Monday, February 29, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading.  For more information check out the host blogs: Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers.

What I Read This Week…


Normal Norman by Tara Lazar

A young scientist is trying to demonstrate the meaning of "normal" with the help of an orangutan named Norman who she thinks is just regular and ordinary.  Norman, who eats pizza, sleeps in a bunk bed, and has his own stuffed anteater, proves to be anything but normal.  The book shows a meaningful lesson - there is no definition of "normal."
 

Otto the Owl Who Loved Poetry by Vern Kousky

Otto the Owl loves poetry, but the other owls think this is unusual and tease him.  Otto stays true to who he is, makes a friend, and helps others learn to appreciate poetry as well.  The lines of poetry Otto recites are from well-known poems and the poets, including T.S. Eliot and Emily Dickinson, are listed at the end of the book.  This picture book could be used to introduce young readers to poetry.

Too Many Carrots by Katy Hudson

This is a picture book about sharing.  Rabbit loves carrots so much that he no longer has room in his burrow.  His friends try their best to help him find a place to sleep, but their generosity always ends in a disaster.  Rabbit's solution to the problem is sweet and illustrates a lesson about friendship.  The detailed illustrations of Rabbit and his overabundance of carrots are cute and humorous.

The Great Pet Escape (Pets on the Loose!) by Victoria Jamieson

This is a humorous graphic novel about class pets trying to escape.  George Washington is a hamster who invents a contraption to escape from his prison, the cage in the second grade classroom where he lives.  He sets his two friends free, but an evil mouse and his minions interfere with the plan.  As the plot unfolds there is lots of action and humor.  The book is a short, quick read and I think it will be another graphic novel that flies off the shelves.

Fenway and Hattie by Victoria Coe

This story is told from the perspective of Fenway, the Jack Russell Terrier who belongs to Hattie. When the family moves out of the city and Hattie finds a neighborhood friend, Fenway is left feeling alone and disappointed.  Fenway is determined to get his friend back.  The author has provided an imaginative and sweet look at a dog's thoughts and feelings.  This is a book I'm looking forward to sharing with my middle grade readers.  

Monday, February 8, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading.  For more information check out the host blogs: Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers.

What I Read This Week…



Love Monster and the Last Chocolate by Rachel Bright

This is a cute picture book about sharing and thinking of others.  Love Monster knows he should share his chocolates with his friends, but does not want to risk that someone will eat his favorite - the double chocolate strawberry swirl.  When Love Monster is about to open the box and have the chocolates all for himself he gets a "queasy-squeezy feeling in his heart" which changes everything. My students enjoyed the first book about Love Monster and think he is just the cutest.  I think they will enjoy this one just as much, if not more.  

Bunny vs. Monkey by Jamie Smart

In this graphic text, scientists attempt to send Monkey into space, but instead he ends up in Bunny's peaceful forest.  Monkey decides to take over the woods, but there is a gang of forest friends who are determined to defend their home.  The battles between the evil Monkey and the other animals involve silly, often ridiculous, antics that many young readers will find hilarious.  Each page of the text is filled with detailed, bright illustrations.  Although I don't love the plot of this book, I think many readers will and it will be a frequently-borrowed book in my graphic novel collection.

Pax by Sara Pennypacker

This chapter book for middle grade readers is one that will pull at your heart strings.  It is about friendship, loyalty, and learning to survive and to let go.  Peter must return his pet fox, Pax, to the wild and move in with his grandfather when his father joins the army.  Soon after being separated, both the boy and his fox begin a search to find each other.  The chapters alternate between telling Peter's story as he runs away from his grandfather's and Pax's story as he discovers the wild.  The impact of war is an issue that runs throughout the book.  The story illustrates the heartwarming bond that can exist between humans and animals.