#Bookexcursion, It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2/12/18

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Etta, Bella, and I are excited to share our reads for another edition of It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?  #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

Our Reads This Week:

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The Battle of Junk Mountain by Lauren Abbey Greenberg

Shayne lives in Maryland and always spends summers on Thomas Cove with her grandmother Bea and her best friend Poppy.  Nostalgic for summers past, this vacation is different.  Poppy’s free time is limited because she has to work at her father’s grocery store. Bea is not ready to let go of her treasured collectibles as Shayne is organizing  and pricing them for sale at a flea market. Then to her surprise, Shayne develops an unlikely friendship with Civil War obsessed Linc, the grandson of Bea’s neighbor Cranky.

The Battle of Junk Mountain is a definitely a page turner. Lauren tackles not only familiar topics like changing and new friendships but also the serious topic of hoarding.  Although she can tackle new situations like banding lobster claws and driving a boat, it is evident that Shayne like Bea is holding on to the past and apprehensive about change.  Growing up and letting go is hard, but Shayne learns that change can actually surprise you in a good way.

A sincere thank you to fellow Marylander Lauren Abbey Greenberg for sharing an ARC of The Battle of Junk Mountain with my #bookexcursion group.  Look for its release in April 2018.  To read my full review, click here.

Beep and Bob: Too Much Space by Jonathan Roth

Bob attends Astro Elementary, a school near Saturn where only the bravest and smartest students get admitted.  Bob never intended to go to school in space but his plan of failing the admissions test backfired.  Who knew that choosing C for every answer would result in the only perfect score? Each chapter is Bob’s space blog entry or SPLOG with his alien sidekick Beep drawing the illustrations.  In Bob’s first SPLOG,  he explains how he met Beep, a little lost alien who thinks Bob is his new mother.

Bob’s adventures include getting his tongue stuck to ice on Pluto and accidentally having alien brain freeze sprayed in his eyes, which alters Bob’s personality.  His new-found confidence and knowledge propels Professor Zoome to take the class on a trip to a super massive black hole.  Will Bob and his classmates survive this dangerous class trip?

Like Lauren Abbey Greenberg, author/illustrator Jonathan Roth hails from my home state of Maryland.  Beep and Bob is a humorous and “sporky” transitional chapter book series that I look forward to sharing with students.  I was excited to discover that Too Much Space is the first book in the series.

Thank you to fellow #bookexcursion member Allison Stout for sharing her ARC from NCTE.  Beep and Bob: Too Much Space along with Book 2 Party Crashers publishes in March 2018.

Featured Dog Selection of the Week

Wanting to spread the dog love, Beagles and Books has a weekly feature of highlighting a literary selection with a canine main character.

Tiny and the Big Dig by Sherri Duskey Rinker Illustrated by Matt Myers

Tiny smells a bone. A BIG bone. So he starts digging. When a larger dog, a cat, and a bird discount his ability,  Tiny maintains his confidence that he is strong enough to bring that bone home. Tiny isn’t the only one who is optimistic, for his young owner also believes in him.

Written in rhyme, Tiny and the Big Dig is a story that celebrates strength and determination.  This quote sums its theme completely.

Matt Myers’ bold illustrations capture Tiny’s sheer willpower in obtaining his goal-a BIG, BIG bone. Tiny and the Big Dig will be a great addition for #classroombookaday.

Thank you so much for visiting Beagles and Books!  Have a great week!  Happy Reading!

#Bookexcursion, #mglit

The Battle of Junk Mountain by Lauren Abbey Greenberg

With all the cold, icy, and rainy Maryland weather this week, The Battle of Junk Mountain was the perfect read.  I was transported to the Maine coast with 12-year-old Shayne on her summer vacation.  Shayne lives in Maryland and always spends summers on Thomas Cove with her grandmother Bea and her best friend Poppy.  Nostalgic for summers past, this vacation is different.   Poppy’s free time is limited because she has to work at her father’s grocery store. Bea is not ready to let go of her treasured collectibles  as Shayne is organizing  and pricing them for sale at a flea market. Then to her surprise, Shayne develops an unlikely friendship with Civil War obsessed Linc, the grandson of Bea’s neighbor Cranky.

The Battle of Junk Mountain is a definitely a page turner. Once I began, it was hard to stop reading. The novel starts with anticipation of a fun-filled summer but as you read each chapter (and by the way, pay close attention to each title),  Lauren begins to tackle not only familiar topics like changing friendships but also the serious topic of hoarding.  Readers will quickly fall in love with Shayne for she shows both maturity and vulnerability.  While she can tackle new situations like banding lobster claws and driving a boat, it is evident that Shayne like Bea is holding on to the past and apprehensive about change.  Growing up and letting go is hard, but Shayne learns that change can actually surprise you in a good way.

A sincere thank you to fellow Marylander Lauren Abbey Greenberg for sharing an ARC of her debut middle grade novel The Battle of Junk Mountain with my #bookexcursion group.  Look for its release in April 2018.

