in my quest to make it easy for people to keep up on these sorts of children's book and literacy-themed stories, I have a question for readers. Do any of you use Flipboard (app for reading news stories on tablets - lets you set up your own customized set of topics and shows stories magazine-style)? At the suggestion of Sheila Ruth, I've been dabbling in Flipboard a bit, and I am wondering if people would find some sort of Literacy Links Magazine there useful. But on to the links!

Valentine's Day

Fun! Write on, Valentine! FREE Printables for Your Favorite Writers & Readers from @MrsPStorytime http://ow.ly/thJFR

A celebration of hearts – 7 Valentine’s Day activities (all reading-friendly) for families | @wendy_lawrence http://ow.ly/thD3j

Book Lists and Awards

Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals longlists announced @TelegraphBooks http://ow.ly/thAR2 via @PWKidsBookshelf #kidlit

Some fine SFF #yalit on the Locus Recommended List! including @Gwenda http://ow.ly/tfiAw

Wow! Impressive, categorized list of 125+ Must Have Children's Books from @BooksBabiesBows http://ow.ly/tfgPz #kidlit

New booklist at Stacked: Get Genrefied: YA Urban Fiction http://ow.ly/tfgrL @catagator #yalit #kidlit

Season of the Witch: A #YAlit Reading List from Stacked http://ow.ly/t9Yt1 @catagator

Encouraging Scientific and Engineering Practices with Picture Books @michaeltcarton guests at Darlene Beck-Jacobson http://ow.ly/teR9V

2014 @yalsa Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Readers | @tashrow http://ow.ly/tjK60 #yalit

2014 @alscblog Notable Children’s Books–Younger Readers | @tashrow http://ow.ly/tjKbk #kidlit

2014 Notable Children's Books for Middle Readers from @tashrow http://ow.ly/2bbCvX #kidlit

ALA Award Reactions

Fun stuff, w/ photos and videos | The 2014 Youth Media Awards: Things I Love — @100scopenotes http://ow.ly/tfir3 #kidlit

Librarians React to the Youth Media Awards | ALA Midwinter 2014 | @sljournal http://ow.ly/torzB #kidlit

Common Core

Getting Up to Speed on Common Core: An ABPA Panel @PublishersWkly http://ow.ly/thAnW via @PWKidsBookshelf #commoncore

In the Classroom: Some Questions from @medinger About Some #CommonCore Lessons | educating alice http://ow.ly/tosMH

Gender, Books, and Diversity

Suggested books for young children that include "casual diversity" from @FuseEight http://ow.ly/thDE7 #kidlit

Is Pink a Girl Color? And Other Questions We Should Quit Asking, focusing on readers not gender by @cathymere http://ow.ly/tfhAM

BoysReadPinkIt's time for the Fifth Annual Guys Read Pink Month! @MsYingling w/ celebrity sponsor @AVance_Author http://ow.ly/tfhPX

35 Multicultural Early Chapter Books for Kids from @momandkiddo http://ow.ly/tffUZ #kidlit #diversity

Growing Bookworms

Sigh! Setting Children Up to Hate Reading http://flip.it/4ewWg

Here's a fine resource for parents | 100 Ways to Grow a Reader from @growingbbb http://ow.ly/tffvi #literacy

Collecting #100ReasonstoRead @Scholastic | Share yours: http://ow.ly/tfjZL #literacy

Solid advice! How to Raise a Reader: 5 Tips for Parents from @delightchildbks http://ow.ly/tfdVx #literacy

Non-Fiction Love | On how nonfiction helps kids develop reading comprehension skills @ReadingWithBean http://ow.ly/tjJ6i #CommonCore

5 Tips for Parents of That Precocious Reader | @NYPL via @librareanne http://ow.ly/torYL #literacy

Just Interesting

A useful resource: Book Chook Favourite Online Image Makers for kids http://ow.ly/tfhlw @BookChook

Must read from @EllenHopkinsYA On Finding Peace in Living (re: addiction, her daughter's + Philip S. Hoffman) http://ow.ly/thCac

What say you on this news: J.K. Rowling questions Ron and Hermione's relationship http://ow.ly/tfeHX #kidlit

