Monday, April 28, 2008

Becoming Naimi Leon

Title: Becoming Naomi Leon
Author: Pam Munoz Ryan
Publisher: Scholastic Inc, 2004
Genre: Multicultural, realistic fiction Novel
Age Range: 3-6
Awards: 2004 Parents' Choice Silver Honor Award

Naomi and Owen don’t know who their parents are, they dropped her and
her brother off when they were younger. Throughout the book they are
trying to figure out who they are and who themselves are. The book is
written in part in Spanish and part in English, but the way its written
makes it very easy to understand. Naomi made list of every day worries
and such, which I found very cute! , Gram gets temporary guardianship
papers and sets off for Oaxaca City, Mexico with their neighbors; this
was done to preventSkyla, Naomi’s mother, from taking her to Las Vegas
to be a babysitter for her and her boyfriend. With her Gram’s during a
festival she carves a lion and meets her father. Naomi goes through the
court hearing and is brave and tells the court that her motherdoesn ’t
want them. At the end her Grams takes full custody of them and Naomi
has to become a strong independent women who is proud of her Mexican

Response: The cultural aspects are buried throughout
the book, they are very discrete, which is what I really like. Naomi
loves making lists; one of her best traits says her grams. This really
reminded me of Because of Winn Dixie, because little opal liked to make
lists as well. I love all of the Mexican cultural throughout the book;
it was very smooth within the text, almost unnoticed. All of the good
multicultural criteria were presented in this book. The cultural was
portrayed as multidimensional and naturally integrated. The collection
was balanced and authentic.

Teaching Ideas: I really liked
this book to discuss learning and physical disabilities. But I would
most likely use it in discussing Mexican based culture. It does a great
job showing Mexican cultural in general but it does a great job getting
you aware of their language as well. because although the language is
in the book itdoesn ’t really make it hard and obvious that its their.
I would probably have my students do a href="">metalrepousse since that is a big part of Mexican cultural as well.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Mirror of Erised

My camera is broken, so until I can get a hold of someone else's I will just describe my picture. They are all photographs that I have taken and cut and pasted together pieces. One is me and my boyfriend and I am wearing a wedding vial. In the background are pictures of fields and open spaces, along with a horse and our barn. All the pictures in my "Mirror" already exist in my life today. So I guess that makes me pretty lucky! :D

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Title: Jarry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Author:J.K Rowling
Publisher: Scholastic 1997
Grade level: 4th and up

Summary: When Harry’s parents die he goes to live with his aunt, uncle and cousin, who are a little strange. After figuring out that his family were wizards he get invited to the school of Hogwarts were he to can become a wizard. This is when he finds out his parents left him a lot of money. While traveling to Hogwarts he meets Ron, someone who he later becomes best friends with, Hermoine, and Draco, who turns out to be a horrible little boy. After arriving at school he does very well in it. He finds out he is especially good on a flying broom and gets accepted to play on the quidditch team, a sport at Hogwarts. A troll enters the school on Halloween. Hermoine gets trapped with the troll in the bathroom were Harry has to go save her. For Christmas Harry receives a cloak that makes him invisible, he uses it to sneak around the school. Harry finds the Mirror of Erised, this mirror shows you your deepest desires. When Harry gazes into the mirror he sees his parents. Strange things start happening to Harry and in friends around the school. While investigating, they find a three headed huge dog protecting something, turns out he is protecting the sorcerer’s stone. The sorcerer’s stone gives strength and eternal life to whomever posses it. Harry is the only one that was able to successfully complete all the trials to the stone. Were he finds that Professor Quirrill was the evil one trying to steal the stone. Harry defeats him but is badly injured, but he recovers. And now Harry is a hero among the school.

Responce: I have never read a Harry Potter book, and I tell you what; they are really neat! I thought it was going to be silly, all of the wizards and Trolls. But it keeps your attention so good; I see why everyone reads them. There is always something going on that makes you want to just keep reading. I love the whole idea of a little boy who lost his parents and then turns out that he can be a hero.

Teaching Ideas: This would be a great book for 5th grade literature to teach about fantasy. It would definitely keep the students attention and get them excited about reading this kind of literature. and honestly, just like for this class, I think having the students make their own Mirror of Erised, to show their deepest desires. This activity makes you think about what is really important in life.


By Jack Prelutsky

Louder than a clap of thunder,
louder than an eagle screams,
louder than a dragon blunders,
or a dozen football teams,
louder than a four-alarmer,
or a rushing waterfall,
louder than a knight in armor
jumping from a ten-foot wall.
Louder than an earthquake rumbles,
louder than a tidal wave,
louder than an ogre grumbles
as he stumbles through his cave,
louder than stampeding cattle,
louder than a cannon roars
louder than a giant’s rattle,
that’s how loud my father SNORES!

Response: hahah I love this poem, because this is MY dad!!! It reminds me of the onetime our school went on a camping trip and my dad chaperoned and slept in the boy’s cabin. That night everyone woke up to the sound of all the boys screaming, they thought someone had a chainsaw in their cabin!!!! (My dad's snoring!)
I love the sounds in this poem... grumble, rumble, and roar...this poem is formed in a limerick, with the rhythmic pattern being every other line.

Monday, April 7, 2008


Prior to reading informational text: I don’t really remember reading a while lot of informational text. I think it is because I have my mind set that it is very boring and bland. I don’t ever feel wowed or excited when hearing I have to read such text, especially which has to do with history.

Title: Rosa
Written by Nikki Giovanni
Illustrator: Bryan Collier
Publisher: First Scholastic, 2005
Genre: Picture Book, Biography K-5
Awards: Caldecott Honor Book and Coretta Scott King Award

Summary: Rosa worked in the alternative department in Alabama in the year 1955. She is known as the greatest seamstress in the town. She got off early on day and went to go home on the bus. She paid just as everyone else did and noticing that the all black section was full she sat in the ‘neutral’ section where blacks and whites could sit. After the bus driver told her to get up once the bus became crowded, Rosa stood her ground. Even being threatened she did not move, she was soon arrested. A lady named Jo Ann Robinson who was a colored professor and the president of Woman’s Political Council rallied 25 women who worked hard making posters that said “No Riders Today, Support Mrs. Parks” “Stay Off the Bus.” Martin Luther King became their spokes person. People from all around started sending shoes so people in Montgomery Alabama could walk. After a year in November of 1956 the Supreme Court ruled that segregation on buses was illegal.

Response: I have seen several books and heard many stories on the Rosa Parks sit down on the bus. But I really liked this one! I thought the pictures were great and I liked how the story told what needed to be said and no more. I think this will allow the young reader to stay interested and make the facts easier to see. I really like how the illustrator mentions that he used a yellowish hue throughout all the pictures because when he visited Alabama the first thing he noticed was the heat.

