Tuesday, April 20, 2010

King Bidgood's in the Bathtub

This classic tells the story who would rather stay in the tub all day and night than anything else the court can come up with.

This story is a great way to get kids thinking about predictions.
After discovering the problem, I have my kids predict what could get him out of the tub. They create a patterning book - ex. Try having a party. That will get him out. I join them together to make a class book for the class to read.

I also like to revisit this book as we discuss story elements of fiction. It helps students provide clear examples of the events that ultimately lead to the solution.

As a Math connection I also like to read this story when we talk about time of day. It helps reinforce time as part of the setting and encourages readers to analyze pictures clues to determine time of day (like how the pictures have a blue hue as the sun sets.)

Just like other books written by Audrey Wood this quickly becomes a classroom favorite!

Monday, April 19, 2010

The Important Book

What better title for my first effort? Margaret Wise Brown's book is one that uses description to determine to significance of everyday objects - with a special message at the end. She leaves the reader with the message that everyone is special just for being themselves.

Several ideas come to mind for this book:
First is the discussion of importance. Rather than reading the text, students can generate a list of important things to know about the objects in the book. Start by providing an example from the text and encourage students to evaluate what is the most important (the most important thing about the rain is...). Solicit there ideas rather than using just those in the book. Encourage students to share why that is important. With interactive whiteboard technology - students can vote on what they believe is the most important.

Second is using the message of the story to write a patterned book. Students can write sentences or generate a list of important things about themselves. I use this as a descriptive writing lesson to get students writing about something they are very familiar - themselves! The writing mimics the pattern in the text and ultimately evaluates the important thing about each child. It's a great way to build your students knowledge and understanding of their classmates.

Third is the use of color in the text - just like her more well known Goodnight Moon, students can analyze the use of black and white to contrast color. Discuss why the selected pictures would be in black and white.

Mission Statement

Just like any business venture, I consider this blog my mission. Every teacher knows there is never enough time. Simple trying to manage your daily case load, assess, plan, instruct and evaluate leaves little time for much else. So here it is...my mission. Inside those books, neatly organized and shelved in my closet, that rarely see sunlight are stories that resonate with children.

So it's time to break the bindings, open the covers, and discover the wealth of possibilities. Inside each book are opportunities to teach and develop readers. This blog is more a forum; a place for teachers to read and post ideas for those often unused books, that house so much undiscovered potential. Each post will include summaries, classroom uses and *hopefully* internet resources for teachers. I look forward to the many things I will discover and the stories that will have lasting impressions on my students.