Sunday, March 23, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? March 24, 2014

It's Monday! What are you Reading? From Picture Books to YA edition, is a meme created by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers.  Every Monday book lovers share their own #IMWAYR posts.  So here I are the books I've read, listened to and loved this week.

Loved Books of the Past Week
These are the books I loved from last weeks pile and will be placing 
on the desks of children and colleagues alike this week.

Please Bring Balloons
by Lindsay Ward
This was my favourite read of the week.  Its the story of a little girl who finds a note on a carousal polar bear that leads to a remarkable, possibly imagined, night time adventure.  Lindsay Ward's words are sweet, but it is really the illustrations that make the story so magical.  Using cut paper art, Ward not only uses her own illustrations, but re-uses found paper.  The houses in one scene are made from notebooks, with some even have writing on them.  The snowy grounds in the North Pole are really maps with a wash of white over top.  My favourite illustration, however, are the dozens of polar bears dancing, each bear having been cut out of a different sort of paper.  Children from grade one to three will be delighted by the story and the illustrations!  I am hoping to use this book to inspire my students to create their own paper-cut illustrations to celebrate Earth Day.

There are No Animals in this Book (Only Feelings)

I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I started Chani Sanchez book.  Part art appreciation, part feelings exploration, with a touch of humor, No Animals in this Book! (Only Feelings) was an interesting read. The pictures on each page are actual pieces of art, combined with Sanchez's words about feelings.  The author begins by stating that just like animals, feelings say things too.  This is an interesting analogy, and one that kids could connect with.  It is written in an conversational tone, with the animals interrupting from time to time, because they to want to be part of the story.  This style of writing has been made more popular by such books as  Chloe and the Lion, but in this case, I'm not sure that it adds anything to the story.  The addition of the animals seem more like an excuse to add certain pieces of art, rather than helping to connect with the idea of feelings.  Despite this I would still likely use this book in a grade one or two classroom to discuss ways of representing feelings through sound and art.

Ten Birds Meet a Monster
Ten Birds Meet a Monster is this weeks Canadian pick.  The story is a sequel to Young's Ten Birds.  It tells the story of 10 birds who encounter what appears to be a monster, while exploring a room in a house.  These clever birds decide to try to scare the monster away by creating their own creatures.  Using clothing found strewn across the floor, the birds begin to create their own monsters, but no matter how many birds join in, the creature does not budge. The sentence structure in Young's book is simple, but rich in descriptive words.  Words like resourceful and creative are used to describe the birds, while indifferent and unmoved describe the monsters feelings.  The pen and ink drawings are detailed and intricate.  The simplicity of the black and white pictures gives the story a "thriller movie" feel and helps keep the audience wondering if the monster with ever make its move.  This book would be a great way to show student how adjectives and descriptive words can make simple phrases more exciting.  Young also uses ordinal numbers to tell the reader which bird joins in next, making it a useful book for reading in math.

What I'm Listening to on My Commute
I have a 20-30 minute car ride to work and often pass the time with a good book.

hush, hush (Book 1)
by Becca Fitzpatrick
I am continuing to listen to hush, hush but I am at the point of maybe dropping it.  It's just not holding my attention.

What's on My Bedside Table This Week:
These are the books I'm looking forward to reading this week.

A Watermelon in the Sukkah
by Sylvia A. Rouss

Jane, the Fox and Me

 Well that's it for this week!
Let me know if you've read any of my #IMWAYR books from this week or having any suggestions of what I should read next.  Have a great week and happy reading!


  1. The Lindsey Ward book looks so beautiful. I keep looking for this one at the library. Several of my students tell me I need to read Hush Hush, but it's not really my kind of book in the first place. I also enjoy listening to books on my commute. I'm thinking about getting an Audible subscription so that I can vastly supplement my library's collection of audios.

    1. I haven't heard of Audible before. I will have to check it out! Do you know if it is available in Canada? Please bring balloons was such a great story!

  2. I loved Jane, The Fox & Me. Quite haunting really, and the illustrations are gorgeous. I've seen Ten Birds and Ten Birds Meet a Monster in our library, both books look mighty interesting.