Counting on Katherine

September 10, 2018

Counting on Catherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13
by Helaine Becker

Click for more information on this title

Blurb: From Katherine‘s early beginnings as a gifted student to her heroic accomplishments as a prominent mathematician at NASA, this is the story of an American icon who not only calculated the course of moon landings but, in turn, saved lives.

Want to make a case about precise computing? Read an excerpt of this book to your students about the importance of Katherine’s math being precise or people would die in space!

This harrowing biography of how Katherine Johnson, an unsung hero, helped the Americans in the Space Race shows just how important minorities were to the effort.

My favorite quote, from Katherine Johnson herself, comes from the back papers: “Despite her many achievements, Katherine never liked to take any credit.  Her reason? ‘Because we always work as a team,’ she says. ‘ it was never just one person.'”

This book is for:

  • space enthusiasts
  • mathematicians
  • biographies highlighting otherwise unsung people of history
  • February — Black History month
  • Women’s History month
  • Context Clues: use the page about “all of the computers were women” to have students figure out what the author means by “computers” (people, not machines)
  • goal setting
  • reaching one’s potential, despite setbacks

Check it out at your local library! ISBN 9781250137524

Advertisements

The Girl Who Ran

September 11, 2017

The Girl Who Ran: Bobbi Gibb, The First Woman to Run the Boston  Marathon
by Frances Poletti and Kristina Yee
Illustrated by Susanna Chapman

Image result for the girl who ran bobbi gibb

Do you want a book about NEVER GIVING UP?  This is for you!  Bobbi Gibb is a girl in the 1960s.  All she wants to do is run.  But others try to stop her, her father even says “Girls don’t run!”  That doesn’t stop Bobbi.  For her first race, she disguises herself as a boy, wearing boy tennis shoes and covering her hair with a hooded sweatshirt.  Midway through the race, she had been spotted and the men running the race replied “We won’t let anyone throw you out; it’s a free road.”  So Bobbi took off her sweatshirt and finished the race!

An inspiring biography of one person who wanted to change the world, who wanted to follow her heart.

Use this at the beginning of the school year as you build community and discuss hopes and dreams!  Bobbi Gibb will definitely inspire your students to never give up and to follow their dreams!


We Found a Hat

October 18, 2016

by Jon Klassen

Image result for we found a hat jon klassen

Two turtles. One Hat. They found it together. So who should get it?

Great story about friendship, empathy, and sharing. What do you do if two people find one object? Who gets it? Is it right to go get it yourself if the other person is not watching?

Teach right and wrong with this great story!


Last Stop on Market Street

May 4, 2016

Last Stop on Market Street

by Matt de la Peña
pictures by Christian Robinson

Book Blurb: A young boy rides the bus across town with his grandmother and learns to appreciate the beauty in everyday things.

Award Alert–This book got THREE!

  • 2016 Newbery Medal (for the words)
  • 2016 Caldecott Honor (for the pictures pictures)
  • 2016 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor (given to an African American illustrator)

Needing to teach the life skill of helping others?  This is the book for you.

Needing to get students thinking about being selfless?  This is the book for you.

Just need a book that will get kids thinking?  This is the book for you!


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

I Wish You More

April 6, 2016

I Wish You More

by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld

Click for more information on this title

This is a great encouragement book if you notice your students are struggling with too much on their plates.  In simple text, Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld wish their readers more happiness than sadness, more good times than bad.

Sample from the text:
I wish you more ups than downs.
I wish you more hugs than ughs.
I wish you more Woo-Hoo! than WHOA!

Reading this blurb from Tom Lichtenheld’s blog just made me love him more than I already did!
“When Amy and I work together, it’s impossible (and pointless) to distinguish Artist from Writer. We both come up with words and we both come up with visuals, so a book gets the full benefit of whatever talent we can collectively muster up. This is why our book covers never use designations such as “written by” or “illustrated by.””

For this reason, this book might be a good book to use to discuss collaboration and working together. Share Lichtenheld’s blog post on NerdyBookClub’s blog (linked here)

I Wish You More Activity Kit

Amy Krouse Rosenthal Author Website

Tom Lichtenheld Website


Stick and Stone

March 17, 2016

Stick and Stone
by Beth Ferry; illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld

Click for more information on this title

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)