Monday, July 28, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It has been a while since I've done a #IMWAYR post. It's not because I haven't been reading, I just have lost track of days this summer. This meme was started by Sheila at Book Journey. The kid's version was started by Jen at Teach Mentor Text and Kellee at Unleashing Readers.

I can't believe that my summer is quickly coming to an end. It is almost the end of July and I'm wondering where the month went! Soon I will be starting that balancing act of teaching and trying to keep up with my reading.

The hard part of this post is trying to decide what to share. I've been reading quite a few chapter books lately. I've had a stack of them sitting on a table and I'm finally making my way through them. In between I've been reading some picture books which you can see in my Book Smiles posts below.

18085456The first chapter book I want to share is Jinx's Magic by Sage Blackwood. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. I was excited to read this book, since I loved Jinx so much!  In Jinx Sage Blackwood really created characters that I grew to care about and that continues in Jinx's Magic. I can't wait to share both of these books with my students next year. I know many of them enjoy fantasy, so I'm hoping this will only add to their enjoyment. If you don't, make sure you follow Sage Blackwood on Twitter (@urwalder).

20578900Thanks to NetGalley I was able to read Star Wars: Jedi Academy: Return of Padawan by Jeff Brown. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. This is the second book in the Jedi Academy series. I loved this book, it is just a fun read. The hardest part for me is the names, but in my head I make up something that sounds right and move on. I just love how Brown takes what is going on in the middle grade world today, but puts it in Star Wars world and terminology. This is going to be a hit with my students, just like the first one was. This book will be published tomorrow, July 29th.

20578902On Saturday, once again thanks to NetGalley, I had the opportunity to read the first book in Cynthia Lord's newest early chapter book series Shelter Pet Squad. This first book is all about Jellybean, a guinea pig. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. This is such a great early chapter book! I know that many of my 2nd grade students love animals, but are not ready for some of the older chapter books with animals in them. I really liked that this isn't the typical pet story, but instead highlighted Pet Shelters. At the end of the book there were directions on how to create the dog treats mentioned in the book and ways to help out the animals at the Pet Shelters.

20578979The other book that I've read, thanks to NetGalley, which my kids have been waiting for is Amulet #6: Escape From Lucien by Kazu Kibuish. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. Besides Diary of a Wimpy Kid, the Amulet series is the most read series in my library. Emily and Navin have been two favorite characters of my students. In this book they are continuing their battle against the Elf King. There is so much action and adventure that happens in this book I know it will be a favorite of my students. When I was talking books with my 5th graders, they were crushed to learn that this installment wouldn't be published until August 26th, when they are in middle school and no longer with me. Before then end of school last year, I started a hold list with my fourth graders and I know it will only continue to grow!

What great things have you been reading? Look for a Book Smiles post later on this week.

Happy Reading!!

Stacey (@libraryjo92) 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Book Smiles!!

smile bookMy #booksmiles book this week is one that I spotted and then had to grab off the new book shelf in my public library. The cover immediately drew me in and I had to find out what the book was all about. The book is Pardon Me by Daniel Miyares. Click here for a summary on Goodreads

18689751All the main character (the bird) wants is to enjoy the nice little spot that he found to sleep. But he keeps being joined by so many other animals. It reminds me of The Mitten, and The Hat. The ending though, made me laugh out loud! Not going to spoil it for anyone, so you can have the same laughter and #booksmiles that I had!! This is one book that is definitely going on my next order for my library. My kids are going to LOVE this book!

Pardon Me is Daniel Miyares' first book as author and illustrator. You can visit his website at Can't wait to see his next book!

What book made you smile this week?

Happy Reading!

Stacey (@libraryjo92)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Two Chapter Books You Must Read!

Even though I haven't been posting a lot, I have been doing a lot of reading! I've been reading picture books, chapter books, some nonfiction books, and a lot of books off MD Black-Eyed Susan Award nominee list. I do have to get better about reading more nonfiction. If you have any suggestions of some great nonfiction books please post them in the comments or tweet me.

I'm going to recommend two really great chapter books that I think everyone should read if you haven't already. I know a lot of people on Twitter have read these because they been tweeting about them. The two books that I'm talking about are This Journal Belongs To Ratchet and the soon-to-be published Always, Abigail by Nancy J. Cavanaugh. Click here for a summary of This Journal Belongs To Ratchet on Goodreads. Click here for a summary of Always, Abigail on Goodreads. I was able to read Always, Abigail from a copy I obtained on NetGalley.

15942671Wow is the word that came to mind when I finished both of these books. The other thing that happened is I wanted to start them over and read them again right away. Both of these books are great fifth-grade and middle school books. Nancy has truly captured what it's like to be a middle school girl. The characters are very easy to relate to and believable. To me a sign of a good book is when I can find parts of myself in a character and in This Journal Belongs To Ratchet I could totally identify with Ratchet's awkwardness. When I think back to middle school awkward is a great way to describe me and that time period. I also wrote about this book on my Summer Update for my Must Reads in 2014.

18509629In Always, Abigail the character that I found myself relating to the most was not the main character Abigail, but Gabby who played a big role in the story. Once middle school hit I became the girl that everybody made fun of. It was a hard time in my life, but it shaped me to be the person that I am today. As I read this book it made me truly wish that I had a friend like Abigail to get me through that isolating time in my life. 

