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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme started by Sheila at Book Journeys and now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date. It is a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It’s also a great chance to see what others are reading right now…you just might discover the next “must-read” book!

Kellee and Jen, of Teach Mentor Texts, decided to give It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit – join us! We love this meme and think you will, too.

We encourage everyone who participates to support the blogging community by visiting at least three of the other book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

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Tuesday: Bob Ross and Peapod the Squirrel by Robb Pearlman

Thursday: This Book is Gray by Lindsay Ward

Sunday: Author’s Guest Post: “Little Readers Produce Big Readers” by Jamie McHone, Author of Everything is Always Gonna Be Alright, Durban Frankenshooze

**Click on any picture/link to view the post**

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Kellee

**Descending from newly read to older**

Novels

  • The Toll by Neal Shusterman: Read it. That is all. (P.S. Taking notes on the timeline at the beginning helps if you are struggling.)
  • How It Feels to Float by Helena Fox: “Biz knows how to float. She has her people, her posse, her mom and the twins. She has Grace. And she has her dad, who tells her about the little kid she was, who loves her so hard, and who shouldn’t be here but is. So Biz doesn’t tell anyone anything. Not about her dark, runaway thoughts, not about kissing Grace or noticing Jasper, the new boy. And she doesn’t tell anyone about her dad. Because her dad died when she was six. And Biz knows how to float, right there on the surface—normal okay regular fine.”
  • Forever Neverland by Susan Adrian: “A contemporary sequel to J. M. Barrie’s timeless classic Peter Pan. Clover and Fergus are the great-great-grandchildren of Wendy Darling (yes, that Wendy). And now Peter Pan wants to take them to Neverland for the adventure of their lives! But Clover’s a little nervous–she’s supposed to look after her brother. Fergus is autistic, and not everyone makes him feel welcome. What will happen to him in this magical world?”
  • Bouncing Back by Scott Ostler: “Back in his old basketball league, Carlos Cooper owned the court, sprinting and jumping and lighting up the scoreboard as opponents (and teammates) watched in awe. Now thirteen-year-old “Cooper the Hooper” is out of his league, new to life in a wheelchair, and struggling to pull his weight with his wheelchair basketball team, the Rollin’ Rats.”

I went on a picture book binge reading spree during Thanksgiving Break after NCTE/ALAN, and I read so many wonderful picture books! I am so happy to share them all above, but I don’t think you want me to write about them all, but here are a few highlights…

  • The Seekers by Hari Panicker and Deepti Nair: The artwork in this book blew me away! Tied with the interesting mythological tale, the book is a treasure.
  • Albert’s Quiet Quest by Isabelle Arsenault: There is power in quiet.
  • Operation Photobomb by Becky Cattie: Photobombing in the jungle! Such vivid illustrations and fun storytelling that will definitely win readers’ hearts.
  • The Big Race by David Barrow:  A fun take on the tortoise and the hare but with a different message (one many kids need!).
  • Between Us and Abuela: A Family Story from the Border by Mitali Perkins: Christmas looks very different for different families in America, but this is a story that hasn’t been told and readers need to see it (either as a mirror or window).
  • At the Mountain’s Base by Traci Sorell: Such a powerful book looking at a family waiting for their person to return from war at the base of a mountain.
  • Big Boys Cry by Jonty Howley: We need more books stopping toxic masculinity and the notion that boys should ignore emotions.
  • Skulls by Blair Thornburough: I just love the execution of this book. Takes a fun twist on a nonfiction book.
  • How to Code a Rollercoaster by Josh Funk: I love this series by Josh Funk because it makes coding less foreign and ties in a fun story with it.
  • Rocket Says Look Up by Nathan Bryon: Rocket just wants us all to notice the bigger world and stop being sidetracked by the small things.
  • Kevin the Unicorn: It’s Not All Rainbows by Jessika Von Innerebner: So often kids do not get to hear that it is okay to not be happy. Kevin shows us that it is.
  • Room on our Rock by Kate Temple: This book can be read forward and backwards, each with a different message and lesson.

Out of the picture books I read with Trent, his top 3 favorites were…

  • Happy Pig Day by Mo Willems: I had to limit him to 1 Elephant and Piggie book–he just loves them!
  • Snack Attack by Terry Border: Trent loves this photography illustrated book where snacks are trying to escape their doomed future.
  • Rot, the Cutest in the World by Ben Clanton: This shows that cuteness in the eye of the beholder and we’re all cute in our own way. And it makes Trent LAUGH!

To learn more about any of these books, check out my 2019 Challenge page  or my read bookshelf on Goodreads.