Kidlitosphere

Inscription Magazine is a new pub w/ fantasy & science fiction for teens http://ow.ly/t9XeC #yalit via @CynLeitichSmith

Let's Cekebrate International Book Giving Day says @BookChook http://ow.ly/2bbD1i

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

RT @NUSLibraries: Sharing an interesting article: Why Printed Books Will Never Die http://flip.it/6wcq3 via @mashable

RT @PWKidsBookshelf: 9 life lessons everyone can learn from these beloved children's books | Huff Post http://flip.it/EJkas

What makes an adult book right for teens? asks @StyleBlog http://ow.ly/t9X3t via @tashrow #reading

RT @tashrow The Netflix of kids’ books? Epic launches on iPad for $9.99/month — Tech News and Analysis http://buff.ly/1dLdRgO #kidlit

RT: @Librareanne: Young Adult Literature Is Better Than You Think http://fb.me/6s8L2I4rP

Dark YA RT @HMHKids: "Even if your kids aren’t going through a difficult situation, it’s likely their friends are." http://ow.ly/t7ZGK

Parenting

Words of wisdom | Why Not Letting Your Kids Do Chores Hurts Society and Me | @SensibleMoms http://ow.ly/thBrI

Useful post for parents from @cmirabile | Advice to My 10 Year Old Regarding SnapChat Hack http://ow.ly/th3EO

Schools and Libraries

Nice! New Teacher’s Reading Guide: Ten Steps to Turn High School Students Into Readers by @shkrajewski @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/tfg7X

Excellent Choice! Judy Blume Named Honorary Chairman of National Library Week 2014 | @infodocket via @sljournal http://ow.ly/torpb

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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19. COMMON CORE SPOTLIGHT: FOUNDING MOTHERS

The recently-published FOUNDING MOTHERS, by Cokie Roberts, presents the incredible accomplishments of the women who orchestrated the American Revolution behind the scenes.

Founding Mothers

In this vibrant nonfiction picture book, Roberts traces the stories of heroic, patriotic women such as Abigail Adams, Martha Washington, Phillis Wheatley, Mercy Otis Warren, Sarah Livingston Jay, and others through their personal correspondence, private journals, ledgers and lists, and even favored recipes. The extraordinary triumphs of these women created a shared bond that urged the founding fathers to “Remember the Ladies.”

Here are some Common Core objectives that FOUNDING MOTHERS can help meet:

  • Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
  • Describe the overall structure of events, ideas, concepts, or information in a text or part of a text.
  • Explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points in a text.

And here are some questions you can use and build on for a Common Core-ready lesson:

  1. How does the structure of nonfiction text affect how we understand the material? RI.5.5
  2. What composite structure does the author use to shape events, ideas, concepts and information? RI.5.5
  3. What is the author’s purpose for writing this book? Do you think the author is a reliable source? Discuss. RI.5.8, SL.5.1d, SL.5.4

We’ll be highlighting lots more titles and how they can be used to support the Common Core in the coming months, so be sure to check back often for our Common Core Spotlight feature!

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20. Math Skills are Life Skills: Early Math, the Common Core, Visual Learning and MathStart

 

Math is everywhere! That’s a message I always try to get across to kids, teachers and parents in my MathStart books and presentations. Too often, when students leave math class, I hear them say, “I’m done with my math.”  Yet they never say “I’m done with my words” after reading and language arts. Well, just like words, you can’t do much without math. Math is an integral part of sports and music. You need math to go shopping, check on the time and count the number of candles on your birthday cake!

mathstart1START EARLY

“Who Says Math Has to Be Boring?”—that was the eye-opening question posed in a recent New York Times editorial headline. Several improvements to math education were listed in the article, with early exposure to mathematical concepts singled out as a particularly rich area for improvement. In fact, new research suggests that children as young as three may be math-ready. It turns out we are wired for math!

The interest in early math is part of a larger movement to support universal Pre-K in the US—a rare non-partisan issue with the President and Congress as well as governors and mayors in dozens of states declaring their support. Over just the last year, 30 states have increased funding, while Congress has budgeted $1 billion for programs. The US military is also on board in a big way through Mission Readiness, an effort spearheaded by a who’s who list of retired generals and admirals.

