It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a kidlit meme hosted by Jen and Kellee at TEACH.MENTOR.TEXTS. Lots of terrific books are reviewed by the readers here. The TBR lists grow long here. Plus, there is another meme hosted by Sheila at BOOK JOURNEYS that offers even more reviews of all kinds of books, adult and children. Enjoy!
Post on twitter with the hashtag #IMWAYR.
The second symbol shows that I'm participating in a reading challenge at Gathering Books. The Award-Winning book is More Than Anything Else.
Instead of a quote, I’d like to highlight a post I read lately. Katherine Sokolowski of Read.Write.Reflect wrote a letter to her students titled Why Should You Read? I thought you’d like to read it. It’s an idea to consider doing yourself, and it’s inspiring for all who read.
I’ve been reading, and reading, and reading, Cybil’s finalists for poetry. I am a second round judge, and while it is exciting to be “in” it, it has taken quite a lot of my reading time. This week I have looked through my own collection and chosen a few books to share that are from some favorite authors.
More Than Anything Else – Marie Bradby, illustrations by Chris K. Soentpiet
Booker T. Washington moved to a new place with his family in 1865 where his father, brother and he worked in a nearby salt works. This story shows a small part of his life, a grand inspiration when a black man comes through town and Booker sees the man reading a newspaper. He knows then that more than anything, he wants to learn to read. The paintings by Soentpiet are marvelous full-page spreads. It has won several awards:
ALA, IRA Children's Book Award, PBS story time Feature, Teacher's Choice, starred review School Library Journal, Best Book of 1995 by Book Links, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times.
A Dime a Dozen – Nikki Grimes, illustrated by Angelo
This is a great collection of poems about growing up and all the good and bad of that. This seems autobiographical because in it, Nikki Grimes writes about writing and also about those who are a little skeptical about her writing. In the title poem, one reads the line “Find another dream instead.” But also, later, “Someday she’ll be proud to say…my daughter the writer!” The drawings are realistically and beautifully done in pencil.
Painting the Wind – Patricia MacLachlan & Emily MacLachlan, illustrated by Katy Schneider
Beautiful story of the main character (young boy) who lives on the island and paints. In first person, he takes us through describing different kinds of painters who come to the island to paint, but until the end, he doesn’t realize how to “paint the wind”. Lots to celebrate here. The book is lovely with Katy Schneider’s gorgeous illustrations, showing numerous kinds of paintings and telling a little story about different painters. We see those who paint landscapes, still life, portraits, etc. The fact that the ocean is there makes me want to visit.
The Dragons Are Singing Tonight – poems by Jack Prelutsky, illustrated by Peter Sis.
I have forgotten about this, and for those of you who collect dragon books (I have a few) this one is a gem. It’s full of whimsy, like “I’m an amiable dragon/And I have no wish to scare” and “My dragon wasn’t feeling good/He had a nasty chill” or “I wish I had a dragon.” The art by Peter Sis is like others he has done, with full color spreads of dragons, in natural settings.
Brave Irene – William Steig
You must have read at least one of William Steig's books. This is not a funny one, but I thought I'd share that I've used this in a variety of ways, and lately for studying using strong verbs in writing. I taught the lesson to students who are 2nd and 3rd graders. It can also be used for predictions. It tells the story of Irene, who is taking a dress to a duchess from her seamstress mother, who is ill. The struggles she faces are tough, but Irene is a brave soul. It's just a terrific book with some important lessons to learn.
Still reading: The Marble Queen by Stephanie J. Blake, Book Love by Penny Kittle. I’ve also started Splendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schlitz. All good, but just struggling finding time to read any but a few pages of them.