Ricki

The busiest semester of my life is over in one week! One of my three classes of students just turned in their unit plans, so I’ve been grading all week. There are 72 students in that class, so it is taking a bit of time. 🙂

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Kellee

  • Reading: Impossible Music by Sean Williams
  • Listening: Sick Kids in Love by Hannah Moskowitz
  • Reading with Trent: Mia Mayhem is a Superhero by Kara West

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Tuesday: Snail & Worm All Day by Tina Kügler

Thursday: Franny K. Stein, Mad Scientist: Bad Hair Day by Jim Benton

Sunday: Q&A with Author Ginny Rorby

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

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“Little Readers Produce Big Readers”

Little readers produce big readers. We need both. My favorite thing to do as a child was to curl up with a good book. I still recall my favorites. I still remember the characters I loved. I am an avid reader today, and I believe it is because I had the opportunity and the freedom to immerse my imagination into the world of words. Little thinkers produce big thinkers. We need both. I believe what the little mind absorbs sets them up for what the big mind can absorb and that they are capable of absorbing much. I believe curiosity is the key to critical thinking, which is why I tried to leave plenty of room for inquisitions in the book. Little critical thinkers produce big critical thinkers. We need both. My intent in throwing a big word at a little reader was to make them stop and question what it means, thereby building a larger vocabulary and a desire to build upon it. And let us just face it, in today’s atmosphere, there are many pertinent issues to be faced head-on and discussed among parents and children. Some issues in the book are a bit ‘in your face,’ and others are more subdued. Again, hopefully, to persuade conversations to generate and build on. It has been my experience that children have a tremendous sense of humor and can appreciate the sometimes randomness of the book. That was my intent, anyway. Hope you enjoy!   — Jamie

About the Book: Durban is a Durban bird with giant sneakers and wings so small he can’t fly. He’s tired of being made fun of by all the other flying birds, so he sets off on a journey to find out who he really is. Along the way, he meets Maudry, a smart and sassy female bird, and Wainwright, a grumpy worm with a short temper. Together, the unusual trio goes through thick and thin to discover what it really means to be yourself.

About the Author: Jamie McHone is from southwest Virginia and currently resides in Blacksburg, Virginia with her husband and Rottweilers. This is her first children’s book.

Thank you so much for this guest post–we agree! Early childhood literacy is such a key to lifelong success!

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The Day the Crayons Quit
Author and Illustrator: Lindsay Ward
Published: December 1, 2019 by Two Lions

Goodreads Summary:Gray just wants to be included. But the other colors are always leaving him out. So he decides to create his own project: an all-gray book. Once upon a time, there lived a wolf, a kitten, and a hippo…

Gray just knows it’s going to be perfect. But as he adds page after page, the Primary and Secondary colors show up…and they aren’t quite so complimentary.

A book within a book, this colorful tale explores the ideas of fitting in, appreciating others, and looking at things from another perspective and also uses personality and wit to introduce basic color concepts.

Ricki’s Review: I adored this book. I love stories about the underdog, and gray is definitely an underdog color! Fans who love The Day the Crayons Quit will absolutely love this story. It is very funny and a fantastic read aloud. There are many themes for discussion within the book. Kids might consider whose stories are missing as they think about gray’s emotions. They might also think about the other colors and how they are rude to gray and what this might feel like. The characterization of all of the colors offers much for discussion, too. Teachers and parents will love to read this aloud to children.

Kellee’s Review: As a daughter of an art teacher and art museum director, art education has always been important to me. I think the lack of art classes in elementary and secondary school as well as the push away from imagination in schools is a detriment to our children, so books like this give me so much hope! This book celebrates color education, creative writing, word play, and mood. It even pulls in social emotional learning with a focus on friendship and cooperation. Lindsay Ward did such a fantastic job with all of the elements of the story, and I cannot wait to share this book far and wide. It will be a fantastic read aloud in classrooms when discussing primary/secondary colors, story telling and mood, or even just to talk about how to work together. I cannot tell you enough how much you, your teacher friends, your parent friends, and all the kids you know need this book 🙂

Teacher’s Tools for Navigation: The possibilities of this text are very exciting. Teachers might have students choose a story of a lesser known or lesser considered character and have students develop their own fiction! They can share these stories and have a discussion about the people and things we don’t often consider.

Discussion Questions: How does gray feel? How do the other crayons make him feel?; How might you apply gray’s experiences to your own life?; How does the author make the book funny? How does this add to your experience as a reader?

We Flagged: “They never let me color! Just one tiny bit of GRAY? Is that so much to ask?”

You can also look inside the book HERE.

Read This If You Loved: The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt, Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall, Who Stole Mona Lisa? by Ruthie Knapp, The Dot and Sky Color by Peter H. Reynolds, Chalk by Bill Thomson, Art & Max by David Weisner, Not a… series by Antoinette Portis, Art by Patrick McDonnell, Perfect Square by Michael Hall, Cloudette by Tom Lichtenheld

Recommended For: 

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Bob Ross and Peapod the Squirrel
Author: Robb Pearlman
Illustrator: Bob Ross with Jason Kayser
Published October 8th, 2019 by Running Press Kids

Summary: Bob Ross paints a stunning home for his squirrel friend, Peapod, in this delightful nod to a painter icon.

This is the sweet story of a painter (Bob Ross) who helps his squirrel friend, Peapod, find the perfect home to live in. Bob paints an actual Ross painting, “Meadow Lake,” in this charming tale about helping friends and embracing the serenity of life. Bob, along with Peapod, go through the various steps and processes to painting, including praising those “happy little accidents” that happen along the way.