THE COMMON CORE

Another important trend in education is the adoption of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) currently being implemented in 45 states, the District of Columbia, four territories and the Department of Defense schools. Teachers, librarians, parents, and caregivers of children are clamoring for ways to effectively address the broad-reaching goals of the CCSS. These goals require elementary school educators to develop a new mind-set regarding their role in advancing mathematics education, as well as a new skill set for facilitating the teaching and learning of mathematical concepts.

VISUAL LEARNING

Visual learning describes how we gather and process information from illustrations, diagrams, graphs, symbols, photographs, icons and other models. Since visual learning strategies build on children’s innate talent to interpret visual information, they can play an important role in reaching the goals of the CCSS for Mathematics. Visual models help students understand difficult concepts, make connections to other areas of learning and build mathematical comprehension. They are especially relevant for the youngest learners, who are accomplished visual learners even as pre-readers.

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER

“Math Skills are Life Skills!” That’s the motto of the kids in the Main Street Kids’ Club  a musical based on six MathStart stories.

mathstart2

A good grounding in math from an early age is critical and visual learning strategies can play an important role. Children who are comfortable with mathematical concepts and understand that they use math all the time are more likely to do well in school and in everything else, too. It is a formula for success!

sjmurphy_5941Stuart J. Murphy is a Boston-based visual learning specialist, author and consultant. He is the author of the award-winning MathStart series (HarperCollins), which includes a total of 63 children’s books that present mathematical concepts in the context of stories for Pre-K through Grade 4. (Over 10 million copies sold.) He is also the author of Stuart J. Murphy’s I SEE I LEARN (Charlesbridge), a 16-book series of storybooks for children in Pre-K, Kindergarten, and Grade 1 that focus on social, emotional, health and safety, and cognitive skills. Most of all, Stuart is an advocate of helping our children develop their visual learning skills so that they become more successful students.

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21. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: March 21

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage.

Book Lists and Awards

2014 Indies Choice, E.B. White Read-Aloud Awards Finalists Announced | via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/uNU2V #kidlit

10 New Picture Books that Will Challenge, Amuse and Teach, recommended by @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/uNT9e #kidlit

The 2014 Carnegie Medal shortlist has been released http://ow.ly/uLPFn #kidlit @bkshelvesofdoom

2014 Shortlist for The Hans Christian Andersen Award | @tashrow http://ow.ly/uLPhn #kidlit

Guest Post @abbylibrarian | Kelly Jensen @catagator for 2016 Printz http://ow.ly/uJc9B #yalit

Common Core

A Crash Course On #CommonCore @NPR http://ow.ly/uNUAy via @PWKidsBookshelf #literacy

Diversity

A Response to “Where Are The People of Color in Children’s Books” from @StaceyLoscalzo http://ow.ly/uGtNm #kidlit

“The Boundaries of Imagination”; or, the All-White World of Children’s Books, 2014 @PhilNel http://ow.ly/uGscv #kidlit

Gender (including Women's History Month)

The Independent on Sunday will no longer be reviewing books that are "marketed to exclude either sex http://ow.ly/uGsYh @bkshelvesofdoom

Campaign to end gender-specific children's books gathers high-profile support | @GuardianBooks http://ow.ly/uJaUj @PWKidsBookshelf

Is it really true that "Gender specific books demean all children" asks @chasingray | Some counterexamples http://ow.ly/uNTq7 #kidlit

Responses to reactions to Independent on Sunday decision not to feature books aimed at boys OR girls http://ow.ly/uQ4Et @playbythebook

Stacked: Challenging the Expectation of #YAlit Characters as "Role Models" for Girls: Guest Post by @SarahOckler http://ow.ly/uQ3dS

Girls in #yalit have a right to be angry sometimes | Guest Post at Stacked by @EScottWrites http://ow.ly/uNTFL

Hey, Girlfriend — @lizb shares her picks for #yalit where positive girl friendships are front and center http://ow.ly/uJclU