#Bookexcursion, #classroombookaday, #nf10for10

Books Can Teach Us: NonFiction Picture Book 10 for 10

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I’m excited to be participating in Nonfiction Picture Book 10 for 10  for the first time. In my very first blog post, I shared my #pb10for10.  Thank you Cathy Mere and Mandy Robek for creating #pb10for10 for book bloggers to share our #booklove of amazing picture books.  In 2013, Julie Balen suggested to add a nonfiction picture book event that worked the same.  #nf10for10 provides the opportunity to bring our reading community together to share our favorite nonfiction picture books.  To check out more fabulous lists,  please visit the Google Community site.

This year, I sponsor a second grade class for #classroombookaday.  I strive to find engaging nonfiction picture books to read aloud to students. Being a part of #bookexcursion, I had been blessed with the opportunity to read and review some picture books prior to their publication.

Before reading each story, I ask the students just one question-What do you think the author is trying to teach us?   In my #nf10for10, I have included 10 nonfiction picture books that I have either already read for #classroombookaday or plan to read before the end of the school year.  All these amazing books can teach us information, the power of our actions or to persevere.

BOOKS TEACH US INFORMATION

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Terrific Tongues by Maria Gianferrari  Illustrated by Jia Liu

Terrific Tongues teaches us fascinating facts about how tongues work in unique ways. I absolutely love the format of this fabulous text.  Maria Gianferrari introduces each animal with an if and a might.  For example, if you have a tongue like a mop, you might be a…. (no spoilers).  The text lends itself well to a class read aloud.  Terrific Tongues will be released in April 2018.

Thanks to Maria Gianferrari for providing my #bookexcursion group with a copy of Terrific Tongues to read, share, and review.  For my full review, click here.

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Hawk Rising by Maria Gianferrari Illustrated by Brian Floca

Maria Gianferrari’s other forthcoming release, Hawk Rising,  is a narrative non-fiction picture book which tells the story of a mother and daughter observing a father hawk hunting for prey for his family. The text is true poetry, for she chooses her words carefully to dramatically describe the family’s actions and feelings as well as the hawk’s pursuit. With Brian Floca’s  gorgeous illustrations, the story takes flight. It teaches us the father hawk’s role in caring for his brood.  Hawk Rising publishes in June 2018.

Thanks to Maria Gianferrari for providing my #bookexcursion group with a copy of Hawk Rising to read, share, and review. To read my full review, click here.

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Ride On Will Cody by Caroline Starr Rose Illustrated by Joe Lillington

Written in lyrical verse, Caroline Starr Rose beautifully tells the legend of young Will Cody who later gained notoriety as folk hero and Wild West showman, Buffalo Bill.    Joe Lillington’s illustrations support the text by dramatically depicting the riders’ arduous journey.  At the end of the book, the author shares historical research about the Pony Express and Will Cody.  It teaches us about an important event in the history of the American West.

Thanks to Caroline Starr Rose who provided my #bookexcursion group with a copy of Ride On Will Cody to read, share, and review.  To read my full review, click here.

Can an Aardvark Bark

Can an Aardvark Bark? By Melissa Stewart Illustrated by Steve Jenkins

This engaging and informative nonfiction picture book asks questions such as Can an aardvark bark?, which is always answered in the negative. Then an alternative is given. No, but it can grunt and lots of other animals grunt too.  Can An Aardvark Bark? is perfect for a class read aloud because students can be highly involved in making the noises presented in the text. It teaches us that animals have different sounds to communicate.

BOOKS TEACH US HOW ACTIONS CAN BE POWERFUL

Waiting on the Biblioburro  by Monica Brown Illustrated by John Parra

Waiting on the Biblioburro is a blend of realistic fiction and nonfiction.  It tells the story of a little girl named Ana whose teacher moved far away. As a result, Ana treasures her one and only book reading it again and again.  One morning Ana and other children in her village are awakened by the sounds of real life teacher and librarian Luis Soriano Bohorquez.  Known as the Biblioburro, Luis carries books with the help of his burros, Alfa and Beto from town to town.  Beautifully written with colorful folk art illustrations, Waiting for Biblioburro teaches us how one’s actions can have extraordinary effects and the power of reading books.

Hachiko: The True Story by Pamela Turner  Illustrated by Yan Nascimbene

Hachiko: The True Story is a narrative nonfiction picture book.  Told by a fictional young boy named Kentaro about a real dog Hachiko, who lived in Tokyo. Hachiko was owned by Dr. Uneno.  Each morning Hachiko walked to the train station with Dr. Uneno and waited there for him to come home.  One day Kentaro discovers that Dr. Uneno has died and worries what will happen to Hachiko.  Readers discover that for almost ten years after his master’s death, Hachiko waited in the train station for Dr. Uneno to return.  Hachiko: A True Story teaches us about the power of friendship and loyalty.

