What James Said

February 22, 2018

Image result for what james saidRemember the telephone game? One person whispers to another, who shares it with someone else until it circles back to the owner. The final message is never like the beginning statement. Although you laugh at the ridiculous outcome, it’s not a laughing matter when rumors are spread about you.

In this story’s documentary, a friend’s compliment gets twisted into something hurtful. What James Said provides the opportunity for discussion regarding peaceful resolutions. And, who do you believe – a friend or a stranger? Watch this preview as a class and predict if they will become friends.

The read the book or view the story on YouTube.

Savorings for What James Said:

  • Grabber lead
  • Character traits
  • Varied sentences
  • Transitions in a day
  • Tension
  • Prediction
  • Conflict between friends
  • Restorative practice

(PES library book)

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I Need My Monster/ Hey, That’s My Monster!

February 18, 2018

Amanda Noll has created two awesome fun reads. In I Need My Monster, Ethan wonders how he will sleep without his monster. Substitute monsters arrive, but they don’t have all of the traits that Gabe, his monster, has. Hey, That’s My Monster, Ethan has a bigger dilemma – his sister won’t go to sleep and his monster plans to camp out in her room. Emma doesn’t seem to be rattled by the visiting monsters. She giggles. She plays. She is not sleeping. Howard McWilliam brings the monsters to life in a fun, not scary, delightful tale of childhood bedtimes.

View the book trailer:

Storyline graciously reads both books. Click on the title to show your students. I Need My Monster. Hey, That’s My Monster.

Savorings for both books:

  • Kid perspective
  • Vivid verbs
  • Power of 3
  • Story tension
  • Siblings
  • Every day happening

Cara’s Kindness

February 17, 2018

Pay it forward. In a time when turmoil and fear encircle us, we can choose to break the mold by helping others. Cara’s Kindness is a story of one character putting aside her problem to help another. In turn, the pay it forward then goes from one friend to another character. View a snippet of the book on this link. Kids of all ages can begin to think of ways to help others around them. Start in your classroom. Encourage it at home. How can they help the community?

The story also features a growth mindset.

“Well of course! That’s part of skating {or any part of life}. So the first think you need to learn is how to get back up.”

Kristi Yamaguchi shares her book at this link. She also has a website, Always Dream Foundation, that focuses on supporting early literacy and paying it forward to children in need.

Savorings for Cara’s Kindness:

  • Growth Mindset
  • Repeating line – “No worries…just pass on the kindness!
  • Alliteration – gracefully glided, character names
  • Theme – Caring makes a difference!
  • Small Moments in Time
  • Every day happenings

Nerdy Birdy Tweets

February 16, 2018

FullSizeRender (3)Two friends: Nerdy Birdy and Vulture. They are different, but they are real friends. A must-have book for my library!

Aaron Reynolds creates a delightful banter between two friends in Nerdy Birdy Tweets. Nerdy Birdy loves his video games and his new tweeter friends. Absorbed in the online media, he forgets his friend, Vulture. A story of learning to balance social media with relationships.

Check out video clips of books and interviews of Aaron Reynolds. View some of the illustrations by Matt Davies and tweets between Reynolds and Davies regarding their new book.

Savorings for Nerdy Birdy Tweets:

  • Character Traits – compare/contrast
  • Digital Citizenship
  • Perspective
  • Play on words
  • Restorative Practice
  • Friendship

The Quickest Kid in Clarksville

February 15, 2018

Kids connect with history through story. Historical narrative invites the reader into the time period, the setting, the dialect. Our students can relate to characters and feel the emotions of the events. Picture books give readers a weighted historical highlight to peak their interest. For a moment, we can be transported back in time and watch the movie unfold before our eyes.

The Quickest Kid in Clarksville ,by Pat Zietlow Miller, begins as an ordinary happening – a girl playing outside with her friends, racing to see who is the fastest. More than anything, the character emulates her hero, Wilma Rudolph, the fastest woman in 1960 and the first woman to win 3 gold medals in the same Olympic Games. Along comes Charmaine, with her “brand-new, only-been-worn-by-her shoes” challenging Alta’s stand as the fastest kid in Clarksville, TN. They race. She trips. Words fly.

In story, the girls have a conflict. Because of their hero’s example and forgiveness, their differences are put aside and a friendship begins. Not only did they want to imitate Wilma’s running abilities, they also wanted to imitate the peace she was inviting.

The author’s note highlights Wilma Rudolph, from a family of twenty-two children , ill as a child and wore a leg brace, and had the first major integrated event in her home town of Clarksville, TN.

Companion book: Wilma Unlimited .  Click on this link to view the book read to you.

Savorings for The Quickest Kid in Clarksville:

  • Dialect – “Boy – howdy, does she ever.
  • Varied sentences (two word sentences for emphasis)
  • Hyphenated words as craft – “shoe-buying daddy”
  • Character emotions
  • Possessive nouns – several examples of using the apostrophe s (Charmaine’s strutting)
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Author’s Note

All My Friends Are Planets: The Story of Pluto

February 13, 2018

by Alisha Vimawala

Growing up, I learned about the nine planets in our solar system. Pluto was the farthest. In 2006, new discoveries changed this notion.

As you read All My Friends Are Planets, you are engaged in a conversations with Pluto. It explains how it changed from being a planet in the solar system to the classification of a dwarf planet in the Kuiper Belt. It feels alone, describing the other planets in the solar system. It is

I’m not a scientist at heart, but I love the wonderment of space. This lighthearted conversation explains the differences of Pluto for children to understand. It’s a great springboard into further research. The author nudges her readers to investigate more on the subject and lists possible sites to begin in the back of the book. Alisha Vimawala also has a drawing contest of a future planet. Genius!

Savorings for All My Friends are Planets:

  • First Person Narrative – talks to the reader
  • Informational Narrative
  • Scientific Characteristics – same/ different
  • Personification
  • Voice
  • Power of 3

Scholastic book order


Follow on Instagram

February 13, 2018

Hello everyone,

I have begun an Instagram account, Booksavors, to introduce mentor texts as well as my blog. My book stack continues to gather more delightful books, and I don’t always find the time to cultivate lots of craft moves for each book. Some books are just awesome read alouds. Instagram allows me to snap a quick picture and highlight what catches my attention.

Hope you choose to follow both media sites and savor the books you love.