Cutest Animals…That Could KILL YOU!

November 28, 2016

By Mary Molly Shea
and Eleanor Snyder

Cover imageCover imageCover imageCover imageCover imageCover image

Written at a DRA 24 or 28, these animal books are sure to hook your readers!  Each book takes a cute animal and teaches the reader all about it, including “dangerous details.”  Great informative books!  Each book contains with excellent nonfiction text features too–headings, bold words, glossary, table of contents, index, captions, and photographs.



One Day on Our Blue Planet series

November 18, 2016

by Ella Bailey

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

These books would make great read alouds when studying biomes or ecosystems.

…In the Antarctic follows an Adelie penguin through a typical day, including interactions with other penguins and penguin lifestyle, as well as other animals and things in the Antarctic. This book includes awesome endpapers that show labeled illustrations of things found above the ice and below the ice.

…In the Savannah follows a lion cub experiencing life, under the protection of his mother, in the African savannah. This book includes awesome endpapers that show labeled illustrations of animals in the daytime and animals in the nighttime on the African savannah.

These are great jumping off points when talking about either of these biomes or continents!


Toy Trailblazers: Innovators Biographies

April 28, 2016

This is an exciting new biography series for kids interested in Crayola crayons, Barbies, LEGO, and Play-Doh!


The four books from the series that we purchased for the library are:

  • Play-Doh Pioneer: Joseph McVicker
  • LEGO Manufacturers: The Kristiansen Family
  • Barbie Developer: Ruth Handler
  • Crayola Creators: Edward Binney and C. Harrold Smith

These books are not only high interest reads, but can also fit into lessons about:

  • Biographies
  • Timelines
  • Innovators and Inventions
  • Nonfiction Text Features
  • Main Idea
  • Determining Importance


How to Swallow a Pig

March 15, 2016

How to Swallow a Pig
by Steve Jenkins & Robin Page

Step-By-Step Advice from the Animal Kingdom

Click for more information on this title

Want a fun way to spice up your how-to unit?  Want to incorporate research into that writing unit?  Use How to Swallow a Pig as a mentor text next time!

Steve Jenkins and Robin Page write simple how-to instructions, then add details under their topic sentence.

  • For example the first page is “How to Trap Fish Like a Humpback Whale”.
  • Step 1: Find some fish (written in bold).
  • The subtext then reads: The first step is locating a school of fish.  Some of these schools include millions of herring or sardines.
  • Step 2: Tell your friends.
  • The subtext then reads: Call any humpbacks in the area and let them know you’ve located dinner.
  • Step 3: Slap the surface.
  • The subtext then reads: Whacking the water with your tail frightens the fish and makes them swim closer together.  If you don’t have a tail, ask one of the whales for help.

Each situation will definitely intrigue the animal lover!

Use this book to teach:

  • How to units
  • Enhance your animal research units (think about how students can research their animal to create their own how-to page)
  • Topic sentences and supporting details
  • Sequencing