BOOKS TEACH US TO PERSEVERE 

Shark Lady: The True Story of  How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist by Jess Keating  Illustrated by Marta Alvarez Miguens

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Shark Lady is a picture book biography about the life of Eugenie Clark.  Jess Keating eloquently shares how Eugenie’s love for sharks began at an early age after a visit to an aquarium and how despite the obstacles she faced, Eugenie held on to her dream of becoming a scientist.  Shark Lady teaches us not only that sharks should be admired rather than feared but also women can be anything that want to be.

The Books Boos That Changed the World: A True Story About an Accidental Invention (Really)! by Barry Wittenstein Illustrated by Chris Hsu

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In The Boo-Boos That Changed the Word, Author Barry Wittenstein humorously tells the story of Earle Dickson and how Band-Aids came to be.  It teaches us accidents can actually be helpful. Because Earle Dickson’s wife was accident prone, Band-Aids were invented.  This picture book biography will be released on February 13, 2018.

Thanks to Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for providing my #bookexcursion group with a copy of The Boo-Boos That Changed the World to read, share and review.  To read my full review, click here.

Me..Jane by  Patrick McDonnell

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Me…Jane is a inspiring and gorgeous picture book biography about the life of Jane Goodall.  The story begins with a young Jane receiving a toy chimpanzee named Jubilee.  Told with minimal text and sweet illustrations, Patrick McDonnell beautifully shares how Jane’s childhood experiences ultimately shaped the person she is today.  It teaches us about curiosity, passion, and pursuing your dream.

A Very Young Skater by Jill Krementz

A Very Young Skater is a biography about 10-year-old skater, Katherine Healy.  I absolutely LOVED this biography as a young reader and as soon as #nf10for10 was announced, I knew I had to include A Very Young Skater in my top ten list.  When I think back to my childhood, this series and especially Katherine’s story was the first nonfiction book I can truly remember reading OVER and OVER.  I distinctly remember returning it to the public library and renewing it hopeful no one had requested it.  While the photographs may look dated to my second grade readers, I hope reading and sharing the book will teach them the same lessons that it taught me, which is to work hard and never give up on your dreams.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my #nf10for10 selections.  I can’t wait to read other bloggers’ lists.  Have a great week!  Happy Reading!

#Bookexcursion

The Boo Boos That Changed the World by Barry Wittenstein Illustrated by Chris Hsu

Did you ever wonder how Band-Aids were invented?  If so, you are in luck.  Author Barry Wittenstein humorously tells the story of Earle Dickson and how Band-Aids came to be.

It seems Earle’s wife, Josephine was accident prone especially in the kitchen. When preparing meals, it was common for Josephine to cut or burn herself. To make matters worst, bandaging herself with bulky towels caused her to injure herself even more.  Earle took pity on his young wife fearing her cuts would become infected.  Fortunately, for Josephine, Earle was not only the son of a doctor but also worked for a hospital supply company.  Ever hear of Johnson & Johnson?

After some thoughtful pondering, Earle designed the first “band aid” which consisted of adhesive tape, sterile gauze, and crinoline.  Josephine’s boo boos were now covered, and they lived happily ever after, right?  But..wait!  Earle realized that Josephine was not the only person who could benefit from his invention. He shared his bandage with his boss, James Johnson, who agreed to produce and sell them as Band-Aids.

To the readers’ surprise, Band-Aids were not an overnight success.  It was not until they were mass produced by a machine and given away to the Boy Scouts and the army during World War II that Band-Aids became a hit not just in the United States but all over the world!

Told in a playful narrative, Wittenstein’s account of Earle’s invention is highly engaging and entertaining.  In my district, our third graders just finished a unit, Inventions and Innovations so I cannot wait to share this book with students.  In the author’s note, Wittenstein admits he invented Earle and Josephine’s dialogue and shares additional information about Earle.  Chris Hsu’s illustrations transport the reader back to that time period and make the story come alive.  Also included at the end of the book is a timeline, a list of other medical inventions from the 1920s and 1930s, and websites for further research.  The next time I use a Band-Aid, I will think fondly of Earle and thank him for his ingenuity.

Special thanks to Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for providing our #bookexcursion group with a copy of The Boo Boos That Changed the World.  Look for its release soon in February 2018.

#Bookexcursion, It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2/5/18

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Etta, Bella, and I are eager to share our latest reads for It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

Our Reads This Week:

The Mad Wolf’s Daughter by Diane Magras

Wee lass Drest and her family are attacked by knights from Faintree Castle.  Drest desperately wants to join her father, Mad Wolf of the North and her five brothers in this battle, but Mad Wolf orders her to hide. She witnesses her family bound, captured, and sailing away from her.  Her only hope of finding her family is a young knight named Emerick who Drest witnessed being attacked by one of his own men.  She strikes a deal with Emerick to take him to Faintree Castle and in return, he will release one of her brothers, although Drest plans to rescue her entire family.

