Wednesday, December 19, 2012

New Authors in the Library

I'm so excited! I have authors in my library. My first graders created an animal fact book while the second graders created their own collective biography. I have been trying to find fun ways to integrate Common Core Standards into the library.  I decided that one way to accomplish this was for my students in K – 2 to write their own book (with guidance of course!). This way I could cover a lot of standards with one activity. It took us the entire nine week grading period to collect pages for our book. I fixed a file folder for each student to keep their work organized.  I quickly figured out I’m not ready my Kindergarten to create a book. I’ll try again with them a little later.

I started out with writing templates I found on TPT. For the 1st graders I used Casey Lewis’s template from Kindergarten Korner.  My second graders used this template I got from Listen and Achieve. Each time they came to library we read about a different animal or person. Then we talked about “facts” not opinions about the animal/person. Then we created sentences about the topic. I picked animals/people that I thought they might have misconceptions about or correlated with what they were learning in the classroom. (Ooooo I snuck some teacher collaboration in there!) Topics varied anything from trap-door spiders and cicadas to Florence Nightingale and Christopher Columbus.


I created a basic Title page and Table of Contents page for the students to complete. It was very simple. If you want a copy, email me and I’ll be happy to forward it to you. (As soon as I learn how to load documents into this blog, I’ll start posting any handouts I create.) We ran out of time so I filled out their table of contents for them.


We used construction paper for front and back covers. Students picked their favorite color or two. The lightest was used for the front. Then the students assembled their books. I wanted to sew the pages together but with time constraints I ended up stapling the pages together. The duck tape covered the staples and made their books colorful. The students and their teachers loved the books. I hope the parents get a big kick out of their child’s creation. It was so exciting to see the students’ writing improve over the nine weeks.

I'm so proud of them. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Saturday, December 8, 2012

Laminack and Shoulders!?!

After basketball and conferences, this was a busy week! Both of my boys play basketball for their schools. It keeps me running in circles. If that was not enough to keep me busy, I attended the Title Conference in Gatlinburg this week. Had a blast! I went to Dr. Lester Laminack’s sessions and laughed my head off. He’s always a joy and full of ideas for me to use in the library. If you don’t have his books, I highly recommend them. His latest picture book Three  Hens and a Peacock is wonderful. I got it this summer and used it in my summer reading program. I can’t wait for his next one.

            I also met Dr. Michael Shoulders, a very energetic author. He will do visits at your school. I have his T for Tennessee book but do not have T is for Titanic. It’s on my list as of now. I’m looking forward to using ideas from both sessions in my library. Have a great weekend.
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