Girls (in #kidlit + #yalit ) Kicking A** With Their Brains: Guest Post by @aquafortis at Stacked http://ow.ly/uJcxK

Women's History: Who Says Women Can't Be Doctors? The Story of Elizabeth Blackwell, by @TanyaLeeStone @MaryAnnScheuer http://ow.ly/uNSXy

Growing Bookworms

Michaels Read | A dad is happy to have his son "not follow directions" as long as reading in bed is the result http://ow.ly/uGsud

Lovely! To My Dear Little Duckie Quotes From Children's Books for When Things Are Not Going Your Way @BooksBabiesBows http://ow.ly/uJcNG

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

Maine publisher makes way for Robert McCloskey artwork in posters / note cards . Article mentions @FuseEight http://ow.ly/uNUY7

Young people aren’t buying e-readers. Only 5% expect to by one next year | @NYDailyNews via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/uJb4f

Promo Friday @gail_gauthier asks: Would You Buy A Book A Blogger Recommended? http://ow.ly/uGvE1 Well, yes, all the time for me

Programs, Events and Research

Celebrating the 3rd year of the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program @lochwouters library. So great! http://ow.ly/uNSaK

An Estimated Million—from Italy to North Carolina—Participated in World Read Aloud Day | @sljournal http://ow.ly/uJa7t @roccoa

I can see this | @PBSKIDS Survey Says School Readiness More Important to Parents than Letters + Numbers @sljournal http://ow.ly/uNWfP

Levels of key brain chemicals predict children's reading ability, @medical_xpress via @tashrow http://ow.ly/uGwqx

Schools and Libraries

Malorie Blackman: asks: Why are libraries mandatory in prisons but not schools? The Telegraph http://ow.ly/uGwdw via @tashrow

Miami library cuts are forcing tough decisions + huge cuts in purchases of children’s books i http://ow.ly/uNUo0 via @PWKidsBookshelf

This is nice to see | St. Paul to Create 15 New School Library Positions (more than double current amt) http://ow.ly/uJada @sljournal

Five Compliments for Reading Teachers by @JustinStygles @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/uLQ12 #literacy

"Our aim should be to foster a love of reading" vs. focusing on tests, says @amyrass @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/uGwT6

New Report: Pew Internet Releases a Typology of U.S. Public Library Engagement | LJ @INFOdocket http://ow.ly/uJan2

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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22. VERY SAME TOPICS, VERY DIFFERENT BOOKS Rosalyn Schanzer


It's pretty impressive to see how many different ways nonfiction authors can present the very same subject matter or the very same people in their books. To get the gist, today I thought it might be fun to compare some examples of books on the same topic--mostly (but not entirely) by our own INK authors and illustrators. I'll be brief, I promise.  


So how about starting with our foremost founding father, George Washington himself. Each of these 3 authors has come up with entirely different hooks to pique your interest, so a young audience could get a pretty well-rounded view of our guy by checking out these true tales.



First up is The Crossing: How George Washington Saved the American Revolution by Jim Murphy.  His hook is to focus on Washington's growth as a leader, obviously leading up to the famous crossing of the Delaware on Christmas in 1776. He's used some very interesting artwork from the period to enhance the tale.

Next comes an entirely different take on George from Marfe Ferguson Delano. Her book, Master George's People, tells the story of George's slaves at Mount Vernon, and she has collaborated with a photographer who shot pictures of reenactors on the scene. 


And this one is  (ahem) my version. George vs. George: The American Revolution as Seen from Both Sides shows how there are two sides to every story.  I got to meet George Washington and King George III and paint their pictures myself.
OK, on to the second set.  In one way or another, the next 3 books are all based upon Charles Darwin and his Theory of Evolution. Let's start with Steve Jenkins' handsome book Life on Earth: The Story of Evolution.  With a nod to Darwin, Steve has created a series of stunning collages along with fairly minimal text in order to focus on the history of all the plants and animals on the planet. 
And here's yet another nod to Deb Heiligman for her celebrated true tale of romance between two folks with opposite views of the world. Despite Emma's firm belief in the Bible's version of life on earth, she and Charles enjoy a warm and loving marriage.
Mine again. What Darwin Saw: The Journey that Changed the World, tells about Darwin's great adventures as a young guy while traveling around the world. We're on board In this colorful graphic novel as he picks up the clues that lead to his Theory of Evolution and then does the experiments that prove it.
And here's series number 3.  Apparently these authors and illustrators were hard at work at the very same time on three very different picture books about the very same person; her name is Wangari Maathai, and she won the Nobel Peace Prize for bringing Kenya's trees back to life after most of them had disappeared. 