Teaching ideas: I might have a younger classroom (2-3) graders make posters like Jo Ann did, I would have them make up their own catchy slogan or sentence. This allows them to be creative while also, hopefully, creating a spark in them to show simple ways to voice ones opinion.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Comparison and research from Cinderella stories

The Rough-Face Girl:
Setting: An Algonquin tribal village on Lake Ontario, in Canada.
Characters: The Rough Face Girl, the invisible being, the cold hearted sisters, father, invisible being’s sister. These characters were a little more different than the traditional tale I was use to. Throughout the whole story she had a father and there was no step mother. This could be in the culture because the only thing I cold find on it is that the tribe is very close like a family; they might not get divorced and or remarried. Also like in most Cinderella stories the man that the Cinderella marries is more wealthy and has much more to offer, which is what the invisible spirit did, gave her fine things and restored her beauty.
Cultural markers: I loved all of the cultural markers in this story there were wigwams, nature pictures, moccasins, buckskin dresses, Jewlry, beaded clothing. I think that all of these things are a big part of who the Algonquin people are. There are roughly 8,000 Algonquin Indians left in Canada today. The French are the first to call this tribe Algonquin it is believed that they were trying to say elehgumoqik, which means “our allies.” The tribe is believes in the afterlife and are firm believers in witch craft. Their clothes and shelter all came from trees or animal skins. They were very one with nature. The present of spirits and nature is a huge theme in this story.

Smoky Mountain Rose an Appalachian Cinderella:
Setting: Smokey Mountains
Characters: Rose, the trapper, Seb, Liza, Gertie, Annie. This story had more of the traditional type characters with the cold hearted step mother and two step daughters with a rich man to marry.
Cultural Markers: language is the biggest cultural marker in this story. The dialect in the heart of the Appalachians is distantly different than mainstream American English. This story by Alan Schroeder does a great job depicting such dialect. The way it’s written and the phrases used are typical Appalachia dialect. Many of these backwood folks are thought to be uneducated; this is due to the extended time it took to get schools in some of these areas. The Appalachians are the second largest mountain system in North America, this accounts for the underdeveloped lifestyle that most think of when thinking of the Appalachians. Roads were nearly impossible to make easy. They had to follow gorges or river systems and valleys, making them much longer and generally more dangerous. Family values are extremely important in this area. It started form the 1700’s when Daniel Boone first traveled across the mountains searching for a path to the old west (Ohio, Kentucky…). Few people inhabited the mountains so families were few and far between, you had to obey and help your family because there was no one else around. I think this Cinderella story does a good hob of showing this especially at the end when rose doesn’t disregard her evil step sisters and loves them just the same. The outfits in this story are typical of the mountain regions; overalls and country dresses, lace up boots. They are all practical to work in.

Smokey Mountain Rose

Title: Smoky Mountain Rose an Appalachian Cinderella
Author: Alan Schroeder
Illustrator: Brad Sneed
Genre: Picture Book, Traditional literature, Folk Tale
Publisher: Puffin Books, 1997
Grade Level: k-5

Summary: Rose’s father, a trapper, gets married to a widow in town with two daughters. The two daughters of Gertie, the new mother, were mean and vain. Annie and Liza the two mean sisters made poor Rose do every chore. The father could see what was going on and it broke his heart but he figured it would start to much commotion if he tried to say anything, because talking to Gertie was like “kickin’ an agritated rattler.” After a while the father died, Rose was heartbroken. After Gertie lit into Rose about mopping around, she was about worked to death doing all the chores. There was a rich young man on the other side of the creek. “Made his fortune in snowbellies and grits” they say. Well his folks decided to have a “shindig” were they invite the entire town, to see if he could find him a wife. After the two snobby daughters leave with Gertie, Rose is cryin and one of the hogs tells her to get up real fast “like ye got a whompus cat bitin’ at yer britches” and her rags turned into a beautiful party dress. So with a watermelon and two field mice Rose had her a big wagon and two horses. And the final touch was a pair of glass slippers. As soon as she walked into the barn for the square dance seb, the rich young man, ran right up to her. at midnight she ran out the door and tried to hurry home, in the process she lost one of her slippers. Seb went around to all the twon trying to find who could fit in the glass slipper, and of course Rose’s foot fit perfect. After the two step sister figured Rose was marring into money they acted like real sisters treating her nice. And Rose was to sweet to do anything but be nice.

Response: This is absolutely my all time favorite Cinderella story. And honestly I think it is now my second favorite children’s book. I LOVED the way this story was written the dialect was priceless. I found myself laughing while I was reading it trying to say all the words out loud. You fall in love with sweet Rose right from the beginning. She is the most humbling character I have ever seen. I almost would have preferred illustrations that made the character more beautiful, for example with not such large hips and such. But I think it’s meant to portray the look of the Appalachian people so I definitely don’t mind it! I loved everything down to the fact that the pig was the fairy godmother. Everything about this tale made me smile!

Teaching Ideas: I would use this story in telling about literature and Cinderella stories for sure. I would also use this in social studies when discussing geography I would use this story with any grade looking at dialect. It is so unique and this story shows it perfectly. I would allow my students to research this culture especially, because it a culture that is alive in our own state that many people don’t know about. I would have them put together a creative venn diagram of similarities and differences with their own culture.

The Rough-Face Girl

Title: The Rough-Face Girl
Author: Rafe Martin
Illustrator: David Shannon
Genre: picture book, folk tale, traditional literature
Publisher: Puffin Books, 1992
Grade Level: 3-5
Awards: Georgia Children’s Picture storybook award; Nebraska’s Golden Sower award

Summary: In the village of the Algonquin tribe there was a huge wigwam were an invisible man lived. His sister said the only one who can marry him is the one who can see him. In this village was also a poor man who had three daughters, two had stone cold hearts. The two daughters would tease and make fun of the other daughter and called her Rough Face girl. Her hands, arms and face became burnt and scarred from the branches that popped and sparked because her sisters made her sit by the fire and feed the flames. The two mean sisters went to the invisible being’s wigwam were they were dressed in their finest clothes were they said they were to marry him. The invisible beings sister asked them “if you have seen my brother what is his bow made out of?” after not being able to answer the questions correctly, they went home. The Rough Face Girl asked her father for the same nice dress, moccasins and beads as the other sisters had and replied that he had nothing left but broken shells and old worn moccasins. She wanted to marry the invisible being. She made her own outfit complete with a bark dress, shell necklace and old shoes. After answering all the questions correctly. The invisible being was the beauty in nature his bow being the rainbow. The Rough Face Girl then baths in the lake and dressed in things that the invisible beings sister gives her. Once bathed in the lake her skin became smooth and hair became long and beautiful, just as her heart on the inside. And then they finally marry!

