I hope everyone is having a fantastic school year! I miss being in school but I am enjoying my maternity leave with these two: Although I’m not currently teaching, I’m hoping to catch up on some blog posts I started and didn’t finish year that will share center and projects from last year. I’ve also been working on a Frequently Asked Questions page that I hope will be ready soon and will answer a lot of the questions I get about starting and managing centers. In the meantime, I’d love to get some book recommendations (for me and the babies!). I feel a bit out of the loop of new kid lit since I’m not in a library at the … Continued
I just stumbled upon these great, FREE Eric Carle activities! They’re perfect for centers or author studies! They’re available through Gymboree for their new Eric Carle Collection, which is very cute by the way! And they have adult sized PJs which may be in my future…
I hope you’re off to a good start if you’re celebrating poetry month! I’m easing into it between finishing up projects and since we have so much testing going on, my schedule has been a little wacky. I’m doing a lot of centers I tried out last year and keeping my eye out for some new activities this year. If you have any poetry inspired centers to share, let us know! Some things I’m continuing from last year are Storybird, Table Top Poetry, my magnetic poetry center. As soon as I get Word Mover on my iPads, I’ll be using that and LEGO poetry is a big hit again this year. The moon poem is by a second grader and … Continued
I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned this center before! It’s one of the most popular centers in my library. It’s very easy to set up and the kids love it, week after week. I use one of my oil drip trays to display this center. I added magnets to the letters and change them up each week (check for bad words!). The words paper is where kids write words they find using the letters in the 3×3 grid. The paper is in the top half of one of my acrylic sign holders. This makes it possible to use dry erase markers to write the words. The objective is for students to find as many words as possible. Some classes like … Continued
I hope you all had a great start to the school year! I’m finally organized enough to get back into blogging more regularly. I have a bit of a brain-dump post of all the things going on in my new library. As you may know, Mr. Lodge and I moved (again) over the summer and I am back in my old district but in a new school. Moving again meant packing, cleaning, unpacking, and organizing a new home and a new library which kept me busy, busy, busy. I’m so excited to be back in an area we love to live and back working with an incredibly inspiring group of library teachers (if you follow @libraryreeder, @mkschoen, @thnfmatters, or @librarybrods, … Continued
I’m FINALLY getting around to posting about the fun poetry month activities I did at the end of last year! I think I’ve mentioned poetry has always been something I tended to avoid because I wasn’t very comfortable with it. I was inspired to give Poetry Month a shot after seeing a lot of fun-looking poetry activities on Pinterest and by other library teachers (especially Jennifer Reed!). One poetry activity I was looking forward to trying out all year was LEGO poetry. I used this as a center with K-4 and it was a hit! Many teachers even got in on the action! It was very interesting watching how students built their poems. Some kids created poems that read from … Continued
My goodness do I have a lot of catching up to do! Here is a little recap of my very busy May-June: AASL: Cari, Carolyn, and I submitted a proposal to AASL for the 2013 conference in November and were accepted! We will be presenting about centers in the elementary school library during the IdeaXchange portion of the conference. Come visit us! Big Move: This spring, Mr. Lodge and I made the decision to move back to Boston. After returning to Connecticut last summer, where we both grew up, we quickly realized Boston had become our real home. This decision was tough because we liked being closer to family and I loved my colleagues and students at my CT school … Continued
Between my spring book fair, typical end of year craziness, and some other big things Mr. Lodge and I have going on, I’ve been seriously neglecting my poor blog! I did some really fun poetry activities in April and early May that I’m very excited to share so keep an eye out for those! To make up for my lack of posts, here is a very cool video one of my 4th grade teachers sent me today. It’s the world’s longest book domino chain by the Seattle Public Library. It was created to build excitement for summer reading. If you haven’t seen it already, it’s definitely worth watching!
I don’t know about you but I just love Todd Parr. I love, love, love his books and so do my students. Here are a few Todd Parr activities we have done in the library! Reading Makes You Feel Good eBooksI read Reading Makes You Feel Good to kick off our Reading Celebration last month. I wanted to do some sort of school-wide activity around the book because we were focusing on being our school being a community of readers. I decided students could use the iPads to make Todd Parr inspired pictures about why reading makes them feel good and make an ebook. We used the Drawing Pad app to make the images. I saved the pictures and then we … Continued
I recently had a question about my Creepy Carrots Center I had during our school’s reading celebration. Since I missed the boat on a mock Caldecott, I used March’s Reading Celebration as a chance to read some of the Caldecott winners, like Creepy Carrots, Extra Yarn, and This is Not My Hat. Needless to say, the kids LOVED these titles. I saw a Creepy Carrots inspired poster created by some of Mrs. Crook’s students at WES Media Center and knew my students would love making creepy carrots for our library. I went through the orange and green paper scraps we had in the teacher’s room and made the orange paper into a variety of carrot shapes. I put out the orange carrots, green … Continued
Happy Poetry Month! I’ve shied away from poetry in the past because I’m not very comfortable with it. I did have a lot of fun with spine poetry last year and between that and a few other really inspiring poetry ideas I’ve seen around, I’m giving it a shot this year. I plan on sharing some of the fun projects and other centers (April vacation next week = blog catch up!) but I have a quick and easy poetry center or poetry activity for you today: Table Top Poetry. During my Kindergarten Mo Willems author study a few months ago, I was inspired by @the_pigeon’s dining room dinner doodles and covered one of my tables with bulletin board paper for … Continued
Thank you for so much positive feedback on Shelve-it! We have started working on our nonfiction version so feel free to leave an idea or topic for a nonfiction book spine. I tried to work in a few shout outs to family and friends in the fiction version and plan to add more in the nonfiction. I’d be happy to make a spine your students might recognize as “yours”!On another note, my fantastic sister-in-law is a second grade teacher and recently started blogging at Adventures in Grade 2. She is one of the most passionate, dedicated teachers I know and has great ideas to share so be sure to check her out!
First, I’m very excited for This Is Not My Hat and The One and Only Ivan! I actually just read Ivan last week and absolutely loved it. If you haven’t read it, do yourself a favor and read it. right. now.Second, I have been doing some rearranging in my library:I separated out the graphic novels and am slowly and steadily changing their call numbers to GN.After opening up 3 shelves by moving the graphic novels, I spread out my nonfiction collection so it’s a little less squishy in popular sections like sports and animals.I got tired of running around finding unicorn, mermaid, and dragon books in all sections of the library so I made a 1-shelf section of mythical creatures. I … Continued
Here’s my book fair recap, finally!Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the wonderful book fair tips! I did find it a little stressful but the kids had fun and I feel much better going into my spring fair since I (sort of) know what to do now!One of the best tips was to cook the weekend before because I’d be too tired during the fair to cook…boy was that true! I was wiped out every day. We ate a lot of take out and Mr. Lodge’s cooking that week. Here are some things that really helped things go more smoothly:**I put 4th graders in charge of advertising. They made posters to put all around the school and did … Continued
I have my first ever book fair this week…ah! I have some seasoned volunteers who are able to help out but I’m still nervous! The previous librarian had used Scholastic in the past and had booked this fair already. I’m not totally thrilled because the PTO-run Scholastic book fairs at one of my former schools always had a lot of junk – literal junk (toys), as well as a lot of junky books. Also, a lot of the paperback books I got for the library fell apart after a few reads, which was very disappointing. I like the idea of using an independent book store instead of Scholastic but there really aren’t any in my area (compared to Boston where … Continued