Throughout their journey, Drest hears tales of her family’s brutality from Emerick, which she does not believe to be true.  In addition, a bandit by the name of Jupp shares his own story of her father’s cruelty.  Drest begins to realizes that words are strong weapons because not only is she beginning to doubt her family but also she is struggling to figure out her own identity. Can a warrior be brave and kind?

The Mad Wolf’s Daughter is an adventure that has action and heart.  With each chapter, Diane Magras kept me on the edge both excited and afraid to read on.  I absolutely love Drest who learns that you can’t always control our own legend, and sometimes words not swords can save lives.

A very special thanks to Diane Magras for providing our #bookexcursion group with an ARC of The Mad Wolf’s Daughter.  Pre-order NOW so you have it in your hands on March 6, 2018.

Mrs. Smith’s Spy School for Girls by Beth McMullen

Abby Hunter is a student at Smith School for Children.  But it turns out that the boarding school is not what it appears to be.  The school is actually a cover for an elite spy ring named the Center.  And Abby’s mother, Jennifer, is the Center’s most talented agent.  At first, Abby cannot believe her mother hid her occupation from her, but as Abby looks back on her childhood, she begins to connect the dots.

For the past decade, Jennifer has been chasing the Ghost, a threatening criminal.  Mrs. Smith informs Abby that her mother is missing; therefore, they need Abby’s help in finding her.  During Spy Training 101, Abby does find a friend in Toby, a fellow student who is a whiz with technology.  His iPhone apps are amazing! But frenemy Veronica is less than enthused with teaching Abby.  After a failed attempt to locate her mom, Abby decides to take matters in her own hands and show everyone that she is indeed her mother’s daughter.

Beth McMullan’s new series is definitely one I will recommend to students.  In fact, after reading the synopsis, I have a student waiting for me to bring this book to school tomorrow. Taking place in present day, young readers will be able to relate to the characters even though the setting and plot is far different from their own lives.  Mrs. Smith’s Spy School for Girls published in July 2017 but readers only have to wait until July 2018 for the second installment-Power Play. Can’t wait to read and share on Beagles and Books!

Featured Dog Selection of the Week

Wanting to spread the dog love, Beagles and Books has a weekly feature of highlighting a literary selection with a canine main character.

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The Pillow Keeps Moving by Laura Gehl Illustrated by Christopher Weyant

A dog and cat are shivering outside of a pillow store.  While the cat stands guard, the dog enters the pillow store, curls up in the warmth, and is bought by a man.  When the man complains that his “pillow” is broken, the salesman asks him a series of questions which are all answered in the affirmative.  The story continues with the dog posing as a footstool and coat.  Finally, the man who lives alone realizes that the dog has other talents, as all dogs do!

Told with relatively few words, The Pillow Keeps Moving is a story that begs to be read again and again.  Readers must pay close attention to the illustrations because they are crucial to the plot.

The Pillow Keeps Moving was released in January 2018.  I can’t wait to read it as a pick for #classroombookaday with students.

Etta, Bella, and I thank you for visiting Beagles and Books.  Have a great week!  Happy Reading!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 1/29/18

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Etta, Bella, and I are eager to share our latest reads for It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

Our Reads This Week:

11:11 Wish by Kim Tomsic

Megan is going through a lot of adjustments.  Her mom recently passed away and her family has moved from Colorado to Arizona.  Moving means leaving her best friend Hannah and starting over at a new middle school.

On her very first day, Megan gets zapped, which is a ritual for new students.  She must do a dare by the end of the day.  Her assignment-do something exciting by 3 p.m.  If that isn’t enough on her plate,  Megan becomes stuck in the middle of the battle for Spirit Week Captain between fellow seventh graders, Rhena and Ally.  Megan’s luck changes when in her history class, she sees a cat clock identical to one her grandmother had in her kitchen.  She recalls a rhyme that her grandmother said “Pop. Click. Seconds tick. Wish at eleven-eleven, and watch it stick.”  It can’t hurt to wish for something exciting like snow, right?  After her wish does comes true, Megan slowly realizes that this newly acquired magical power comes with some adverse consequences.

11:11 Wish is an enchanting story not only trying to fit in but also finding yourself. Readers will be sympathetic of  Megan’s dilemma.  She wants to have a fresh start at her new school and becomes caught up in Rhena and Ally’s rivalry as soon as she arrives.  As the drama unfolds at school, Megan needs to decide whether she wants to keep using magic to get friends or show her true self.

Special thanks to Kim Tomsic for providing our #bookexcursion group with an ARC of 11:11 Wish.  Look for its release soon on February 13, 2018.

Walter & Dragon: 100 Friends by Ariel Bernstein

Warren and his family are moving, which means he will need to make new friends.  But unlike his twin sister, Ellie, making friends does not come easy to Warren.  Besides, Warren already has a best friend, Dragon.  To everyone else, Dragon may be a stuffed animal, but to Warren, Dragon is real and he is the only one who sees Dragon in that way.