Response: This was an adorable tale! I liked how it was a little bit different than the one I was used to. She had a father through the whole story with no evil step mother. Her enemy really was herself. She could see the beauty in everything around her, except herself. The invisible being saw her inner beauty right away. This was a very romantic tale! I loved it. I also enjoyed the pictures as well. The illustrator is my favorite illustrator, David Shannon. I loved the way he captured the bright colors of the clothing, paintings, and nature. I loved the picture when she is walking to meet the invisible beings sister she see nature all around her with his face in it.

Teaching Ideas: I would definably use this book to while discussing Native Indian Tribes. It shows there wigwams, moccasins and deerskin dresses in great detail. I would also use this book while discussing different variations of folk tales of traditional tales in general.

I Poem

My Cinderella I Poem is linked here. The two Cinderella versions are the Algonquin version The Rough-Face Girl. and the Appalachia version (my new all time favorite!) Smokey Mountain Rose.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Hokusai: The Man Who Painted a Mountain

Title: Hokusai: The man who painted a mountain
Author/Illustrator: Debrah Kogan Ray
Publisher: Francis Foster Books, 2001
Grade level: 3-5
Genre: biography, picture book

Summary: This book is about the life of Hokusai (1760-1849) who became a famous painter in Japan. He was born into poverty with no idea who his father was. He taught himself to drawl from when he was very young. His mother would tell great stories of Mt.Fuji and promised they would one day make the trip to go to it. Hokusai mother died when he was one 6 years old. He then went to live with is uncle and helped them polish mirrors. His cousins would frequently make fun of him because he liked to drawl. At nights when he was sure he was alone he would take scrap paper and a piece of charcoal out of the stove and drawl. When he was old enough to go to school is was so excited to go and learn the Japanese characters because the symbols represented the word, like an art form. At 18 years old he was invited to become a pupil of a famous master, this is when he decided to become an artist. soon he started selling pictures to many rich people. This moved him to a high social rank. Japanese art had many rules and the masters got very angry and Hokusai for wanting to try all kinds of art forms, which was against the rules. He ended up going to Mt.Fuji, like his mother always wanted, and made his most famous art piece thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji which took him until he was 70 to complete.

Summary: I really enjoyed this book because it had outstanding bright pictures. On the bottom of every page was some sort of Japanese fact of Japanese character and it showed how to write it. Each word or fact would be related to the picture for example when Hokusai goes in the print shop it gives the japans character and name for printer (suri-shi), engraver (hori-shi) and artist (eshi).

Teaching Ideas: I would definitely use this book when discussing artist or even Japan. This is a great book to start showing Japanese characters and letting the student research the Japanese alphabet and write their name in Japanese. I remember doing this in school and using a calligraphy pen, I thought it was the neatest thing ever! Because it is indeed like an art form, it takes a lot of precision and very slow movements.

Bio Poem:

Japanese artist, print maker, poor, never satisfied.
Mother, uncle.
Lover of mother, school, Mt. Fuji.
Who feels alone, passion, unsatisfied.
Who find happiness in print making.
Who needs art.
Who gives us the thirty six views of Mt. Fuji.
Who fears failure, incompletion, conformity.
Who would like to see his mother.
Who enjoys Mt. Fuji’s scenery.
Who likes to wear kimono when he travels.
Resident of Edo (now Tokyo), Japan.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Lon Po Po

Genre: novel/ realistic fiction Title: Lon Po Po
Author/Illustrator: Young, Ed
Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers, 1996
Genre: Picture Book, Traditional Literature, Folk Tale
Grade Level: K-3
Awards: 1990 Randolph Caldecott Medal

Summary: This is the Chinese version of little red riding hood. It starts off with three sisters being left alone in the house because their mother went to see their grandmother, known as Po Po, for her birthday. The wolf dresses up like Po Po, and enters the house. They all lay down for nap when the three girls start noticing that ‘grandma Po Po has long nails and a long furry tail. The oldest sister notices that it is a wolf in disguise and come up with a master plane how to use the Ginkgo tree to kill the wolf. They hoist him up and end up dropping from a height that kills him. They run back inside and lock door and wait for their mother to return to tell her how they defeated the wolf.

Response: I love almost all the traditional literature that everyone was told when they were younger. I was unfamiliar though that other cultures had similar tales, just retold. I really liked this version. The daughters were so clever to use the resources they had around them to defeat the wolf. This was a very cute story. I also really liked how the pictures were displayed. They were panel like pictures that told the story in itself.

Teaching Ideas: This is a great book for comparing and contrasting in literature. You could use the traditional little red riding hood story and this to create Venn diagrams. It is also great while studying other cultures. If I had an older group of students I would see if they could find another familiar traditional tale that was retold in a different culture. And have them share it with the class.

Venn Diagram

This is my Venn Diagram comparing and contrasting the traditional "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" by Jim Aylesworth and "The Three Snow Bears" by Jan Brett. I am hoping to teach lower grades so I tried to make it understandable to k-2. I think it turned out pretty cute! The figure in the top left corner of the poster represents the traditional three bears house. The one on the top left conrner of the poster represents the igloo on ice in the three snow bears. This assignment was a blast!!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Swamp Angel

Title: Swamp Angel
Author: Anne Isaacs
Illustrator: Paul O. Zelinsky
Publisher: Puffin Books, 1994
Grade level: k-5
Genre: traditional literature, picture book
Awards: 1995 Caldecott Honor Book

Summary: When Angelica Longrider was born she was already adult size. She lives in Tennessee out were the swamps are. Because of her size she helped the town the best she could. She built cabins and lifted wagons, and helped people when in danger in the water. But when a big mean bear named Thundering Tarantion comes to ruin her town’s way of life, she steps in to help again. The town holds a contest to capture the bear. Angelica enters even though the men tell her to go bake something. She wrestled the bear five days straight, until they feel asleep. While Angleica was sleeping she snored so loud she made a tree fall right on Thundering Tarantion and killed him! There was a big celebration were everyone ate bear meat.

Response: I thought this book was adorable! I have never even heard of it before. This was a great tall tale. I really liked Angelica “Swamp Angel” she was so whole hearted and sweet even though she was huge! I loved how even though Angelica was a girl she bucked up and fought with the boys and won! This was a great story with super illustrations. It was very unique the way the illustrations were done on wood, things like this fascinates me. I loved how they had borders as well.

