My Two Blankets

April 28, 2016

My Two Blankets

by Irena Kobald & Freya Blackwood

Diverse Children's Books: My Two Blankets There's a Book for That

This book comes highly recommended by our former ELL teacher, now professor at USF, Mrs. Riddle!

Blurb from the catalog: Cartwheel moves to a new country with her aunt, and although everything is strange, including the language, her old blanket of words and sounds comforts her. Then Cartwheel meets a friend who introduces her to new words and sounds, and eventually Cartwheel creates a new blanket of language.

Kobald uses descriptive metaphors to explain how Cartwheel feels in her new country:

  • “When I went out, it was like standing under a waterfall of strange sounds.”
  • “I wrapped myself in a blanket of my own words and sounds.”

Use this to teach:

  • Metaphors
  • Building friendships/relationships
  • Understanding other cultures and others’ differences
  • Building classroom community

Read this book in connection with:

  • One Green Apple by Eve Bunting
  • The Quiet Place by Sarah Stewart
  • Grandfather’s Journey by Allen Say
  • The Matchbox Diary by Paul Fleischman
  • Dear Whiskers (chapter book) by Ann Whitehead Nagda
  • Inside Out and Back (chapter book written in prose) Again by Thanhha Lai

Stick and Stone

March 17, 2016

Stick and Stone
by Beth Ferry; illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld

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Blurb from the catalog: Stick and Stone are both lonely until Pinecone’s teasing causes one to stick up for the other, and a solid friendship is formed.

This book is great to teach:

  • Bully prevention (When Pinecone is teasing stone, stick stands up for stone instead of being a bystander)
  • Building Classroom Community
  • Friendship
  • Theme (this would be a quick mentor text for any unit on theme, but it would be an easy mini-lesson read-aloud for the 3rd grade theme unit)

Dare! Weird! and Tough!

March 16, 2016

Dare!
Weird!
Tough!
series by Erin Frankel; illustrated by Paula Heaphy

Click for more information on this title  Click for more information on this title  Click for more information on this title

This series is an amazing read-aloud series for your classroom when building classroom community or for classroom communities that are having troubles with bullying.  The three books are intertwined in that each book tells the story from a different girl’s perspective.

Weird–Louisa–“the one being bullied”

Dare–Jayla–“the bystander”

Tough–Sam–“the bully”

Teacher’s Guide

  • In particular, take a look at p10-11 of the Teacher’s Guide called “I Think It Means…” Students learn that what the characters are saying aren’t exactly what they always mean

Links on Bullying


Wild About Us!

March 14, 2016

Wild About Us
Written by Karen Beaumont
Illustrated by Janet Stevens

Book blurb from catalog: A group of animals at the zoo share the unique characteristics they like about themselves and one another.

This book would be great to help teach:

  • Differences
  • Acceptance
  • Building a Classroom Community
  • Positive Body Image

Excerpt from the book: “I’m Warty Warthog!  Can’t be who I’m not.  I am who I am and I’ve got what I’ve Got.  I have tusks!  I have warts!  But5 I like what I see!  In my own special way, I’m as cute as can be.  Yessirree!  We are all the way we are all meant to be!”


Separate is Never Equal

January 5, 2016

Separate is Never Equal

Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation

by Duncan Tonatiuh

Book Blurb: Describes how the Hispanic American Mendez family challenged the segregated California school system in 1947 after their daughter Sylvia was denied entry to Westminster School due to her ethnicity. Includes an author’s note, photographs, and a glossary.

Robert F Sibert Honor Medal for outstanding nonfiction
Pura Belpre Honor Medal for an outstanding Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth

This book is a great supplement to units on:

  • Civil Rights
  • Martin Luther King Jr. study
  • Discrimination
  • Brown vs. Board of Education
  • Latino Americans
  • Acceptance

With Martin Luther King Jr. Day coming soon, consider this book for a read aloud experience in 3rd – 5th grade!


Diva and Flea

January 4, 2016

Diva and Flea

by Mo Willems

Mo Willems is at it again!  And no, it’s not an Elephant and Piggie book!

His latest book, The Story of Diva and Flea, is a chapter book illustrated by Tony DiTerlizzi.  As I read it I kept thinking how it is a great book to read aloud to kiddos to teach or reinforce the growth mindset!

Diva is a fancy little dog who lives in a fancy apartment in Paris, France.  Flea is a stray cat who goes wandering throughout the city on his daily adventures.  The two meet in Diva’s courtyard and they both teach the other something great about their lifestyle and each has to act “brave” while trying new things they never though were possible.

Needing to teach grit? Growth mindset? Just want a great read aloud?  Check this book out!

Good for all ages! Grades 1-5, could even be used in Kindergarten!


I Really Like Slop!

December 9, 2015

I Really Like Slop!

(an Elephant and Piggie Book)

by Mo Willems

Book Trailer by Mo Willems

 

Another great addition to the Elephant and Piggie series.  This one really makes you think about how we are all different but how we must still respect one another’s differences.