The artwork in all three books is outstanding, and each version is truly unique. The writing styles vary enormously too. I strongly recommend that you look at them side by side to prove that there's more than one way to skin a cat.  

Planting the Trees of Kenya was written and illustrated by Claire A. Nivola.


Wangari's Trees of Peace was written and illustrated by Jeanette Winter. 
And Mama Miti was written by Donna Jo Napoli and illustrated by Kadir Nelson.  
I'd bet anything that these folks didn't know they were creating books about the same person until all 3 versions were finally published....writing and illustrating books is a solo occupation if there ever was one. 

OK, that's it--though we could easily go on and on.  Here's hoping that if any kids examine a whole series of books on the same topic written and illustrated in such different ways, they can come up with some unique new versions of their own....and have some fun at the same time. 

0 Comments on VERY SAME TOPICS, VERY DIFFERENT BOOKS Rosalyn Schanzer as of 3/25/2014 1:49:00 AM
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23. COMMON CORE SPOTLIGHT: GALAPAGOS GEORGE

GALAPAGOS GEORGE is the story of the famous Lonesome George, a giant tortoise who was the last of his species, lived to be one hundred years old, and became known as the rarest creature in the world. This incredible evolution story by renowned naturalist and Newbery Medal winner Jean Craighead George gives readers a glimpse of the amazing creatures inhabiting the ever-fascinating Galápagos Islands, complete with back matter that features key terms, a timeline, and further resources for research.

Galapagos George

Here are some Common Core objectives that GALAPAGOS GEORGE can help meet:

Identify the main purpose of a text, including what the author wants to answer, explain, or describe. Use information gained from the illustrations and words in a book to demonstrate understanding of its characters, setting, or plot. Describe the overall structure of a story, including describing how the beginning introduces the story and the ending concludes the action.

And you can use the following questions to help start a specific discussion about this book or a general discussion about informational texts and/or literature:

  1. How does a reader determine the genre of a particular book? What characteristics apply to GALAPAGOS GEORGE? RI.2.5, RL.2.3
  2. What elements of a book help the reader determine the main idea? What details support the main idea? RI.2.2, RL.2.2
  3. How do the illustrations contribute to the text (characters, setting, and plot)? RI.2.7, RL.2.7

GALAPAGOS GEORGE will be available next week!

 

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24. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: April 11

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage.

Book Lists

Stacked: Revisiting YA Verse Novels: A 2014 Guide to the Format http://ow.ly/vwXku #yalit

Always good choices | Waterstones Children’s Book Prizes 2014 | @tashrow http://ow.ly/vwXAV #kidlit

A roundup of Rapunzel retellings from @alibrarymama http://ow.ly/vCtot #kidlit

Diversity

Color Your Bookshelf: 39 Diverse Board Books to Give a Baby or Toddler from @SproutsBkshelf http://ow.ly/vx18R #kidlit

On not stereotyping | Joseph Bruchac responds to "You Don't Look Indian" @CynLeitichSmith http://ow.ly/vwV9z

Entertainment Weekly — Kid Lit’s Primary Color: White — thoughts on @ew article from @lizb http://ow.ly/vzC4X #diversity

Events (National Poetry Month)

Poetry writing for kids: 14 Ideas from @momandkiddo http://ow.ly/vzBCc #NationalPoetryMonth

For #NationalPoetryMonth, Five Teen Poet Ambassadors Will Present their Works Across the Country | @sljournal http://ow.ly/vzD4h

Growing Bookworms

Nursery Rhymes: Not Just for Babies! (Activities for older and younger kids)| @ReadingRockets via @librareanne http://ow.ly/vwMHP