Teaching Ideas: I loved how women were seen in this tale. I would probably use this story in introducing strong women in the younger grades. I would even use this book while discussing tall tales in English with upper grades. I just loved this book it was a very unique wonder example of a tall tale. I would then have the students write a tale of their own.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Kelly of Hazel Ridge

Title: Kelly of Hazel Ridge
Author: Robbyn Smith van Frankenhuysen
Illustrator: Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen
Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
Grade level: k-5
Genre: realistic fiction

Summary: Robbun and Gijsbert bought an hold farm “Hazel Ridge Farm” and later had two daughters. One daughter is Kelly, that’s who is in this book. Kelly gets an assignment from her teacher saying to write a story about someone or something that has been very important in your life. Kelly is frustrated at first because she has no idea what to write. After walking around her farm seeing all the animals that are so natural to her, she realizes how great it is. She thinks back to when her family and her started preserving the farm and planting trees, digging ponds, and making habitats for the animals and she realizes that they aren’t just doing it for themselves their doing it for her, so she can have a place that is as magnificent as their Hazel Ridge Farm. Once the dinner bell rings Kelly and her two big dogs race home. She tells a story of how she use to be scared there was a monster outside her window but her mom went to the widow and “Whooo-hoooo” out the window and Jackson the owl answered, an owl they had rehabilitated. Her mother said that there was no need to be scared because Jackson perches outside her window to protect her. And she was never scared at night again. Kelly places an owl pellet in her nature treasure box and writes in her journal about her adventures.

Response: One of my new favorite books!!!! If you have not read one in this series I beg you to at least pick it up and look at the pictures. I absolutely love this book it is one of three in the series and will be getting the other two just as soon as I can. The pictures in this book I believe are acrylic paint on canvas. They are breathtaking! I don’t know why I especially like the detail in Kelly’s hair. It goes through and tells all sorts of ways and reasons to preserving land and creating habitats for animals were humans are not allowed. It gives an introduction and gives you a background about their farm and how they came to own it, I think this really adds to the story because its real and this makes it more real having the author tell you that Kelly is their actual daughter. Also the last page in the book tells you how to create your very own nature treasure box and things that might go in it.

Teaching Ideas: This book will definitely be in my classroom, regardless of what grade I teach. I think this would be a great book for 3rd graders in a science curriculum. The whole book is about preserving wildlife and different sorts of animals and their habitats. I would allow my students to create a nature treasure box just as Kelly did. Have them go around the playground, a park, their house and just explore nature and find things that interest them. And after about a week everyone bring in their box and see what questions arise out of the artifacts that were brought in. this would also be an outstanding book to read to get the students motivated to maybe take on a wildlife protection project and maybe help create a habitat at a near by lake for birds and reptiles that live their.

To the Beach!

Title: To the Beach!
Author: Linda Ashman
Illustrator: Nadine Westcott
Publisher: Harcourt, Inc.
Grade level: k-2
Genre: Picture book/ realistic fiction

Summary: This family is packed and ready to go to the beach on a beautiful sunny day. But then one of the daughters yells that they left the dog at home. So they turn the car around and go get Fido. On their way again dad remembers the umbrella so the turn around to go get it. After taking off again the little boy yells for his “ducky pail” so they turn around and go get that too. Their day continues like this until they finally got everything packed and are almost to the beach when a big storm comes and its pouring rain. So after the do a u turn and head back home, unpack the car…then the sun come back out. So through all the stuff in the front yard and enjoy the sun right there at home.

Response: I thought this was a cute book. I feel like I have days like this! I really liked how this family made the best of their day even though it started off so hectic. And in fact it might have even turned out better because now when they are done they don’t even have to drive home!

Teaching Ideas: I would use this book to discuss the weather probably with kindergarteners of first graders. I would use it to point out how unpredictable the weather is! Ask the class for any stories were they were at the park, beach, outside when they thought it was going to be a sunny day when it started to rain. I might also use this book to show that even though it looks like this family was going to have a bad day, they made the best of it and ended up have a great day all together because they improvised. I might then give the class a scenario like they were looking forward to a spend-the-night party when they found out at the last minute their friend couldn’t come. What could they do to make the best of it? Rent a movie and watch it with mom and dad? Or use that time to have fun by yourself?

Airy Fairy: Magic Muddle!

Title: Airy Fairy: Magic Muddle!
Author: Margaret Ryan
Illustrator: Teresa Murfin
Publisher: Barron’s
Grade level: 2-3
Genre: chapter book/ traditional literature/ Fairy tale

Summary: Airy Fairy is a student at Fairy Gropplethrorpe’s Academy for Good Fairies. She is clumsier and messier than all the other fairies. In this book there is to be a fairy Olympics were all the fairies compete in an athletic event. So during their training Airy Fairy seems to cause some confusion causing a pile up in the gym during the run, falls off the rope climb. But throughout her clumsy mistakes there always seems to be Scary Fairy around. She shakes the rope during the rope climb, pushes the ladder during the tree climb which makes Airy Fairy fly off her horse into the icy pond. But since Scary Fairy is related to the head master she never gets in trouble. But in the Fairy Olympics since Scary Fairy had made it so hard for Airy Fairy in practice the actual Olympics was a breeze she won first place, thanking scary Fairy for helping her practice with all her nasty tricks.

Response: I thought this book was very cute! I can see especially little girls really enjoying this silly fairy tale. What I also liked about it is that it is a chapter book, making the student feel proud of what they are reading but it is also very enjoyable it has many amusing events happen. The other thing I like is that it is a series, so if the student liked one, they could read the others.

Teaching Ideas: I would definitely talk about bullying and mean tricks that people can get hurt in. I would ask the students if they had ever known anyone like Scary Airy? And that person made them feel? Also I would make a chart and go through the catastrophes that Scary Airy cased looking at how bad the outcome could have been. For example when she shook the rope swing and made Airy Fairy fall, she could have broken a bone and gotten really hurt. Or when Airy Fairy fell of her horse and slid into the icy pond, she could get very sick due to lowered immune system. It could be related to science and bodily injuries as well.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Title: Windsong
Author: Lynn Hall
Publisher: Charles Scrubner's Sons, 1992
Genre: novel/ realistic fictions
Grade: 4-6

Summary: Marty a little girl is a helper at Orland’s greyhound breeding facility. In one of the litters a white, underweight, whiny pup is born and Orland decides to trash it until Marty says she will take it and train it. So she raises it. For the first couple weeks of life Marty is the only one that can get little windsong to eat or stop whining. After winsdsong is full grown they test her on the tack, she fails because she is too shy to even finish a round. So Orland once again says he has to “take care” of windsong since she is not fit to be a racer. Marty begs for the dog to come home with her knowing her brother has horrible allergies. Once home with windsong the family decides with marty’s brother being so allergic that the dog can not stay. So she takes windsong to her old piano teachers house, they call her Ushie. After a while Ushie doesn’t even want Marty to come visit the dog anymore because she says it her not martys. Marty leaves windsong with Ushie in hopes of running a kennel like Orland.