Making friends is a challenge, but losing a contest to Ellie is worse; therefore, Warren declares that he will make 100 new friends.   Accepting Dragon’s advice that friends like compliments, Warren attempts to make friends in school.  Warren’s compliments though are not always taken well. By the end of the first day of school, Warren hasn’t made any new friends, and Dragon goes missing!  Can Warren find his one and only friend? Will Warren ever make a real friend?

Warren & Dragon is a fun new transitional chapter book series that is sure to be a hit with young readers.  Author Ariel Bernstein has created a relatable character in Warren, for he encounters typical kid problems such as sibling rivalry and making friends. Warren’s relationship with Dragon show his imagination, for what child hasn’t pretended his/her favorite animal was alive?

Special thanks to author Ariel Bernstein for providing our #bookexcursion group with an ARC of Walter & Dragon: 100 Friends.  Look for its release along with Book 2 Warren & Dragon: Weekends with Chewy in August 2018.

The Boo-Boos That Changed the World: A True Story About An Accidental Invention (Really!) by Barry Wittenstein Illustrated by Chris Hsu

Did you ever wonder how Band-Aids were invented?  If so, you are in luck.  Author Barry Wittenstein humorously tells the story of Earle Dickson and how Band-Aids came to be.

It seems Earle’s wife, Josephine was accident prone especially in the kitchen. When preparing meals, it was common for Josephine to cut or burn herself. To make matters worst, bandaging herself with bulky towels caused her to injure herself even more.  Earle took pity on his young wife fearing her cuts would become infected.  Fortunately, for Josephine, Earle was not only the son of a doctor but also worked for a hospital supply company.  Ever hear of Johnson & Johnson?

After some thoughtful pondering, Earle designed the first “band aid” which consisted of adhesive tape, sterile gauze, and crinoline.  Josephine’s boo boos were now covered, and they lives happily ever after, right?  But..wait!  Earle realized that Josephine was not the only person who could benefit from his invention. He shared his bandage with his boss, James Johnson, who agreed to produce and sell them as Band-Aids.

To the readers’ surprise, Band-Aids were not an overnight success.  It was not until they were mass produced by a machine and given away to the Boy Scouts and the army during World War II that Band-Aids became a hit not just in the United States but all over the world!

Told in a playful narrative, Wittenstein’s account of Earle’s invention is highly engaging and entertaining.  In my district, our third graders just finished a unit, Inventions and Innovations so I cannot wait to share this book with students.  In the author’s note, Wittenstein admits he invented Earle and Josephine’s dialogue and shares additional information about Earle.  Chris Hsu’s illustrations transport the reader back to that time period and make the story come alive.  Also included at the end of the book is a timeline, a list of other medical inventions from the 1920s and 1930s, and websites for further research.  The next time I use a Band-Aid, I will think fondly of Earle and thank him for his ingenuity.

Special thanks to Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for providing our #bookexcursion group with a copy of The Boo Boos That Changed the World.  Look for its release soon in February 2018.

Love, Mama by Jeanette Bradley

Kipling’s mama is off on a trip and he misses her.  Although he tries to soothe himself with replacements such as Pillow Mama and Picture Mama, they do not comfort him. When the doorbell rings, Kipling discovers a sad, soggy box outside his home.  It’s from Mama! Contained in the package was a paper heart with a special message from Mama who reminds Kipling how immense she loves him.  Kipling returns the favor by creating and mailing his own box which professes his mutual love for her.  To Kipling’s surprise, Mama returns home with his care package in hand!

Love, Mama is a heartwarming story that affirms love when distance separates us from family.  Jeanette Bradley’s illustrations are adorable and tenderly show Kipling’s longing for his mother, his happiness when he receives his Mama’s special delivery, and his excitement when she returns home.  In fact, reading Love, Mama takes me back to a time when receiving a card or a package in the mail from a loved one was the best present ever.

Special thanks to author Jeanette Bradley for providing our #bookexcursion group with a copy of Love, MamaLove, Mama recently published in January 2018.

Featured Dog Selection of the Week

Wanting to spread the dog love, Beagles and Books has a weekly feature of highlighting a literary selection with a canine main character.

Back to Forth and Upside Down by Claire Alexander

It’s Principal Slippers’ birthday! Young pup Stan and his class are making him birthday cards.  Stan loves to draw but his teacher Miss Catnip reminds the class that cards include writing too. Uh oh!  As Stan begins to copy Happy Birthday from the board, he notices his letters are back to front and upside down.  Frustrated Stan is even more discouraged when all his other classmates seems to be writing with ease.

At recess, depressed Stan honestly confides to his classmate Jack that he can’t write.  Jack is supportive and tells Stan to ask Miss Catnip for help reminding him we all have to ask for help sometimes. The story ends with Stan bravely asking for help and realizing he is not the only student who struggles with writing letters.

