The Dark

This week is our final week for the Buckeye Children’s Book Award Nominees.  We read The Dark by Lemony Snicket and illustrated by Jon Klassen.

Lemony Snicket is the well known author of the Series of Unfortunate Events.  Jon Klassen is the author and illustrator on This is Not My Hat, a Caldecott Award winner and last year’s Buckeye Award Nominee.  Before reading the book, we discussed things that people are afraid of.  The list included snakes, spiders, heights, being alone and many more. I tried to use a ghost story telling voice and the students seemed mesmerized by the pictures and the story.

Extension Activities include watching the book trailer, flash light games and shadow puppets.


Tiger in My Soup

by Kashmira Sheth, illustrated by Jeffery Ebbeler

This week we are continuing to read the Ohio’s Buckeye Children’s Book Award Nominees.  Our book this week is Tiger in My Soup by Kashmira Sheth who is from India and illustrated by Jeffery Ebbeler from Cincinnati, Ohio.  Before starting the story, we discussed what the boy is wearing  on his head on the cover of the book.  We then  looked at the end papers, which look like they were inspired by Andy Warhol’s artwork Soup Cans.

Jeffrey Ebbeler included a house which looks like a tree house on rocks, which were inspired by a vacation home he visited and some Indian paintings. We discussed what kitchen utensils the boy used to defend against the tiger.   After the story we discussed whether the tiger was real or imagined.

Extension Activities include the video of Shirley Temple singing Animal Crackers in Soup , Jeffrey Ebbeler’s website which shows pictures of the house that he based the house on the rocks and sketches showing the artwork process as well as websites about tigers including one from the Columbus Zoo in Ohio.

Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle

This week we are continuing to read the books which have been nominated for the Ohio Buckeye Award.  This week our featured book is Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle.

First we watched the book trailer of Flora and the Flamingo. Then we “read” Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle and discussed what we thought was happening in the story. Extension activities include printing  the activity sheets or watching  the book demo video.  I put additional wordless books on display in the library.

Buckeye Award Nominees

This week we began reading the books that have been nominated for Ohio’s children book award, the Buckeye Award.  The first book we read was Carnivore’s written by Aaron Reynolds and illustrated by Dan Santat. Prior to reading the book, we discussed  the following words  –  Carnivore,  Vegetarian and Sushi.

I shared with them the  activity sheets from Chroniclebooks.  We then discussed what a book trailer was, as well as a movie trailer.  Be sure to watch the book trailer for Carnivores.

Parts of a Book

This week we discussed the parts of a book. We went over Title, Author, Illustration, Illustrator, Front Cover, Spine, Back cover, Pages and Bar Code/ISBN (book number).  I read Pumpkin Cat by Anne Mortimer  to the first graders.  I invited the students to participate. Whenever I said So, they chimed in and said… they did.  After reading the story, the students did a Parts of Book worksheet which also had a pumpkin on it. I did NOT have them follow the directions, but instead had them use the word bank below and then copy the words into the empty boxes above.  With the first graders, we did it together.

I did the same parts of a book lesson with the second graders, however,  they were able to do the worksheet independent with little difficulty.  In addition, I read How many seeds in a pumpkin? written by Margaret McNamara, illustrated by G. Brian Karas which includes the Math concept of counting by twos, fives and tens as well as a lesson about not being able to judge things by their size.

Taking care of your library books

This week we talked about taking care of your library books.

With the first graders,  I found a suggestion  to show the video  “Don’t Let the Pigeon Touch the Books” on YouTube.  I paired it with Mo Williems newest Pigeon book “Pigeon needs a Bath”.  After the video we  discussed things that Pigeon did in the video that would NOT  be taking care of your books.


With the second graders,  we read a rhyming story “At This Very Moment” by Jim Arnosky and then read the rhymes on the  posters that I have posted in the library.  We discussed ways that books might get wet and how to avoid that from happening, gave examples of mistreating the book’s spine, talked about what the word “due” means and when books are due in our library, as well as what to do if you find rips or pages falling out of books.


For more suggestions on how to take care of your library books, check out  Book Care on elementarylibraryroutines .

Froodle by Antoinette Portis

This week we read Not a Box and  Froodle by Antoinette Portis.   We talked about word bubbles and quotation marks prior to reading Froodle.   



Video – Animated version (makes the illustrations move) of  Not a Box

Video – Book Trailer (like a Movie Trailer, advertisement to encourage you to see/read) for Froodle

Draw objects using sheets of paper with different outline of shapes


Stripes of All Types



This week, I read Stripes of All Types by Susan Stockdale.  We discussed the purpose of stripes (to hide/camouflage, both predators and prey  or to stand out/warn that they are poisonous) . After reading the book, we identified the animals shown and read some of the information about them at the end of the book.  I then had the students guess what animals had the stripes shown at the end of the book.  I covered the answers with post-its and  let them have 3 guesses before showing them the correct answer.  As always, I had a display of books about camouflage and encouraged them to check them out and see if they could find the animals hiding in the books.

Extension Activites:

Watch the video Camouflage – Brainpop Jr. (requires subscription – username and password)

For more information about camouflaged animals, go to Enchanted Learning – Camouflaged Animals


Spring into a Good Book

In celebration of Spring which begins officially this week,  I decorated the library bulletin board with a Spring into a Good Book banner and then used book covers to brighten it up.


During library program for grades 1-2, I am reading “Eat Like a Bear” by April Pulley Sayre and illustrated by Steve Jenkins. Before reading we talked about ways that we know it is Spring (longer days, flowers starting to pop up, animals that hibernate start to wake up).  As I was reading, I pointed out that the book is full of action words.  We talked briefly about verbs.

Extension Activities :

1) Students may make a collage by drawing an outline and then gluing scraps of brown construction paper or paper grocery bags.


2) Check out Ben Kilham’s slide show of bears eating different foods and other activities