Response: I got so excited when I found this book because it is a dog book. The insides cover states how this little girl saved this pup and helped raise it. Honestly this was an awful book. I hate sad endings! And some of the parts to this book I thought were too mature for students. There was a love affair going on between two married couples. It described what happened to the unfit pups in the breeders litter, the breeder killed them. He would also kill them if he gave them a chance to grow up and weren’t fast enough on the track! And at the end the little girl doesn’t end up with the dog! It started off very sweet with the little girl saving this underweight greyhound because the breeder was going to kill it. And she takes it home and it all goes down hill after that. What made the book even worse to me is that the little girl wanted to be just like Orland, the dog breeder! All in all I just didn’t really like this book.

Teaching ideas: I wouldn’t teach this book, but I am putting it in my selection because I read it! But things that were incorporated were dominant and recessive genes from a breeding stand point, in science. Also selfishness was a big issue in this book.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Junie B. Jones Has a Peep in Her Pocket

Title: Junie B. Jones Has a Peep in Her Pocket
Author: Barbara Park
Illustrator: Denise Brunkus
Publisher: Random House, 2000
Grade level: 2-3
Genre: novel/ realistic fiction

Summary: Junie B. Jones is in school; kindergarten that is, and finds out school will soon be over and have to go to the next grade. But before she moves up the whole class gets to go on a class field trip to a farm! Everyone was excited except for Junie. She went home and explained to her parents that horses are evil and can stomple you in the ground, and roosters can peck your head into a nub. After her mother telling her she would go on the field trip, even though she didn’t want to, she arrives at the farm very nervous. The farmer takes Junie under his wing and shows her around the farm. She gets to be the farm helper, which of course means she gets to tell everyone what they need to do. At the end Junie finds this very cute little chick and thinks that it is just wonderful. Come to find out that little chick would grow up to be a rooster that Junie was so scared of. She figures maybe the farm is a fun place to go.

Response: I have never read a Junie B Jones book. And she is hysterical. My favorite parts are when she is just larger than life and is a confused typical little 6 year old. She gets very confused while Mrs. is explaining how school will be over, but not for good, only the summer. And I love when she was telling about the show she watched on TV “when ponies attack” she was just a very straight forward little girl and took everything so seriously and believed everything she heard. Through Junies actions and the was she looks from the pictures she reminds me so much of this little girl I babysat named Olivia. She responds in the same way Junie does.

Teaching Ideas: I think this would be a good book for students to see that everything isn’t always as it seems. Another thing I would point out is that you shouldn’t believe everything you hear or see on TV. Especially in today’s world I think that lesson in itself would be beneficial. But you could also have the students make a collage of pictures or words that tell a story of a time that they thought was going to be boring or awful that turned out pretty good.

Amber Brown: I, Amber Brown

Title: Amber Brown; I, Amber Brown
Author: Paula Danziger
Illustrator: Tony Ross and Jacqueline Rogers
Publisher: Scholastic, 1999
Genre: Novel/ realistic Fiction
Age Range: 3-5

Summary: This book is written from the point of view of a sweet, average, 10 year old named Amber Brown. She constantly refers to herself as “I, Amber Brown” She says she does it because she’s not mom’s Amber Brown, or Dads, or Student Amber Brown. But just herself I, Amber Brown. Amber’s parents are divorced and she has just discovered that her dad was moving back in town where she and her mother live. Throughout this book Amber discusses her feeling about her mother’s attitude towards her father and how it upsets her. Once her dad comes in town she tricks her dad into getting her ears pierced, even though her mother forbidden her. This obviously causes problems between Amber’s mom and dad. Another scene that unfolds is that Amber’s dad promised her she could help pick out his apartment, but one night her father surprised her and took her to his new house. Amber was very upset and had to explain why. But towards the end everything comes together the best it can.

Response: I thought this book was very cute and very realistic. I know my parents are divorced and do all the same things Amber’s parents do. Although I was much older when it happened so I didn’t care as much, at 10 years old those are awful things to her about your dad or mom. Another issue Amber comes across is that her dad broke a very big promise to her and she goes on to explain that he had no idea why she mad. I think all children go through this at one point or time. I think that kids will really be able to relate to Amber and her books are very humorous. If I have a higher grade such as 3-5, I will definitely have Amber Brown on my shelf.

Teaching Ideas: There are a huge number of teaching ideas in this book! A couple of possibilities include discussing families and how all of them are different. Amber’s parents are divorced in this book, as will many of the parents of the students in the class room. Another issue was playing one parent against another or bending the truth, like when Amber got her earrings. But what I might do to use all the ideas is to have the student write a paragraph on each issue found in the book and think of a different way Amber could have handled it. And maybe let them write an issue that happened in their life when they could have handled it differently.

Friday, February 22, 2008

There's a Wocket in my Pocket!

Title: There’s a Wocket in my Pocket!
Author: Dr.Seuss
Publisher: Random House, 1996
Genre: Picture book
Age Range: K-1

Summary: It’s a silly story about a little boy who goes around and finds make believe creatures in or on things that rhyme with it. For example he finds a zamp in a lamp. And a Wocket in his pocket.

Response: This is definitely a lower grade book. But kids love silly! And that’s what Dr.Suess’s books are. They have bright images and silly words; it’s a tongue twister that I think kindergartener or first graders would really like.

Teaching Ideas: This would be a good book to look at rhyming words in an English curriculum. You could even have the students draw a make believe creature in or on an object and name it something that rhymed with the object.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Three Snow Bears

Title: The Three Snow Bears
Author: Jan Brett
Publisher: G.P Putnam’s Sons
Genre: Picture Book/ multicultural/ traditional literature
Age Range: k-3

Summary: This book is a revised version of the three bears with goldilocks. The ‘goldilocks’ in this story is a little Inuit girl named Aloo-ki. And the three bears are snow bears that live in igloos. She first drinks out of each bears bowl deciding that the littlest bowl was not to hot or to cold. Then she finds three pairs of boots, with the littlest ones fitting just right. She then goes to the room with a long sleeping bench piled with three different mounds of fur blankets, with the littlest one that was warm and cozy and just right. The snow bears come back and find their bowls empty, their boots had been warn, and their beds slept in, in fact baby bear finds that little Aloo-ki is still in his bed. Aloo-ki jumps out of bed through the papa bears legs and back on her dog sled were everyone waved goodbye.

Response: AMAZING images! I wanted to touch the bears and rub his white very fuzzy looking fur, and touch these beautiful carved bowls, and the soft jackets! Oh the imagery in this book is nothing like I have ever seen. Everything honest to goodness looks so real like you could touch it. The little girl is precious. I love how it shows so many things from the Inuit culture. The utensils, beds bowls, clothes, boots, houses were totally different than anything you would find around here. I loved all the detail to the home. Another thing I found very neat is that each page has almost like a border, telling a whole nether story. If you haven’t seen this book I would highly recommend that you do! I have seen some of her other books like the mitten, but this is my favorite!