If you've not read This Journal Belongs To Ratchet I highly suggest you get a copy and read it. I'm thrilled that this book is on our fourth through sixth grade list for the Maryland Black-Eyed Susan Award. I think it's one that everyone, boy or girl, should read. Always Abigail is due to be published on August 5th. I highly suggest that when you can order this book you do so and read it because it is such a wonderful powerful book. It is also another that boys and girls should read.

If you can't tell, these books really made an impression on me and I'm really passionate about everyone reading them. What book(s) have you read that has brought out that passion in you?

Also, don't forget about suggesting some great nonfiction books to me! 

Happy Reading!!

Stacey (@libraryjo92)

Friday, July 18, 2014

Book Smiles!!

smile book
I read my book early in the week, but I was suffering from an allergic reaction to some medication. So I was not doing a lot because the Benadryl I was taking. But now my head is clear and I can think again.


My #booksmiles for this week is Clumsy Duck by Britta Teckentrup. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. She has also written two other books that I love: Grumpy Cat and Big Smelly Bear

This book was such a fun read because like Duck I'm a little clumsy, so I identified with the character. When I was younger it was suggested that ballet might not be the activity for me since I was dancing into walls and couldn't keep my balance. This book was also a great reminder that we all need to be cheerleaders to help the kids find how they can be successful. 

And how can you not smile when you look at the cover of this book.

What book made you smile this week?

Happy Reading!!

Stacey (@libraryjo92)

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Book Smiles!!

smile bookCan't believe another week has passed and it's time for another #booksmiles post! The summer is going by way too fast!!

My #booksmiles this week is a favorite of mine. I was talking about with a friend, who is looking for some books to read aloud to her son. He loves robots, so Ame Dyckman's Boy + Bot immediately came to mind. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. This is one of my favorites. It's a great story about friendship and acceptance of each others differences. The trailer is also a favorite of mine. I always show it to my Kindergartners and First Graders for summer reading ideas. If I'm talking about Ame's books I have to mention Tea Party Rules. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. This one is just a fun book. I loved watching Cub trying to follow all the Tea Party rules. This will be a popular book in my library next year. I can't look at Ame's newest book, Wolfie The Bunny without smiling. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. I can't wait to a hold of this book! It will be a long wait until February 2015. For now I can just look at the title and cover and smile! 

BookBox: embed book widget, share book list

I also had #bookfriendsmile moment this week. On Monday and Tuesday in Michigan #nErDcampMI was held. My partners in #booksmiles, Niki and Ann both were in attendance. I lived vicariously through their tweets and many other peoples tweets. But they let me know they were thinking of me. This picture just made my day! I was having a bad day and the picture really turned it around. Hopefully one day it will be a picture of the three of us! If you don't already follow Niki (@daydreamreader) and Ann (@KingandKids) on Twitter you really should!

When I first joined Twitter I didn't know what to expect. It was the great unknown. I thought that I might get some new ideas for my library and my lessons. I never expected to form friendships with people I have never met face to face. Twitter has been one of the best Professional Development activities that I have participated in. I'm so happy that I had to join because of a technology class I was taking.

What book or moment made you smile this week?

Happy Reading!!

Stacey (@libraryjo92)

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Book Smiles!!

smile book

Book Smiles!!

I've been smiling a lot this week, because I've been able to read a lot more this week. I can't believe that we are already into July! This summer is flying by! I need to get motivated to get some of my plans done before summer is over!


Hope everybody has had some great books that made them smile. My book this week that made me smile was Arlo Rolled by Susan Pearson. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. This book was a lot of fun. Arlo does not want to be eaten, he wants to see the world. So he starts to roll so that he can explore the world around him. This book reminded me of a Gingerbread Man story. Loved the ending!

What book has made you smile? Post in the comments and/or if you are on Twitter post with the hashtag #booksmiles.

Happy Reading!!

Stacey (@libraryjo92)

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Must Read in 2014-Summer Update

Wow! I can't believe it is already time to do the summer update for my Must Read in 2014 list. I'm just in shock that it is already July! June went by so fast!

Well in January I started my list with 18 books and at the update in April I had read 9 of the books off of that list. In the April update I also added another 12, to bring my total up to 30.  Looking back over the whole list, I'm feeling pretty good because I have read 15 of the books!

Below are a few of the highlights of the 15 that I've read.

I just loved Duke by Kirby Larson. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. In fact, I haven't found a Kirby Larson book that I haven't fallen in love with. This is going to be a great book to add to my library next year. 


Another great book from my list was The Pigeon Needs a Bath by Mo Willems. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. I never get tired of the pigeon books. I love each and every one! And I love sharing them with the kids. I made sure to have multiple copies of this book for the kids next year.


I really enjoyed Peanut Butter and Jellyfish by Jarrett J. Krosoczka. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. I fell in love with this book while showing the book trailer to my Kindergarten and First Grade students. 


A book that wasn't on my Must Read in 2014 list, but is a wonderful read, is This Journal Belongs to Ratchet by Nancy J. Cavanaugh. Click here for a summary on Goodreads. This book just wowed me! Once I started reading it, I couldn't stop until I finished. I could really identify with the main character Ratchet (Rachel). Like her, I always felt (and sometimes still do) like I was on the outside looking in when it came to friends and fitting in. If you haven't read this one, I highly suggest that you pick it up.


Happy Reading!! 
How have you been doing on your Must Read in 2014 list?

Stacey (@libraryjo92)