Working with kindergarten and first grade students, I love the message of this book.  All students learn at a different pace so Back to Front and Upside Down reinforces that practice is the best way to improve a skill and it’s ok to ask for help.   Author illustrator Clare Alexander’s soft and cute drawings of the animal students will appeal to young readers.  I especially love the illustrations of Stan’s tongue out while writing, This behavior is quite common when I observe young students putting forth their best effort.

Etta, Bella, and I thank you for visiting Beagles and Books.  Have a great week!  Happy Reading!

#ReadYourWorld, Multicultural Children's Book Day

Priscilla and the Hollyhocks by Anne Broyles Illustrated by Anna Alter

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Beagles and Books is excited to participate in Multicultural Children’s Book Day this year!  Special thanks to author Ann Broyles for sending me  Priscilla and the Hollyhocks to review.  All opinions are my own.

Born into slavery, Priscilla’s mother was sold when she was very young.  Her only remembrance of her mother are the hollyhocks that her mother planted by the cow pond.  Old Sylvia showed Priscilla how to make hollyhocks dolls and float them in the water just like her mother.

It was long before Priscilla began working in the Big House for her master.  Her only escape was on Sundays to watch her hollyhock dollies float and dance across the pond. One day Priscilla met a man named Mason Basil Silkwood, who happened to be strolling around the property.  He told Priscilla she was bright and should be in school.  After their conversation, Priscilla stood taller.

After her master died, Priscilla is sold to a Cherokee family; she still scattered hollyhock seeds near their house to keep her mother’s memory alive.  When her new masters were forced to move, Priscilla hid hollyhock seeds in her pocket and became part of the Trail of Tears march.  During her march through town, Priscilla recognized Mr. Silkwood and spoke to him.  That chance meeting changed Priscilla’s life, for that evening Mr. Silkwood finds Priscilla to buy her freedom. As Priscilla spreads hollyhock seeds at her new home, she states that she is slave no longer and daughter once more.

Anne Broyles honestly yet tenderly shares Priscilla’s journey from slavery to freedom and to me, the story evoked the positive message of hope.  To Priscilla, her mother’s hollyhocks were a symbol of hope and eventually safety and freedom.  Anna Alter’s beautiful illustrations capture Priscilla’s changing emotions throughout her journey. Not being aware that Native American families owned slaves, I appreciated the author note’s explaining Priscilla’s story in greater detail.


Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/18) is in its 5th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

Current Sponsors:  MCBD 2018 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board.

2018 MCBD Medallion Sponsors

HONORARY: Children’s Book Council, Junior Library Guild

PLATINUM:Scholastic Book Clubs

GOLD:Audrey Press, Candlewick Press, Loving Lion Books, Second Story Press, Star Bright Books, Worldwide Buddies

SILVER:Capstone Publishing, Author Charlotte Riggle, Child’s Play USA, KidLit TV, Pack-n-Go Girls, Plum Street Press

BRONZE: Barefoot Books, Carole P. Roman, Charlesbridge Publishing, Dr. Crystal BoweGokul! World, Green Kids Club, Gwen Jackson, Jacqueline Woodson, Juan J. Guerra, Language Lizard, Lee & Low Books, RhymeTime Storybooks, Sanya Whittaker Gragg, TimTimTom Books, WaterBrook & Multnomah, Wisdom Tales Press

2018 Author Sponsors

Honorary Author Sponsors: Author/Illustrator Aram Kim and Author/Illustrator Juana Medina

Author Janet Balletta, Author Susan BernardoAuthor Carmen Bernier-Grand, Author Tasheba Berry-McLaren and Space2Launch, Bollywood Groove Books, Author Anne BroylesAuthor Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Eugenia Chu, Author Lesa Cline-Ransome, Author Medeia Cohan and Shade 7 Publishing, Desi Babies, Author Dani Dixon and Tumble Creek Press, Author Judy Dodge Cummings, Author D.G. Driver, Author Nicole Fenner and Sister Girl Publishing, Debbi Michiko Florence, Author Josh Funk, Author Maria Gianferrari, Author Daphnie Glenn, Globe Smart Kids, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Author Quentin Holmes, Author Esther Iverem, Jennifer Joseph: Alphabet Oddities, Author Kizzie Jones, Author Faith L Justice , Author P.J. LaRue and MysticPrincesses.com, Author Karen Leggett Abouraya, Author Sylvia Liu, Author Sherri Maret, Author Melissa Martin Ph.D., Author Lesli Mitchell, Pinky Mukhi and We Are One, Author Miranda Paul, Author Carlotta Penn, Real Dads Read, Greg Ransom, Author Sandra L. Richards, RealMVPKids Author Andrea Scott, Alva Sachs and Three Wishes Publishing, Shelly Bean the Sports QueenAuthor Sarah Stevenson, Author Gayle H. Swift Author Elsa Takaoka, Author Christine Taylor-Butler, Nicholette Thomas and  MFL Publishing  Author Andrea Y. Wang, Author Jane Whittingham  Author Natasha Yim

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

twitter part final

Join the conversation and win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party! http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/twitter-party-great-conversations-fun-prizes-chance-readyourworld-1-27-18/

Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

#ReadYourWorld, Multicultural Children's Book Day

Shelly Bean the Sports Queen Scores a Goal by Shelly Boyum-Breen Illustrated by Marieka Heinlen

 

Beagles and Books is excited to participate in Multicultural Children’s Book Day this year!  Special thanks to author Shelly Boyum-Breen for sending me Shelly Bean the Sports Queen Scores a Soccer Goal to review. All opinions are my own.

