Sunday, January 27, 2013

If You Liked Danny, Meet Lucky

Sometimes the Reading Recovery teacher in me, from years long ago, just creeps back into my life.  This was the case when I stumbled upon the book, "A Lucky Pony," by Mia Coulton.  I was familiar with the Danny books published by Mary Ruth Books from my years as a Reading Recovery teacher.  My students always enjoyed the books about Danny, and were delighted as the collection grew.

I'll be honest, I'm easily pulled into books by characters.  Like my students, I enjoy seeing characters return across multiple titles.  Who can resist Ladybug Girl, Bear, Marley, Tacky, or the myriad of other characters who return in picture book after picture book?   Thankfully many of the texts designed to support young readers also have characters that return in stories across our collection.  My students enjoy Baby Bear, Ben, Mr. Cricket, The Meanies, Tom, Mrs. Wishy-Washy, and many more.

Lucky is a must have for any character collection.  My class particularly enjoyed "A Bath for Lucky."  In this story, Kate tries to give Lucky a bath.  Lucky isn't crazy about the idea and tries to hide in a variety of places, but being a horse doesn't make it easy to hide.  Finally Kate tricks Lucky into getting a bath, but Lucky gets the last laugh.  Students enjoyed the photographs used to help tell this funny story about giving a horse a bath.  The vocabulary is a bit controlled as is the case with many early books for young readers, but the story is interesting.  If your class loves fun characters, you'll want to check it out.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Happy 3rd Birthday, Dear Blog!

Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.  Ryunosuke Satoro

Seriously, where does the time go?  It's hard to believe it has been three years since I started this blog after encouragement from Mary Lee Hahn and Franki Sibberson of A Year of Reading.  When I first began the blog three years ago, my intent was to reflect on the learning in my classroom.  My hope was that by sharing reflections of our classroom, professional reading, and other learning conversations I'd improve the work I do with students.

However, after three years I've learned something else;  it isn't about the blog at all, but instead about the learning community I've become a part of over the last three years.  Honestly, it isn't writing the posts that helps me to rethink learning, but the reading of posts written by other bloggers.  It isn't the time I put into posts that causes me to pause, but the thoughts of readers who take the time to comment.  It is the conversation that carries across blogs that really pushes my thinking.

It's not just a blog, it's a community.  A couple of days ago I was reminded of this when Tracy at Thinking Stems  wrote a post reflecting on a comment I made on her blog nearly six months ago.  Like Tracy, I often find that the comments made by each of you stay with me for a long time.  Your thoughtful reflections bring me pause and give me energy.  On this, my third blog birthday, I'm reminded of how significant it is to be able to learn with other educators from around the world.  I'm reminded of how much I appreciate all of you who stop by to chat with me.

So, in celebration of 3:

3 Favorite Post from the Past Year

3 Collaborative Events I Enjoyed

3 Resolutions for the Next Year
  • Return to my goal of posting AT LEAST once a week.  (Yes, I've been struggling a bit.)
  • Respond to all comments as I appreciate all of you that stop by.  
  • Return to reading and commenting on at least 3 other blogs each day.