Monday, September 30, 2013

Foundation of Good Writing

Long before I ever thought about writing, I was a listener. We're not taught listening — that's something that you learn by doing. 
-Patricia McKissack

Vintage book plate design by Louis Rhead (1857–1926).
Illustrated by Louis Rhead

Friday, September 27, 2013

PPBF: Up, Up and Away

Today's pick
Up, Up and Away
Words and pictures by Ruth Heller

Up, Up and Away
A Book About Adverbs

Written and illustrated by Ruth Heller

Grosset & Dunlap, 1991, Non-fiction, recommended grades K-3, but can be used at higher levels.
Lexile 480, Reading Level 3.1

Language Fun, Educational, Concept

"Adverbs work terrifically
when answering specifically . . .
"How often?'
and 'Where?'

Penguins all dress DECENTLY.
Toe dancers practice FREQUENTLY.
This house was painted RECENTLY . . .and
Small green frogs live THERE."

There are eight titles in the World of Language Series by Ruth Heller. Up, Up and Away teaches the meaning and uses of adverbs through luscious illustrations and rollicking rhymes.  

What I Love:
Ruth Heller's larger-than-life illustrations are colorful and bold, immediately engaging the attention of young readers. Her rhymes are fun to read aloud. Her unique way of introducing children to the mechanics of language makes this book, and the others of its kind, a valuable resource for parents and educators. As I understand it, these books will be of use in teaching CCSS.

1. Try online games with adverbs from EZSchool, Quia, or Study Zone.
2. At you'll find a fun game for acting out adverbs, thanks to Alicia Danyali.
3. Don't forget to watch the Lolly family on Schoolhouse Rock.
4. There are lots of challenging nouns in this book. Use the spreads to expand learning. Why not research egrets, pandas, Gelett Burgess, or Timbuktu, as mentioned in the text?
Read all eight titles in the series covering nouns, verbs,
prepositions, conjunctions, interjections, and adjectives

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday for September 27, 2013.
Thanks to Susanna Leonard Hill.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

IF: Together

 Here are a few ideas I was working on for the Illustration Friday topic, Together.

Copyright Joanne Roberts

Copyright Joanne Roberts

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Dare to Read

“Let us dare to read, think, speak and write.”
-John Adams

Thanks to Letterology
Belgian artist Armand Rels

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Pocket Poet

“You will never be alone with a poet in your pocket.”
-John Adams

ex libris
Bookplate of Rene Hoer Schelmann

Friday, September 20, 2013

PPBF: The Book of Jonah

Perfect Picture Book Friday is back. Here's my first pick of the season.

The Book of Jonah, retold and illustrated by Peter Spier

The Book of Jonah,
Written and illustrated by Peter Spier
Baker Books, 1985, Biblical non-fiction,
ages 4-8

Themes: History, Adventure, Religion

"One day, as Jonah the prophet was going about his everyday work, the Lord God spoke to Him. 'Jonah, I want you to go to the great city of Nineveh with a message from me."

The Book of Jonah follows the original narrative of the Biblical account from the call of Jonah through to the reprimand the prophet receives for his lack of compassion.

What I Love:
Anything by Peter Spier is bound to capture the attention of its readers. His graphic novel layouts tell the story with plenty of action. His illustrations engage the reader with a multitude of details. This edition also includes four pages of back matter, giving readers archaeological information about the Assyrian empire through maps, diagrams, and text.

Lancaster County, PA
1.  Explore the science of aquatic life. Go on a whale watch or tour an aquarium.
2. Explore the history of Mesopotamia through the web or at museums like the Met.
3. Read about modern day Jonahs, like this article in the Rock City Times.
4. Handy with a needle? Dress the part with McCall or Simplicity patterns.
5. Make a clothespin fish from Messy Inspiration.
6. Visit Sight & Sound Theater in Lancaster, PA to witness the stage version of Jonah, or see it  in Branson, MO in 2014.

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday for September 20, 2013.
Thanks to Susanna Leonard Hill.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Arrr! Booty of Pirate Books

Dead men tell no tales, but here there be plenty of buccaneer books to satisfy even the hungriest reader. Capture a few today, before National Talk Like a Pirate Day be over!

Dagger Quick, by Brian Eames
Cover by Amy June Bates

The Pirate's Son, by Geraldine McCaughrean

by Iain Lawrence

Roger the Jolly Pirate
Roger, the Jolly Pirate, by Brett Helquist

Edward and the Pirates
Edward and the Pirates, by David McPhail

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

James Patterson's 2 Newest Treasures

Released 9-16-13
Treasure Hunters,
by James Patterson,
 Chris Grabenstein,
and Juliana Neufeld
The Guardian reports that author James Patterson is set to donate $1 million Indie bookstores in the next year. I don't know if that will spur the public to support local independents, but I applaud this literary superstar for trying.

Libraries are the lifeblood of a thinking people, but publishers cannot live on library sales alone. Bookstores are an indispensable part of our communities. I'll get off my soapbox now if you'll go out and buy a book.

Happy reading!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Fascination with Technology

" all our fascination with technology we've forgotten that a simple book can make a difference.” 
-Roxanne J. Coady