Shelly Bean the Sports Queen is a series about a confident young girl who loves to try new sports.  In this book, Shelly Bean and her brothers, best friend, and dogs, are playing outside a stadium where the U.S. women’s soccer team is playing Brazil.  After a soccer ball flies over the fence, the gang decides to play a game themselves.

Soccer is a new sport for Shelly Bean so playing does not come easy.  She misses kicking the ball  and falls down more than once.  The gang gives her tips and encouragement to keep trying. After the U.S. team wins the game, the gang attempts to give the soccer ball to the players.  They are invited to watch the U.S. team’s game tomorrow where Shelly Bean observes the players falling and getting back up, just like her!.  Perhaps, Shelly Bean can be a great soccer player after all!

As a reading specialist, the Shelly Bean series would be great to share with students for read alouds or independent reading.   Shelly Bean is a good role model for students because she displays a positive growth mindset and encourages girls to participate in sports.  In addition, the gang is supportive of each other, which demonstrates collaboration and teamwork.  At the end of the book, the author has included tips for learning how to kick a ball as well as a glossary of soccer vocabulary.


Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/18) is in its 5th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

Current Sponsors:  MCBD 2018 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board.

2018 MCBD Medallion Sponsors

HONORARY: Children’s Book Council, Junior Library Guild

PLATINUM:Scholastic Book Clubs

GOLD:Audrey Press, Candlewick Press, Loving Lion Books, Second Story Press, Star Bright Books, Worldwide Buddies

SILVER:Capstone Publishing, Author Charlotte Riggle, Child’s Play USA, KidLit TV, Pack-n-Go Girls, Plum Street Press

BRONZE: Barefoot Books, Carole P. Roman, Charlesbridge Publishing, Dr. Crystal BoweGokul! World, Green Kids Club, Gwen Jackson, Jacqueline Woodson, Juan J. Guerra, Language Lizard, Lee & Low Books, RhymeTime Storybooks, Sanya Whittaker Gragg, TimTimTom Books, WaterBrook & Multnomah, Wisdom Tales Press

2018 Author Sponsors

Honorary Author Sponsors: Author/Illustrator Aram Kim and Author/Illustrator Juana Medina

Author Janet Balletta, Author Susan BernardoAuthor Carmen Bernier-Grand, Author Tasheba Berry-McLaren and Space2Launch, Bollywood Groove Books, Author Anne BroylesAuthor Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Eugenia Chu, Author Lesa Cline-Ransome, Author Medeia Cohan and Shade 7 Publishing, Desi Babies, Author Dani Dixon and Tumble Creek Press, Author Judy Dodge Cummings, Author D.G. Driver, Author Nicole Fenner and Sister Girl Publishing, Debbi Michiko Florence, Author Josh Funk, Author Maria Gianferrari, Author Daphnie Glenn, Globe Smart Kids, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Author Quentin Holmes, Author Esther Iverem, Jennifer Joseph: Alphabet Oddities, Author Kizzie Jones, Author Faith L Justice , Author P.J. LaRue and MysticPrincesses.com, Author Karen Leggett Abouraya, Author Sylvia Liu, Author Sherri Maret, Author Melissa Martin Ph.D., Author Lesli Mitchell, Pinky Mukhi and We Are One, Author Miranda Paul, Author Carlotta Penn, Real Dads Read, Greg Ransom, Author Sandra L. Richards, RealMVPKids Author Andrea Scott, Alva Sachs and Three Wishes Publishing, Shelly Bean the Sports QueenAuthor Sarah Stevenson, Author Gayle H. Swift Author Elsa Takaoka, Author Christine Taylor-Butler, Nicholette Thomas and  MFL Publishing  Author Andrea Y. Wang, Author Jane Whittingham  Author Natasha Yim

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

twitter part final

Join the conversation and win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party! http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/twitter-party-great-conversations-fun-prizes-chance-readyourworld-1-27-18/

Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

 

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 1/22/18

Etta, Bella, and I are eager to share our latest reads for It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.img_2105

Our Reads This Week:

R is for Rebel  by J. Anderson Coats

Three generations before Malley was born, the country of Milea was conquered by the New Wealds. After her parents were imprisoned for being resisters to the new government, Malley was sent to a national school. The school’s mission is to reform Malley and other young girls to be loyal Wealdan subjects and train them for domestic service.  From the very first chapter, it is very clear that Malley is her parents’ daughter and is not willing to be reeducated.  She wants to do something song worthy, like her Milean ancestors. At first, she thinks she is alone in her fight, but as the story unfolds, Malley notices that other girls quietly subscribe to the same beliefs as her.  She soon realizes that resistance is all around her in many different forms.

