Tuesday, July 29, 2014

GUEST BLOGGER! Book Smiles by Lesley Burnap

Ball. That word brings so much joy to my dog, a small, leggy Chihuahua mix. Morning. Noon. Night. I am required to throw the round, bouncy toy until my arm is ready to break off. Inside or outside, it doesn't matter, she just loves the chase!

Ball, the nearly wordless picture book by Mary Sullivan, gets my vote for a #booksmiles post. Just take a look at its cover to catch a glimpse of the dog’s enthusiasm for the ball. Take off the dust jacket and underneath you’ll get a visual treat! (I won’t spoil it for you here!) Open the book and you are greeted by simple, uncluttered line drawings depicting just one day in this dog’s life. The range of emotions exhibited by the dog will elicit squeals of laughter and get you to keep turning the page to discover what happens next!
Ball. This clever book takes just one word and shares a special story that young and old will enjoy! Just be sure to include your favorite fur-ball when reading Ball! Well, I’d love to stay longer but my ball-tossing skills are suddenly needed!

(Want to know more about the process to make this 2014 Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor Book? Check out this interview with Mary Sullivan on KidLit TV: http://tinyurl.com/ojx7rtx)


Mia said I had to choose this book. It’s her favorite.
Lesley Burnap (@auntierez)

(Thanks for posting for me, Ann!)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Book Smiles 5

Four days late isn't too late to post for #booksmiles, right?  In my defense, I was traveling out of state and didn't have strong wifi... and no I was NOT shaking uncontrollably and in the fetal position due to lack of internet service so don't even think that.  I thumb my nose at that silly connectivity.

The following book totally made me smile!  I learned about it from my friend Carolanne @RobeyLMC and it's on the Young Hoosier book list this year.

A Home for Bird by Philip Stead:

Vernon, the toad, finds a Bird and makes it his friend. He spends the entire book trying to help Bird find its home.  In the end, you will definitely be smiling as you discover where Bird belongs!  

Check it out!

And join us for #booksmiles!  Write about a book that makes you smile and post it to Twitter using the #booksmiles hashtag.  Happy reading!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Books Make Me Smile 4

Last week I found yet another book that made me smile.  Shocking, I know.

Well, technically, it didn't MAKE me smile.  I chose to smile.  I choose to be smiling now, even though I am completely late with my #booksmiles post!  Yay me for being on time!  Ha!

Last week, I was camping out at Kids Ink bookstore in Indianapolis.  It's the cutest little indie with lots of knowledgeable staff.  I like to plop myself down on the comfy chairs and read through all the new stuff.  I came across this book:

Froodle is an adorable and hilarious book about Little Brown Bird who dared to wonder what else she could say instead of "peep."  She was tired of singing the same old song.  Throughout the text, and mixed in with laugh out loud speech bubbles, all the birds of the neighborhood try to come to terms with Little Brown Bird's new song.

Froodle reminds me a lot of Peter Brown's Mr. Tiger Goes Wild or Mo Willems' Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed.  I would almost put it in a book basket titled something like "Characters Breaking Stereotypes."  I think I might just do that.

Anyway, pick up Froodle by Antoinette Portis.  It will bring a #smile to your face!

Are there books that make you smile?  Join us!  Post about the happy book and use the hashtag #booksmiles on Twitter!  Happy reading!

P.S. #nErDcampMI rules!
P.S.S. I can't wait to read the #booksmiles post from #jasontes5th!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

An Intellectual Hangover

So what happens when you take nerdy, passionate teachers from around the country, stick them in one place, and let them talk for two days?

You have nErDcampMI.

Nerds being nerds.

You also might be left with an intellectual hangover by the end.  More on that later.

When I joined Twitter over a year ago, my intention was to tweet classroom events and thinking to students' parents.  I never imagined in a million years that Twitter would lead me to meet people and make actual real-life FRIENDS with other teachers who love reading and writing as much as I do.

It's such an odd phenomenon to become "friends" with someone on the internet and then meet them in real life and realize OMG THIS PERSON IS JUST LIKE ME!  WE ARE BEST FRIENDS!

I cannot even begin to blog about everything I learned in Parma, Michigan those two days.  But I will try to list a few:

1. "Building a classroom library is an act of curation." - Donalyn Miller (Yes!)

2. If you want to teach writing, you need to be a writer yourself. - Jen Vincent (@mentortexts)

3. Google docs can be easily utilized in Reader's Workshop to survey student interests and form small groups. - Franki Sibberson and Gretchen Taylor

4. Comprehension work in 3rd grade could begin with wordless picture books to allow all students access to text. - Franki Sibberson

5. "Lexiles were meant to be tools for librarians.  Not badges for children." - Donalyn Miller (Yessss!)

6. It's never easy to facilitate learning in front of a large audience, but it's easier when you have a trusty sidekick like Lesley Burnap on your side.

My sidekick, @auntierez.

7. The nerdybookclub crew is just as kind and awesome in real life as they are on the internet.

8. The NerdRun/Walk is fun, even if you are 14 minutes late and dying of heatstroke. 

Heatstroke at the 5K with @RobeyLMC.

9. If you come to nErDcampMI, YOU WILL MEET AUTHORS!  Real-life authors!

L to R: Jess Keating, (author of HOW TO OUTRUN A CROCODILE WHEN YOUR SHOES ARE UNTIED), me, Colby Sharp

Liesl Shurtliff, author of RUMP.  I stalked her in the lunch line.

10. You will learn so much and meet so many wonderful people, that you may feel like you have an intellectual hangover when you leave.  Wonderful and exhausted.

And finally...
11. Watch out for participants from Massachusetts like these two.  They look innocent, and are very smart, but they will get under your skin and make you miss them when they are gone!  

Massachusetts friends @auntierez and @jasontes5th

Thank you so much to everyone who made nErDcampMI possible this year.  I know it was so much work, and the freebies are absolutely amazing.

Free swag

So join us next year!  July 6-7 in Parma, Michigan.  Nerdies unite!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Books Make Me Smile 3

In honor of this book's first birthday on June 27, here is a big smile and a HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the Crayons we know and love!

Happy birthday, Crayons!

Green Crayon has a beard and glasses?

Why do the Crayons make me smile?

1. You guys are hysterical and slightly irritating.  I mean, really, you kinda act like little trainwrecks sometimes and I can't look away.
2. Your disputatious and slightly whiny personalities remind me of some children (and adults) I know and love!
3. You always replied to our tweets this year when we would ask you questions about your thinking and your lives!
4. Your Author Father visited us this spring and brought you guys with him!  It was so much fun to meet you guys in person!  That definitely made us smile.

And finally...

5. Pink is a boy crayon! Pink rocks!  
Huge smile!

Are there books that are making your nerdy heart smile?  Join us in posting about them, using the hashtag #booksmiles on Twitter!

Happy Reading!