Teaching ideas: I would obviously use this book to discuss the Inuit people. In fact I think you do this in the 5th grade. I remember each student having to make igloos out of sugar cubes. One thing that I might do in the classroom is talk about the detail in all their possessions such as clothes, utensils, beds, tools, any object. And have each student or pair of students’ research how they made these objects and what efforts went into them and to see if they could make some kind of object (tool, clothes, utensil) that the Inuit’s might use. This book could also be used to discuss the different kinds of wildlife in Canada or any artic area.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Aleutian Sparrow Free Verse Poem

This novel is written in free verse poetry.
Each poem has a title, giveing direction and insight to the reader
even before begining.
Each are emotional diary like entries.
They are no more, no less than what the writer wants to share.
your eyes follow along because each poem is so short.
while your heart follows along becasue the alutian people are so hopeful.
Through hard times and bad situations the free flowing verses never show anger
only insight into a loving and uplifting tribal community.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Skippyjon Jones

Title: Skippyjon Jones Color Crazy
Author: Judy Schachner
Publisher: Dutton Children’s Books
Genre: Picture Book/ Colors
Age Range: K

Summary: Skippyjon Jones is a Siamese cat with very large ears. He goes through the book with crayons and colors different color pictures. He draws big blue suns, tall Yellow grass, Pink sky, etc.

Response: I think this is a cute book for a kindergartener or younger child to learn and reinforce colors. I like the illustrations colored in crayons. And the little cat reminds me of my little puppy. She is a rat terrier and they have big ears too.

Teaching ideas: this would definitely been done with kindergarten or younger. I would use this book to reinforce colors and have the children draw pictures using these colors.

Henry and Mudge Get the Cold Shivers

Title: Henry and Mudge: Get the Cold Shivers
Author: Cynthia Rylant
Illustrator: Suzie Stevenson
Publisher: Bradbury Press, 1989
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Age Range: 3-5

Summary: This story starts out with Henry having a sick day, and Mudge loved it! He got to eat all Henry’s crackers when his parent gave him some. The next Henry felt good, but Mudge did not. Mudge had to go to the vet because he didn’t feel good. Mudge didn’t like the vet; he shivers and sheds every time he goes. The vet said he had a cold, so Henry took him home and took extra good care of him. The next day Mudge was feeling better and gave Henry a big kiss.

Response: I love Mudge. Mudge and Henry always seem to have great stories. I like how the book has mini chapters that are easy to read, but in big kid format. I think this format will really make a child want to read because it’s a chapter book. I like the water color pictures. Any child that has any kind of pet will really fall in love with this series.

Teaching Ideas: This would be a good book to talk about illnesses and hand washing. In this book Henry and Mudge both come down with a cold. It would be good to discuss what makes people sick and what we can do to prevent colds. Washing hands, no hand shaking, eating vitamin C…etc. A lesson plan I really liked that I would probably use with this book is a lesson on hand washing. You let each student hold out their hands and you squirt a lotion type liquid in their hands called “Glo-germ.” They then rub it in their hands and then are instructed to go wash their hands. When the students come back to the room they can each take their hands and look at them under a black light. They residue that they did not wash off will remain and be easily seen. This will show were students need to spend extra time on and show them how hard it is to get germs off their hands.

In the Small, Small Pond

Title: In the Small, Small Pond
Author: Denise Fleming
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company, 1993
Genre: Picture Book/ Realistic Fiction
Age Range: k-3
Awards: Caldecott Honor

Summary: This is a rhyming story about animals and their actions and sounds. It’s about all the activity that happens at just one pond. At this one pond there are turtles, ducks, fish, sparrows, frogs, muskrats, bugs, tadpoles, etc. It shows things that these animals would be doing in their habitat.

Response: I couldn’t find out what kinds of material were used to create these pictures, but I really wish I knew. These pictures are so bright and lovely. The colors are perfectly mixed so that the dirt looks like dirt and water looks like pond water. Since this is a rhyming story it creates almost a musical quality by building patterns and repetition.This is such a good book for children to learn about habitats, animals, and onomatopoeias. It showed a great variety of creatures that live in a pond environment. It covered animals that live in, on, under, and even near the pond. I can definitely see why it won the Caldecott Honor, and was suggested in the Temple text for books on nature and animals. I loved this book, especially the illustrations.

Teaching idea: Get the children to pick an animal. Then have them write five to seven sounds (onomatopoeias) that their animal could or would make. I would also have the students take the animal that they picked and research their habitat and discuss what other kind of animals live there. This could be a fun little lesson or a take home project for the students to complete. They could each then share making all the other students aware of their animal and habitat.

Dog's ABC, A Silly Story About the Alphabet

Title: Dog’s ABC, A Silly Story About the Alphabet
Author: Emma Dodd
Illustrator: Tucker Slingsby
Publisher: Dutton Children Books, 2002
Genre: Picture book/ ABC
Age Range: K-3

Summary: This is story about Dog as he goes through his day. He hits every letter in the alphabet starting his day by being hit with an “Apple” and barked because it hurt and scared a “Bird”, then a “Cat” chases the bird while “Dog then chases the cat. You get the idea. Throughout Dogs day he not only finds things that start with the alphabet but makes many fun sounds along his way like Bonk, Whew, Ribbit, Blub, Quack, etc. At the back of the book on one whole page it reviews all the alphabet letters and the things that start with them.

Review: I thought this was a good story using the alphabet. Instead of going through and saying A: apple. It creates a whole story while incorporating the alphabet in it. Then at the end I like how it reviews all the letters and the objects associated with that letter. The pictures were computer made is what it looks like, so all the colors are very bright and bold. The writing was typography, so it was fun reading it as well.

Teaching Ideas: This would obviously be a great backup reading to the alphabet. But what I really liked is all the fun sounds, so this book could also be used in a higher grade like 2nd to discuss onomatopoeias. You could let a child look at different pictures and let them make up there own sounds to put in. You can also have students create their own poem or story with onomatopoeias in it.

Speak To Me (And I Will Listen Between The Lines)

Title: Speak To Me (and I Will Listen Between the Lines)
Author: Karen English
Illustrator: Amy June Bates
Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2004
Genre: Poetry/ Multicultural/ Picture Book
Age Range: 3-5

Summary: This is a collection of poems by six San Fransico, inner-city, African Americans children about their school day. Most of the poems are non rhyming poems. Each are different stories about each child’s school day. One has a good day and brings his teacher a flower, the next gets sent to the principals, one has a new baby brother, one is a show off, and one is a day dreamer, etc. They all have stories to tell and they express themselves through poetry.
Like Tyrell “I just got here and
Already I don’t care about anything this day
Send me next door to Miss Cross’s room
And I don’t care
Bench me for recess
And I don’t care
Make me write: “I’ll do my homework quietly”
One hundred times
And I don’t care
I don’t care about anything this day
And you can’t make me.”

