August 27, 2011
Ivan the Terrier is a unique mix of story within a story. The narrator, Peter Catalanotte, is reading a fairy tale to the reader when all of a sudden, Ivan interrupts the script. His barking startles the story characters while the narrator is trying to control his dog.
You students will have fun predicting what mischief will happen next. Ivan is full of energy, running from one scene to the next. The text is hilarious.
Savorings for reading and in writing for Ivan the Terrier:
- Font Manipulation – creates the sounds of the dog
- Voice – “My word. I’ve never seen anything like this,”
- Surprise Ending
August 23, 2011
School has begun. The first day of school I spent some time helping in a kindergarten class. The students were putting their supplies and beginning a coloring paper at the table. One little boy kept getting out of his seat and walking around. On Back to School Night, he had introduced himself to his teacher. “I Dominick. I 5. I run” and proceeded to run around the class.
After thirty minutes into class, the teacher had the children on the carpet, reading a story. Little Dom got up, tapped his teacher on the shoulder, and pronounced, “I done. You take me home now.”
I stifled a laugh.
After sharing the story with my senior son, he said, “He’s got a loooong educational career ahead of him.”
August 22, 2011
The Bookshop Dog intrigues me. I found the book at a used bookstore. It’s not new (copyright 1996), but new to me. Cynthia Rylant is not only the author but also the illustrator. As I read the book, I kept wondering where she got the idea for the book. A dog-lover will relate to this book.
A young lady takes her dog everywhere, even to work. She owned a bookstore and name it after her dog, Martha Jane’s bookshop. Her customers loved the dog and business was flourishing.
A dilemma arises when the lady has to go to the hospital. Several customers wanted to keep Martha. It was Martha who chose her handler – one man who visited the bookshop weekly. I think this book is a great example of how a decision creates the problem in the story.
Savorings for reading and in writing for The Bookshop Dog:
- Play on words
- Magic of 3 – postman, policeman, band director
- Problem/ Solution
- Character traits
August 19, 2011
Marni McGee theme in Winston the Book Wolf is the love of reading. Winston the Wolf feeds on words. He loved eating books. When banned from the library, Rosie(with a familiar looking red-hooded sweatshirt) came to his rescue. She asks why he eats books.
“Words are so delicious!”
Ian Beck interweaves characters from familiar fairy tale stories – the Three Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood – throughout the setting. Winston transforms into Granny, the Story Lady, who reads at the library. What a great way to start the school year, inviting kids into the world of reading.
Savorings for reading and in writing for Winston the Book Wolf:
- Spin on a familiar story
- Problem/ Solution
- Character emotion
- Magic of 3
August 17, 2011
Dirk Yeller is a cowboy with itches in his britches! People are nervous around him. When Dirk asks for help, no one seems to have the solution … except for Sam. Sam is curious and begins following Dirk everywhere. He seems to understand Dirk’s energy and shows him to his quiet place – the library.
The Day Dirk Yeller Came to Town by Mary Casanova shares the importance of the library and how reading can capture a variety of interests. Ard Hoyt adds more to the story on the end papers. In the front, you will see the wanted poster, including Dirk’s profile. In back, the newspaper announces Dirk and the librarian wed. What a change reading had on this character!
“And ever since, the library has become the busiest place in town, especially for folks curious, restless minds – like Dirk Yeller and me.”
Savorings for reading and in writing for The Day Dirk Yeller Came to Town:
- Magic of 3
- Similes – “sweet as pecan pie“
- Apostrophe – ‘cuz, shootin’
Warsaw Community Public Library new book
August 15, 2011
This book is creative and fun. As the school year begins, you want to engage your students through read alouds, enticing them to revel in the joy of reading. Charlie Cook’s Favorite Book by Julia Donaldson will grab the daydreaming child’s attention and show him a creative way to read. The reading and writing connection is linked through this storytelling text.
The end papers display a bookshelf with books, which foreshadow the events in the story. Each two page layout links one scene to the next. As Charlie begins to read those books, the reader views the illustrations through Charlie’s eyes. One story leads to another, which leads to another, and eventually circles back to Charlie reading a book. Fun! I think your boys will find this book interesting and funny.
Set in a poetic, rhythmic rhyme, the reader is carried away on an adventure in every scene. The humor sprinkled throughout will delight all our listeners.
Savorings for reading and in writing for Charlie Cook’s Favorite Book:
- Circular ending
- Love of Reading – it’ an adventure!
August 12, 2011
Denys Cazet pens an adorable narrative that will capture an book lover’s heart. Hamlet, the pig, loves to read and write. With a notebook in hand, Hamlet notices his surroundings and writes. His sensory description captures the beauty of the moment. His sentiment for literature is not shared by his family, though. As Hamlet consistently asks, “Will You Read to Me?‘, his pig parents seem to be interested in other daily activities, such as eating.
Searching for someone to share his poetry with, Hamlet takes to interacting with his reflection. Unbeknown to him, an animal audience listens and asks for more. Surprised, yet pleased, Hamlet obliges.
Savorings for reading and in writing for “Will You Read to Me?”:
- Hybrid text – narrative with poetry inlaid
- Sensory Detail
- Living like a Writer
- Child-like conversation
- Past-tense verbs – shouted, shoved, pushed
- Magic of 3 – “The breeze rattled the cattails, brushed Hamlet’s face, and then it was quiet.”