Sunday, November 3, 2013

Week of October 28

Kinder- This week we quickly reviewed all the characters and the things they did from last week’s book, Little Goblins Ten, in preparation of the next book.  Then we read Over in the Hollow, by Rebecca Dickinson.  As we read, we compared and contrasted the two books.  Students did an excellent job of remembering what characters were in both (monsters, ghosts, etc) and which were not.  They also remembered key words like cackle and swoop.  The noticed that the second book counted past ten, and were always able to remember what number we were on.  Overall, both the students and I love these two books!  The students were also very excited to be choosing from the Everybody shelves now, and I have also included a new shelf of “Everybody Non-Fiction” as I know I have lots of students wanting true books about everything from dinosaurs and puppies to cars and trains and holidays. 

Extra Kinder class- I read two books in this lesson, both of them from the Five Little Monkeys series by Eileen Christelow.  The first was Five Little Monkeys Reading in Bed (it was pajama day for this class), and the second was Five Little Monkeys Trick or Treat.  Students really loved both books- those silly monkeys!!

First Grade- We had so much fun reading Hallo-wiener, by Dav Pilkey.  It is a great funny story, but also an opportunity to remind students to be bucket fillers and not bucket dippers.  After we read the book, students made “hot dog buns” of the beginning, middle, and end of the story, and glued it onto their weiner dog!  This lesson was a great idea from

Extra First Grade- I read the book The Little Scarecrow Boy, by Margaret Wise Brown.  The students really enjoyed the faces that the little scarecrow made as he was learning to become fierce, like his father.  Then we watched a Brainpop Junior video about fall, and took the hard quiz together.  They did a great job picking up on details from the video!

Second Grade- First we read through the predictions students made last week about what they thought would happen (but only if the student wanted theirs shared) in Orange You Glad It’s Halloween, Amber Brown? By Paula Danziger.  They had written sentences and drawn pictures so I also shared their pictures.  Many were quite intuitive!  Afterwards, we finished the book.  It was so fun seeing students on the edge of their seats waiting to find out what Amber and Justin’s costumes were going to be!

Extra Second- Today I introduced students to a fantastic website called Storyline Online (  I told them that instead of me reading, we were having a “guest reader.”  This website is put together by the Screen Actor’s Guild, and each book is read by a famous actor or actress.  They also animate the pages of the books a bit and set it to music.  The end result is a really great product. We listened to Wilfred Gordon McDonald Patridge, written by Mem Fox, and read by Bradley Whitford.  This is a really beautiful story about a boy and his friend, an older woman, and how he helps her to remember.   Then we completed an activity where students wrote about and drew a picture that was about a memory that made them laugh.  This is an excerpt from  The full lesson includes creating a book of memories based on all the different types of memories found in the book, but due to time constraints, I only did one. 

Third Grade- Earlier in the year, I had read a Miss Smith book, by Michael Garland.  Students really enjoyed it, so this week I read Miss Smith and the Haunted Library. Students had a great time trying to be the first to remember what book the characters came from.  Marley’s Ghost was the most challenging for them!  After we read, students did a review of book parts.  Though most terms were really easy, I found a few gaps that I am glad we filled (like ISBN and the difference between illustrator and illustration).  For this we used a worksheet from

Extra Third Grade- We started class off reading Creepy Carrots, by Aaron Reynolds.  This is a really fun story that was a Caldecott runner up last year.  After the story, some students created displays of their colAR app productions, while others finished making the pictures with the apps.  Students really enjoyed using the iPads for this!

Fourth Grade-  We read through student predictions of what would happen after chapter 2 in the Monster’s Ring, by Bruce Coville (only with student permission to share).  Then we read Chapter 3 (one class talked me into reading Chapter 4 too!).  After reading, students went on Alexandria, our online catalog, and practiced searching by topic for Halloween terms like Frankenstein and ghost.  Students filled out a Haunted House sheet with the call numbers for each search term. 

Extra Fourth Grade- We started off reading Banshee, by Eve Bunting.  A good on-the-edge-of-your-seat story, but nothing too scary!  Then we had fun playing boys against the girls Genre Jeopardy, to review some of our genre terminology.

Fifth Grade- I started the class off reading on online encyclopedia entry about Day of the Dead, and then I read a Scholastic Magazine article on the same topic.  After the readings, I gave students hard copies of both articles and they worked in pairs to compare and contrast the information they found in the articles, recording their results in a Venn diagram.  Not only does this encourage cultural diversity, but it is aligned with the Common Core emphasis on nonfiction, close reading, and citing from the source.  We all compared notes as a large group at the end.  Students have such a great eye for detail, they picked out some really good details!

Sixth Grade- Students worked on their mystery genre webquest.  When I started this project, I pulled in LOTS of Carl Hiaasen and Wendelin Van Draanen books from other schools, in case students became interested in reading them after doing the research.  Those books have been going like hot cakes!  Unfortunately, I was not able to get in any extra Eric Berlin books, but our two copies of his books are out now too.  Overall, I think students are really enjoying the webquest and the opportunity to explore some new authors