Response: This was a good book, because there was so many completely different stories. Each student was feeling something different on the same day. It shows the point of view on girls and boys, trouble makers and sweethearts, daydreamers, slackers, and hard workers. The illustrations are bright and detailed. I think it was done with pen or black charcoal and water color. I love the expression on each kids face, their very cute. My favorite poems throughout this book were Tyrell’s. He seems to have a hard time in school and does care, he gets sent to the office, and can’t wait to go home. This really gives the teachers a chance to see what going on a child's life and helps them "read between the lines" of their work.

Teaching Ideas: this would be a great book to begin a poetry lesson and a great way to share ones feelings and emotions. This shows the students that not all poems are happy. They can be about whatever you feel. I would take a class of 3rd graders and let them create their own poem on how they are feeling that day. I would also tell them to create another poem that made them feel this way today. We could then go around the room and who ever wanted to share could do so.

HENRY the Dog with No Tail

Title: HENRY the Dog with No Tail
Author: Kate Feiffer
Illustrator: Jules Feiffer
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books, 2007
Genre: Picture book/ Fantasy
Age Range: K-1

Summary: This book is about a sweet little Australian Shepard, named Henry, who has no tail. All of his friends have tails: his best friend a lab has a long tail, the pug has a curly tail, and the poodle has a fancy tail. Henry goes out to find a tail. He has a special tail made by a tailor, a very very long tail. So when he comes back to show it off, he figures out he can’t wag it! “What good is a tail that didn’t wag.” So he sets off again and ends up in a battery park, where he attaches one to his tail and it comes to life. A little too much for Henry. It has him swirling in the air like a helicopter until he decides to take the battery off. As he climbs down from a tree, again with not tail; Henry realizes that he is happy being himself, even with no tail.

Response: This book is precious, especially for dog lovers. It’s an adorable tale of a dog with no tail! He finds himself different from all the other dogs and is sad at first. But once realizing him having no tail is who he is. He comes to reason with it and likes being the Henry with no tail. The illustrations are very cute as well. It was created with charcoal pencil and water color. This story is also very funny so it makes it enjoyable for small children to read or listen too. For instance, Henry flies through the air like a helicopter, gets tangled in his own tail, finds a land of batteries, and meets new friends along his way.

Teaching Ideas: This is a great story to show diversity and uniqueness at a young age. This book could easily lead into a discussion on how people are different and what makes them unique. I would have a kindergarten class go around and say one thing they think is unique about them selves. And maybe in a small group they could go around and say something good about each student in the class.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Me Poem

(I'm not sure if I did this right but here it is!)

I am from saddle, from Blistex and Alpo.
I am from the two levels; brick …red, black, smell of charcoal.
I am from the _fern, tulip, bark, the shrub, rose, brown.I am from butting eggs and freckles, from Doris and David and Miller.
I am from the bad backs and glasses.
From come inside and wash your hands.
I am from Catholic when I was younger in the big churches with millions of people. Now, for 6 years, I go to my boyfriends church ‘United Church of Christ’. It’s very tiny, in a farming community, but I love it!
I'm from Atlanta and Ireland, Cranberry sauce and dry chicken.
From the Grandma who had Alzheimer’s and went into the hospital were my grandpa was sent after a acute heart attack. She was told no visitors so she said she would be back with her gun. When told she can’t do that. She saw nothing wrong with it, she was then taken back to one of her daughters house were she spent the week, the Aunt who caught her hair on fire while leaning over a candle at thanksgiving dinner, and the Dad who just got telling me that the front porch on his new house was the strongest ever, he stomped, and feel through the porch at that exact moment.
I am from old pictures on the mantle and old family portraits only in my room. Letters from my cousin while in Iraq, which couldn’t be bought not for a million dollars. While in Iraq he stayed for many years, he scared me to death with sotires of granades that landed under him and just happened to not go off, while the ones behind him exploded. He sent pictures of the granades and such.But he is now back in the states with a new wife and baby boy. He would do it agian in a heartbeat, I envy someone so brave.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom

Title: Moses; When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom
Author: Carole Boston Weatherford
Illustrator: Kadir Nelson
Publisher: Hyperion Books for Children 2006
Genre: Picture book/ Historical fiction/ multicultural
Age Range: 3-5
Award: 2006 Caldecott Honor Book

Summary: With out any support from anyone Harriet Tubman looks higher for help. God answers Harriet and gives her encouragement along her journey to freedom. God mentions to her that she is to be the Moses of her people and that is exactly what she is. She frees them all and leads them to the promise land, free soil!

Response: What beautiful pictures. The scenery is so real looking. I noticed while reading this book on my desk if you turn on the lamp the starts and sun in the book light up and the further you move the light away it looks like the sun is setting and such. I loved it! It reminds me of Thomas Kinkade’s art work. It is sensitive to the light. I loved how the writing was broken up as well. God’s words were all caps and bold. While Harriet’s actions were in regular text, her thoughts and words were in italics. This makes it much easier for a child to keep up on what is going on. This was a beautiful story, told in such an uplifting way.

Teaching Ideas: This book should obviously be used in the teaching of slavery and Harriet Tubman. It’s a great book that will keep the students attention the pictures and the different voices you can just imagine. You can just picture God’s big bellowing voice while Harriet’s is so much quieter and unsure.

What do you do with a tail like this?

Title: What Do You Do with a Tail Like This?
Author: Robin Page
Illustrator: Steve Jenkins
Publisher: Houghton Mufflin Company, 2003
Genre: Picture book/ Informative
Age Range: K-3
Awards: 2003 caldecott honor book

Summary: The Author goes through and describes each sense and informs about different types of animals. She says what do you do with eyes like these and goes on to show and describe different types of animals that use their eyes for different things. She goes through and uses eyes, feet, ears, nose, and mouth. The pictures used cut paper collage only.

Response: I loved everything about this book; the way it was set up, the information in it, and especially the pictures. The illustrator used only cut-paper collages to illustrate this book. And you can tell so much time was put in to this book. The papers were perfect colors and even textures. You can tell some were cut and some were torn or wrinkled to get that perfect look. I also really liked how it went through as a picture book and at the end of the book it ended up with definitions and a little background on each animal in the book. I was even unaware of half of the information in this book. For instances platypus, uses there nose to dig in mud…. I had no idea! I thought that was great because with that you can use this book with very young kids and older kids!