About the Creators: Robb Pearlman is the author of many books, including Groundhog’s Day Off, Raggedy Ann and Andy: Leaf Dance, and Passover is Here! Today, his favorite color is blue, but it may be purple tomorrow! He grew up in New York City and now lives in a white and green house in New Jersey with his husband and Oscar, the butterscotch-colored best puppy in the world.

Bob Ross — artist, painting instructor, and television personality — has for decades charmed and inspired the world with his matchless look, signature style, and words of wisdom and encouragement.

Review: This picture book definitely captures the whimsy and gentleness of Bob Ross. Anyone who has ever watched his show knows that Bob just loves creating things and making something beautiful. He always continues even through (happy little) mistakes and other obstacles, and his work is always something that takes the viewers’ breath away. I think it was very smart of the publishers to use an actual Bob Ross painting in the text because it is like the cherry on top. That, with the addition of his fun pet Peapod, really brings Bob’s personality to the book.

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: This text would be a wonderful book to use to compare a written work with a televised work. Students could look at what ways the book captures Bob Ross’s personality, style, speech, etc.

Additionally, the book ends with instructions on paint and supplies for readers to recreate the painting made in the book.

Discussion Questions: 

  • What Bob Ross phrases did the author include?
  • How did the inclusion of Peapod change what the story would have been without him?
  • What type of person do you think Bob Ross is based on how he instructs?
  • What do you think Bob Ross would tell you about accidents or mistakes?
  • How did Bob Ross create the image with only white, brown, green, blue, yellow, and crimson?
  • What words would you use to describe Peapod’s personality? Bob Ross’s?

Flagged Passages: 

But don’t worry–Bob Ross always embraces happy little accidents! And it turns out beautifully:

Read This If You Love: Bob Ross, Art, The Masterpiece by Jay Miletsky, Henri’s Scissors by Jeanette Winter, Paint Me a Picture by Emily Bannister

Recommended For: 

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**Thank you to the publisher for providing a copy for review**

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IMWAYR 2015 logo

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme started by Sheila at Book Journeys and now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date. It is a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It’s also a great chance to see what others are reading right now…you just might discover the next “must-read” book!

Kellee and Jen, of Teach Mentor Texts, decided to give It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit – join us! We love this meme and think you will, too.

We encourage everyone who participates to support the blogging community by visiting at least three of the other book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

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We hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving Break!
We’ll be back this week with reviews and back next Monday for a regular IMWAYR 🙂

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Tuesday: Bob Ross and Peapod the Squirrel by Robb Pearlman

Thursday: This Book is Gray by Lindsay Ward

Sunday: Author’s Guest Post: “Little Readers Produce Big Readers” by Jamie McHone, Author of Everything is Always Gonna Be Alright, Durban Frankenshooze

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

 Signature andRickiSig

 
Share

IMWAYR 2015 logo

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme started by Sheila at Book Journeys and now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date. It is a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It’s also a great chance to see what others are reading right now…you just might discover the next “must-read” book!

Kellee and Jen, of Teach Mentor Texts, decided to give It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit – join us! We love this meme and think you will, too.

We encourage everyone who participates to support the blogging community by visiting at least three of the other book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

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The NCTE Conference is over, but today is the first day of the ALAN Workshop! We’ll be back in a couple of weeks 🙂

We also hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving Break!

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

 Signature andRickiSig

 
Share

IMWAYR 2015 logo

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme started by Sheila at Book Journeys and now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date. It is a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It’s also a great chance to see what others are reading right now…you just might discover the next “must-read” book!

Kellee and Jen, of Teach Mentor Texts, decided to give It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit – join us! We love this meme and think you will, too.

We encourage everyone who participates to support the blogging community by visiting at least three of the other book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

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Kellee

**Descending from newly read to older**

  

  • More Mo Willems! Trent just adores him, and who can blame him?
  • Trent says he loved all of the books, but his favorite picture books from this batch (that are not Mo Willems books) are: Snowballs by Lois Ehlert; How to Be a T-Rex by Ryan North; Good Night, Mr. Panda by Steve Anthony; You Must Bring a Hat by Simon Philip; and Over-Scheduled Andrew by Ashley Spires
  • I read Leave It To Abigail! and Fight of the Century by Barb Rosenstock and wow! Some amazing narrative biographies about just two revolutionary women!

To learn more about any of these books, check out my 2019 Challenge page  or my read bookshelf on Goodreads.

Ricki

This week, I had a meeting with all of my Master’s advisees on their projects. I enjoyed reading their papers and progress, so I didn’t finish any books beyond those that I read to my sons for bedtime.

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Kellee

  • Listening: How it Feels to Float by Helena Fox
  • Reading: The Toll by Neal Shusterman (I am hoping to finish as soon as I am done with this post!)
  • After that? Who knows! With NCTE and ALAN coming up, I do not get as much reading done, but I will be surrounded by some amazing books and authors!

Ricki

I am still listening to The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys. This book is so good.

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We’re off to the NCTE Annual Convention and ALAN Workshop followed by Thanksgiving Break!

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

 Signature andRickiSig