Monday, November 03, 2008

News From the Library--November 3, 2008

The Widow's Broom
by Chris Van Allsburg

This week third graders heard one of my favorite Halloween stories, The Widow's Broom by Chris Van Allsburg. It's a haunting tale, a great one to read aloud, as the suspense grows and grows and the ending challenges the listeners to see if they picked up the clues. As with all of Van Allsburg's work, the illustrations are evocative and unusual. In addition, there is a subtle but powerful message about prejudice and bullying. All in all, a great story to read aloud at this time of year.

Also in the library this week....

Kindgergarten--The rollicking verse in Julia Donaldson's Room on the Broom tickled the kindergarteners this week. This is a great little story about generosity and cooperation as well as just being a fun book to read at Halloween.

First Grade--In Diane deGroat's Trick or Treat Smell My Feet, Gilbert wishes that he could have a really unique Halloween costume. Well, his wish comes true but not in the way he expected. This story is a great one to show children how flexibility and "rolling with it" is a good idea....especially when you find yourself in your sister's ballerina tutu for Halloween by mistake!

Second Grade--Poor Dr. Pig. The sole surviving member of the Pig family made famous in that other story about the wolf finds himself friendless at Halloween. After several attempts at creating a friend in his lab, he finally creates a monster! Porkenstein!! Kathryn Lasky's book of the same name is a delightful tale of fairy tale revenge and true friendship and best of all, someone to go trick or treating with on Halloween!

Third Grade--see opening post.

Fourth Grade---In a great little folktale from Spain, Esteban and the Ghost, the main character bravely spends the night in a castle haunted by a ghost who robbed some robbers. This tale is both funny and scary--a great combination for reading aloud! Sibyl Hancock does a great job re-telling this tale and the illustrations by Dirk Zimmer add to the charm.

Fifth Grade--In preparation for their explorer reports, fifth graders learned how to access and use our great online resource, Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

Sixth Grade--Sixth graders finished their resumes of the presidential candidates this week. Next week (the day before the election) we'll discuss what they learned from making the want ad and the resume.

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