Teaching Ideas: This book could be integrated easily in a science class discussing animals. You could have the students pick one of the animals in the book they found interesting and have them do a little research on it. You could also use this book discussing the 5 senses; touch, sound, sight, smell, hearing. You could have each describe an animal that uses each and why. This would also be a great book in art if you were doing a session on paper collages. The pictures are fabulous.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

MArley and Me

Title: Marley and Me
Author: John Grogan
Publisher: Harper Paperbacks, 2008
Genre: novel, autobiography
Age: middle school

Summary: This book is told by John Grogan about the life of his rambunctious lab, Marley. They Marley and he is so cute but he chews everything, pees on everything and is deathly afraid of thunderstorms. He helps this family through some horrible trials, including the miscarriage of a baby, a little girl getting stabbed next door, being on the big screen and with work. His wife breaks down and starts beating on big ol Marley one day when she has had enough, and tells john to get rid of him. After a couple weeks her anger blows over, from the miscarriage and accepts Marley once again. He is the biggest goofball anyone can come across. He even flunks out of doggie training school. After Marley gets a little older the move upstate, were there is tons of snow. Marley loves to play init. As the years go by john notices ol' Marley becoming deaf, not being able to make it up the stairs. And it gets really hard for john to watch. Finally Marley dies and its a sad time for everyone, including the reader!

Response: oh my goodness this is the only book I have ever cried in. I balled like a baby! I loved Marley it is any young pup and any spoiled dog that is the baby and gets away with things. John does the best job describing the scene and Marley's expression. You actually feel like you are there watching the scene unfold. This was the greatest book in the world.

Teaching connections: I would absolutely give this to a middle school class to read to learn and feel lose. You get so attached with Marley and watch him grow up and in the end he has lived a long great life, but it makes you break down anyways.

Title: No, David!
Author: David Shannon
Illustrator: David Shannon
Publisher: Blue Sky Press, 1998
Genre: Humor/Picture book
Age Range: K

Summary: This book is about a little boy who likes to get into trouble. David hears “No” more than any word. He drags mud through the house, plays baseball inside, runs around naked, plays with his food, and won’t clean his room. But finally when he gets sent to time out mom ends with a “yes” and an “I Love You!”

Response: I can definitely see why this book won the Caldecott metal. The images are hysterical. Anyone that has kids or that has worked with small children feels like they can relate, I know I can. I worked as a two’s teacher for four years, and I have said “No” more than any word in that classroom. I love how this story ends; it’s just like real life, because no matter how mad the kids make you they always have your heart!

Teaching Ideas: This is a wonderful book. It would be a great book for a child’s first book. It has only a few words but it is fun and entertaining. This would be a good book to talk about behavior issues and attitudes. Also the book ends on a good note, of family love. The students can discuss their own families maybe even bring in pictures to make an art collage.

The Rain Came Down

Title: The Rain Came Down
Author: David Shannon
Illustrator: David Shannon
Publisher: Blue Sky Press, 2000
Genre: Picture book/Humor
Age Range:K-3

Summary:One Saturday morning it started to rain which first made the chicken’s squawk and after that ciaos just broke loose in the household. The dog was barking, the baby was crying, the mom was shouting. Then the policeman stopped by to see what all the commotion was about and then started the town in ciaos with cars honking, people yelling and arguing, things falling, people bumping into each other; until, the rain stopped. After the rain had stopped people were getting along, cars went on their way, the children got ice cream, and the family even went on a picnic all together mom, dad, baby, dog, cat, and chickens!

Response: I really liked this book. And once again the illustration was great. I really liked how this book could be used with a little bit older kids who have started to read full sentences. The book is very clean looking because the writing is at the bottom on all the pages and the pictures on top. This book makes me really want to know what his art media type is. The characters are cartoony but so life like I really like the way he can make the appearance that things are shiny. I am not real sure why I just think it makes it look more life like and funny. Also once the ciaos in town starts I really liked how on each page the people who were arguing were all similar. For example the beautician was arguing with the barber, the baker arguing with the pizza maker, and the little girl was arguing with the boy. It made the story even sillier.

Teaching Ideas: In the standard course of study for kindergarten one of the objectives is to identify different weather features including precipitation, wind, temperature and cloud cover. This would be a great book to spark a conversation and a lesson on weather. It's funny with wonderful illustrations so would be a great way to begin a lesson! Another lesson that could come of this book is being able to relate to situations, you could discuss how weather makes you feel.

Good Boy, Fergus!

Title: Good Boy, Fergus!
Author: David Shannon
Illustrator: David Shannon
Publisher: The Blue Sky Press, 2006
Genre: Humor/ Picture Book
Age range: K-1

Summary: This book is about a cute, spoiled and very happy white West Highland Terrier dog named Fergus. Fergus starts his day with chasing cats, belly rubs, and not doing amazing tricks but always ends up with a "Good Boy, Fergus!" He gets in trouble and makes messes throughout his day but once agian always ends up with a "Good Boy, Fergus!" He gets to chase motercyles and pee on anything in sight. He ends his day with a heaping bowl of dog food, and of course whip creme too! and finally drifts off to sleep when night comes.

Response: This is one of David's newest books, and probably my favorite. The illistrations are really what gets me. They are so bright and colorful, with simpy techniques but so much charecter. Fergus is not very detailed but he has so much expression on his face in each picture, you can tell excatly what hes thinking! This book reminded me of a picture book version of my favorite book in the world, Marley and Me. Another thing I really liked is his writing font, it's very simple and fun looking. As the words get bigger you can just hear the tone getting louder. I especially like the page were the words are large and very close together as if he is just pleading with Fergus to come in. I actually really like in some of the pictures how there was very little background behind Fergus, it was just one color, to really keep your attention on him. The story line was as cute as it could be. A cute and very happy pup gets into EVERYTHING. I have a little terrier of my own, althouh she is not as bad as Fergus, I definiatly see her in him! She always has that happy grin and chases cats and beggs for food, and of course the sweet little face ends up eventually with what she wants. She is always a "Good Girl, Zoie!" All in all I love this book!

Teaching Ideas: This book would definiatly keep the attention of a small children because of the hallerious story line and amazing picuters.It could be easily intergrated into a kindergarten or first grade classroom. In kindergarten the standard course of study states observe the similarities of humans to other animals, using basic needs, growth, and movement. With this book we can definiatly see that dogs and people need similar basic needs such as food, water, love, and shelter.(ok, some people would say love isn't a "need" but I think it is so I threw it in there.) Also you can use this book to show the animals movement jump, walk, run, and lay (which people can do too, you can even ask your children to do these movements.) Then maybe point out that dogs can scratch their head with their foot, not all people can do that. That would somrhting silly to try! A real activty you could have your studnets do (in first grade or up) is bring in a stuft animal and tell them that this is their live pet and they have to make a journal of everything they have done and given their pet. This will enhance writing, responsibilty, show basic needs, and compassion. Another quick idea is you could do a small lesson on nutrition, and mention how dogs arn't supose to eat whip creme!