How Can a Child Learn to Write in 30 Minutes? (after lots of groundwork) by @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/vwZ7a #literacy

Relevant for many! The Lesson I Learned From My Daughter About Reading Choice by @littlemamab @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/vwWR2

Great advice from @SunlitPages Raising Readers: Teaching Children to Read With Expression http://ow.ly/vzCnu #literacy

Miscellaneous

Fusenews: All you need is love (and books before the age of 3) — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/vCuGS#kidlit

Very cool! See a time-lapse video of LEGO Fenway Park being built | BetaBoston http://ow.ly/vwAqG via @tonkazona #RedSox

MagicAndMLK3My photo w/ Magic Johnson + Martin Luther King III at We Day CA, in blog post by my friend Jonathan White http://ow.ly/vwB90 #WeDay

OK, this is very fun! From @escapeadulthood | Dude Transforms Deck Into Pirate Ship http://ow.ly/vzACo

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

The 9 Most Mischievous Literary Pranksters, Ranked | @HuffPostBooks via @tashrow http://ow.ly/vx0wm

Perspective, people. Thoughts from a mother + author on why she can't respond to everyone's emails from @haleshannon http://ow.ly/vwUtU

Yes (most anyway). Should celebrities stop writing children's books? | The Observer @Guardian http://ow.ly/vzKex via @PWKidsBookshelf

LA Times - 'Fault in Our Stars' writer John Green has a good read on teens, tech by @Gwenda via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/vzK3U

How I learned to stop worrying and love the @Kindle @DailyDot via @tashrow http://ow.ly/vx0Th

Schools and Libraries

Nice! New Jersey Librarians Get $116,000 in Makerspace Grants - @ShiftTheDigital http://ow.ly/vzCV6

SummerReadingKids-1Infographic about positive impact of library #SummerReading programs as reported by parents http://ow.ly/i/5a9ww @SantaClaraLib @alscblog

Nice infographic about the positive impact that library #SummerReading programs have on kids http://ow.ly/i/5a9qN @SantaClaraLib @alscblog

Parenting

Food for thought | I'm Done Making My Kid's Childhood Magical | @BunmiLaditan @HuffPost http://ow.ly/vwYp1 via @FreeRangeKids

Risky Play: Why Children Love It and Need It | Peter Gray at Psychology Today http://ow.ly/vwWcx

What Parents Should Know About Kids’ Social Networking from @StratfordSchool http://ow.ly/vwXwZ

Programs and Research

News: @Scholastic Launches Classroom and School-wide Registration for Students to Join the #SummerReadingChallenge http://ow.ly/vwJ8h

Join the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge - @CoffeeandCrayon http://ow.ly/vzBqR #STEM

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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25. Happy Earth Day from Lee & Low Books!

In an era of great global change, it’s more important than ever to take a moment today to think about how the Earth sustains us and how we can help to sustain it in return.

We asked author Jan Reynolds, whose work we have been showcasing throughout April here on the blog and whose travels have taken her from a hot air balloon over Mount Everest to the Sahara Desert, to share a few of her favorite photos and some thoughts on celebrating Earth Day:

I chose photos for Earth Day that aren’t big landscapes on purpose. We think of Earth Day as the Earth, pristine, something separate, while in reality…

Jan Reynolds with giraffe…the Earth is one big party with all kids of life on it, not just plant life and oceans. 

Jan Reynolds with monkeysWe are all a part of it, including man. 

BaboonsSo therefore, the baboon pics. Hoping we can see ourselves in the baboons, and vice versa.

Further Reading and Resources:

Don’t miss our Pinterest board of recommended books about Earth, the Environment, and Human Impact:

Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 12.04.16 PM

Raising Global Citizens: Jan Reynolds Author Study

Teaching Geo-Literacy Using the Vanishing Cultures series

Where in the World? Using Google Maps to explore the Vanishing Cultures series


Filed under: Curriculum Corner, Holidays Tagged: common core, Earth Day, environment, environmentalism, informational text, nonfiction, photos

0 Comments on Happy Earth Day from Lee & Low Books! as of 4/22/2014 3:41:00 PM
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