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You Are a Beautiful Beginning, written by Nina Laden and illustrated by Kelsey Garrity-Riley

A newly published literary treasure! Released just days ago, You Are a Beautiful Beginning is a charming book that shares the message of optimism, self-acceptance and hope. Laden’s predictable pattern of using sentence pairs is accompanied with Garrity-Riley’s highly engaging and busy illustrations. Together, the words and pictures tell the journey of a young child… Continue reading You Are a Beautiful Beginning, written by Nina Laden and illustrated by Kelsey Garrity-Riley

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When Stars Are Scattered

By Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed This compelling story of two young brothers' survival in a refugee camp after fleeing their warn-torn country of Somalia is based on the lives of Omar and Hassan Mohamed. When Stars Are Scattered vividly paints a picture of what a refugee camp is actually like: the struggle for food,… Continue reading When Stars Are Scattered

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We Should Be Looking for Rainbows by Lynsey Burkins

“After the storm, the sun comes out, and a rainbow fills the sky!”- Share Your Rainbow: 18 Artists Draw Their Hope for the Future by Various (Author), R. J. Palacio (Introduction) As we approach this new school with uncertainty and unrest I can’t help but to find ways to center myself with hope. This will… Continue reading We Should Be Looking for Rainbows by Lynsey Burkins

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Sharing Fry Bread with 2nd and 4th Graders

“Fry bread is...food, shape, sound, color, flavor, time, art, history, place and nation. Fry bread is everything; fry bread is us.”  Fry Bread is doubly gifted. It’s a simple, short-verse picture book that even the youngest readers will enjoy, but it’s also an informational book through an extended author’s note for older readers. The author… Continue reading Sharing Fry Bread with 2nd and 4th Graders

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Through The Eyes of a Fourth Grader: Ways to Make Sunshine by Renée Watson

When I learned that Ways to Make Sunshine by Renée Watson would be released on April 28th, I tried convincing myself that I could wait until the summer months to indulge. At the end of April, it arrived on my doorstep unexpectedly - a birthday surprise! In other words, it was readily available for virtual… Continue reading Through The Eyes of a Fourth Grader: Ways to Make Sunshine by Renée Watson

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I Promise by Lebron James, Illustrated by Nina Mata

The best part of a new school year is the anticipation it holds. A new school year means a new teacher, new opportunities, and maybe even new friends. While the 2020-2021 school year is beginning unlike any other year amidst a global pandemic, promises are still ready to be made. In Lebron James's new children's… Continue reading I Promise by Lebron James, Illustrated by Nina Mata

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Project LIT: A Nationwide Movement Started by Jarred Amato

Looking for something fun and exciting to do this school year? Whether you’re teaching in person, remotely or in a hybrid model, start a Project LIT Book Club. Project LIT Book Club is a national movement to eradicate book deserts. Book deserts are communities that lack books. So high school teacher, Jarred Amato, and his… Continue reading Project LIT: A Nationwide Movement Started by Jarred Amato

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Your Place in the Universe by Jason Chin

Jason Chin's Your Place in the Universe starts small, with a picture of four eight-year-old children looking through a telescope. With each page turn, the featured subjects grow larger, from an ostrich to a giraffe to the Mount Everest to the moon. Comparisons help readers make sense of the size of each featured object and start to… Continue reading Your Place in the Universe by Jason Chin

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Why Did the Whole World Stop?: Talking with Kids about COVID-19 by Heather Black

The title of this book asks a question I think many of us, not just children, have been pondering over the last few months. We have all had our lives uprooted as we deal with the effects of a global health emergency. As adults, we can become overwhelmed with all the information that is available… Continue reading Why Did the Whole World Stop?: Talking with Kids about COVID-19 by Heather Black

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It’s the 10th Anniversary of #PB10for10

This summer, I attended #IREL20 facilitated by Tricia Ebarvia and Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul. During a breakout session, a fellow educator named Tamika introduced me to Bobbie Harro’s cycle of socialization (I am sorry not to have Tamika’s full name to give her proper credit.) This work, and Tamika’s explanation, helped deepen my understanding of how… Continue reading It’s the 10th Anniversary of #PB10for10

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Starting Anew

As an educator, I have always felt that August offers the kind of renewal and restart that so many others seek to find in January. This August feels especially ripe with opportunities to tip everything on it’s head and to address what’s broken, to actively change what has been exacerbating inequities in our education system… Continue reading Starting Anew

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The Strangers by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Before we left school due to COVID, one of my sixth grade book clubs had just finished a book that they wanted to blog about. If you are a fan of the Among the Hidden series, you will love the new Greystone Secrets series by Margaret Peterson Haddix.  The first book, entitled The Strangers, will… Continue reading The Strangers by Margaret Peterson Haddix

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I Have Missed Books

A Sharing of My Best Friend by Julie Fogliano & Jillian Tamaki This was a different kind of reading summer. Normally, I go to local libraries on hot days, browse the recent releases in the children's section for hours, and check out stacks upon stacks of beautiful books. I visit small, local bookstores and linger… Continue reading I Have Missed Books