R is for Rebel is a novel that left me thinking and questioning.  As Malley stated,  “It’s one thing to lose something; another thing to entirely give it up.”  When I first began reading, I wasn’t quite sure if R is for Rebel was a historical fiction or a fantasy.  In the end, it doesn’t matter because like other dystopian novels, Malley’s story teaches us an important lesson-to always personally fight for what you most value.

Special thanks to J. Anderson Coats for providing our #bookexcursion group with an ARC of R is for Rebel.  Look for its release in February 2018.

Isadora Moon Goes to Schoolby Harriet Muncaster

Isadora is special because she is half fairy and half vampire.  The time has come for her to attend school, but does Isadora belong in fairy school or vampire school?  In this first book of the series, Isadora amusingly discovers whether she is more fairy, more vampire or perhaps, she is something all her own. After all, different can beautiful too!

Young readers at my school will definitely sink their fangs into this transitional chapter book series.  Harriet Muncaster’s illustrations are gorgeous using only black and pink colors.  Students will be able to relate to Isadora who is learning about her own identify and how she fits in.

Currently, there are four published books in the U.S..  The fifth book, Isadora Moon Goes to the Ballet will be released on January 23, 2018.  Special thanks to fellow #bookexcursion member Amber Webb for introducing me to the Isadora Moon series.

The Bat Can Bat by Gene Barretta

Homonyms, homophones, and homographs?  No wonder children get confused!

HHH

Permission to post visual granted from Kearson’s Classroom Blog.

Gene Barretta to the rescue! Author of picture books such as Dear Deerand Zoola Palooza is back with The Bat Can Bat, a fun and engaging picture book that teach homonyms, words that have different meanings but sound and are spelled the same.

Set at an athletic event, The Bat Can Bat features 2 homonyms on each page spread.  Readers can use context as well as the illustrations to identify the different meanings of each homonym.   The illustrations are especially important because they provide a visual to support students in understanding each word’s multiple meanings.  Last year, my school had a school-wide focus on teaching multiple meaning words. The Bat Can Bat would have been a great resource for teachers.  Makes me want to revive our initiative!

Special thanks to fellow #bookexcursion member Allison Stout for getting an ARC of The Bat Can Bat from Macmillian Children’s Publishing at the 2017 NCTE convention.

Featured Dog Selection of the Week

Wanting to spread the dog love, Beagles and Books has a weekly feature of highlighting a literary selection with a canine main character.

Frankie by Mary Sullivan

The story begins with Francine affectionately called Frankie leaving the shelter.  As soon as Frankie enters her foster home, she takes in her new surroundings especially things like a ball, bone, toys and a bed.  Frankie quickly realizes all these things belong to Nico, the family dog, and Nico is not willing to share.  Will Frankie get her own toys or will Nico learn to share?

Frankie is a story with few words but a lot of heart.  The adorable illustrations visually tell the story and capture both Frankie and Nico’s emotions. Frankie hits close to home because the story was inspired by author/illustrator Mary Sullivan’s real foster puppy Frankie and a portion of the book’s proceeds are being donated to the shelter Austin Pets Alive.  Shelter pups are dear to my heart because both Etta and Bella are rescues. Luckily, from the first day we brought Bella home, Etta has been very willing to share and still does.

Etta, Bella, and I thank you for visiting Beagles and Books.  Have a great week! Happy Reading!

#Bookexcursion

Stegothesaurus by Bridget Heos Illustrated by T.L. McBeth

Once upon a time, there were three dinosaurs. A stegosaurus, another stegosaurus and a stegothesaurus!  While the first two brothers use simple words like big to describe a mountain, their brother Stegothesaurus uses robust words like gargantuan, gigantic, and Goliath.

The three brothers’ tranquil day comes to a halt when an allosaurus suddenly startles them.  Because Stegothesaurus was thinking of rich vocabulary like frightening and formidable to describe their predator, he was unable to escape with his brothers.  Stegothesaurus though soon learns that she isn’t an allosaurus, but rather an allothesaurus.  But wait, how did she learn all these so many rich and powerful words?  Read to find out!

 

Stegothesaurus is truly a teacher’s dream picture book. T.L. McBeth’s endearing and adorable drawings of the dinosaur brothers warmly show their range of emotions.   Not only will students love the story, but also I cannot think of a better way to teach the power of using synonyms in our oral and written language. What I love about Bridget Heos’ creative story is that Stegothesaurus uses multiple synonyms to describe things so teachers can also introduces shades of meaning.  Which word is stronger?  Gargantuan, gigantic or Goliath?

Special thanks to Christian Trimmer of Henry Holt Books for Young Readers for sending my #bookexcursion group an advance reader’s copy.  Stegothesaurus has a release date of June 2018.