November 28, 2016
By Mary Molly Shea
and Eleanor Snyder
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.
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:
- Innovators and Inventions
- Nonfiction Text Features
- Main Idea
- Determining Importance
April 6, 2016
Mama Built a Little Nest
by Jennifer Ward, illustrated by Steve Jenkins
Book Blurb from catalog: Illustrations and simple, rhyming text introduce different kinds of birds’ nests, from the scrapes falcons build on high, craggy ledges to the underground nests burrowing owls dig. Includes brief facts about each kind of bird.
Wondering how to change a research report into a poetry unit? Try using this book as your guide! Have students do their typical animal research, writing a wonderful descriptive paragraph. Then challenge your students to use the information that they learned to write a rhyming couplet or ABAB poem. This project might be a good one for your early-finishers or those that love creative writing.
Or use this book in a more traditional sense to compare and contrast the nests created by different animals. This book would be a great mentor text for young students just learning how to use a Venn Diagram.
March 16, 2016
Glow: Animals with Their Own Night Lights
by W. H. Beck
Blurb from the catalog: The author joins world-renowned photographers and biologists to present a collection of images and information about animals who have the unique ability to glow, scientifically known as bioluminescence.
Set on all-black pages, these bioluminescent animals really stand out (though that is possibly because the photographer used flash). Through the book, students are taught the word bioluminescence by repeating the meaning of the word and showing examples. Bioluminescence is used by animals in different ways: to hunt, to attract, to trick, to lose an enemy, etc.
When read with just the larger font, the story moves quickly and is easier to read. Each page also has a smaller font explaining and giving an example of how the bioluminescence is used by the creature.
A great text for student independent reading as well as for a teacher to read aloud.
March 14, 2016
A Boy and a Jaguar
by Alan Rabinowitz
Book blurb from the catalog: Presents a picture book featuring the true story of Alan Rabinowitz, who loved the animals at the zoo and hated that they were kept in cages. Wanting to speak out, Alan found he couldn’t keep himself from stuttering, except when talking to animals–a fact he used to his advantage in championing animal rights.
This book would be great to help teach:
- Empathy (understanding Alan’s stuttering)
- Building Classroom Community (how do we treat others who are different than ourselves)
- Biographies (and even a unit on writing autobiographies — picking out a watermelon seed moment instead of one’s entire life)
- Setting goals (Alan says that if he ever gets “his voice” he will speak for the animals, who cannot speak for themselves. This is a lofty goal for a stutterer, but once he does get his voice he follows through with his promise.)
- Research famous people who stutter
This book has a website!