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Recent Reading

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  • keyze3
    Recently I ve read Gary Paulsen s LAWN BOY. It s a short read and an amusing story. Probably a great book if you have boys in your class who are non-readers.
    Message 1 of 12 , Dec 1, 2007
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      Recently I've read Gary Paulsen's LAWN BOY. It's a short read and an amusing story.
      Probably a great book if you have boys in your class who are non-readers. The topic of
      earning money is appealing too.

      I also read HARD HIT by Ann Taylor. This is a book written in prose from the point of view
      of a boy. I gave this to a couple of non-reader boys also. At first they didn't want to read
      it because they said they "hated poetry." Both finished the book in one class period and
      liked it. It's a good find.

      Finally I read Strausser's GIVE A BOY A GUN. A student asked me to read it. Wow! This
      was a powerful book. I loaned it to a colleague but I think this would be a great book for
      an entire school staff to read.

      I've been sorry to hear what happened to Ritchie. It seems that objections over books has
      increased recently. I've had to defend several books lately - books I was very surprised to
      hear objections to.

      Karin
    • Ata Bird
      I recently have read the Twilight books and I was surprised by how compelling I found them. I also am reading Coraline, Arrival, and I will soon start on the
      Message 2 of 12 , Dec 2, 2007
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        I recently have read the Twilight books and I was surprised by how compelling I found them.   I also am reading Coraline, Arrival, and I will soon start on the Uglies books.  I was recently at a book talk by Michael Cart about some of the best new YA books—there are so many yummy things on that list I think it will take me a while to get through them all.

         

        I have also been noticing more talk about challenges, especially as the premier of the Golden Compass draws closer.  I’ve noticed that much of it involves things taken out of context.  People who have not seen a movie not yet open, and have not read the book, let alone the whole trilogy, the movies are based on.  This semester I took a wonderful course on Intellectual Freedom at my university, the University of Illinois.  I’ve learned the vital importance of written policy.  One instructor even mentioned having the challenger read the work in its entirety before the challenge can be submitted, and having this as part of the policy.  I definitely thought of this reading Ritchie’s troubles.

         

        -Ata Bird

        MS/K-12 Program

        UIUC

         

         

         

        From: middle_school_lit@yahoogroups.com [mailto:middle_school_lit@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of keyze3
        Sent: Saturday, 01 December, 2007 10:38
        To: middle_school_lit@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [middle_school_lit] Recent Reading

         

        Recently I've read Gary Paulsen's LAWN BOY. It's a short read and an amusing story.
        Probably a great book if you have boys in your class who are non-readers. The topic of
        earning money is appealing too.

        I also read HARD HIT by Ann Taylor. This is a book written in prose from the point of view
        of a boy. I gave this to a couple of non-reader boys also. At first they didn't want to read
        it because they said they "hated poetry." Both finished the book in one class period and
        liked it. It's a good find.

        Finally I read Strausser's GIVE A BOY A GUN. A student asked me to read it. Wow! This
        was a powerful book. I loaned it to a colleague but I think this would be a great book for
        an entire school staff to read.

        I've been sorry to hear what happened to Ritchie. It seems that objections over books has
        increased recently. I've had to defend several books lately - books I was very surprised to
        hear objections to.

        Karin

      • kerleybarbara
        I finally had a chance this weekend to read Peter Sis s THE WALL. I thought the book was fascinating, thought-provoking, innovative -- but was surprised to
        Message 3 of 12 , Dec 2, 2007
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          I finally had a chance this weekend to read Peter Sis's THE WALL. I
          thought the book was fascinating, thought-provoking, innovative -- but
          was surprised to see it shelved in my local Borders right beside
          picture books for 4- to 8-year-olds.

          Obviously, it's not a book for a 4-year-old (despite the shelving!)
          However, it did get me thinking just where it should be shelved -- in
          other words, who is the intended audience for this book?

          For those of you who work with kids on a regular basis, I'm curious:
          What kinds of responses are you getting about it from the kids who read
          it? (And how old are they?) Also, are you finding that it's a title
          that kids jump into on their own, or one they appreciate more with an
          adult who can offer some support for the complex ideas in the text?

          Any thoughts?

          Barb Kerley
          barbara@...
        • Clare O'Callaghan
          I put it in the 940 s along with his Tibet: through the red box. I then need to hand sell them to the older kids. What I find most frustrating about really
          Message 4 of 12 , Dec 3, 2007
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            I put it in the 940’s along with his Tibet : through the red box.  I then need to hand sell them to the older kids.  What I find most frustrating about really good non-fiction picture type books, it that they often get short shrift from teachers who assign books that must be at least 100 pages……So Diane Stanley bios, Demi bios, all kinds of great books don’t get checked out but the ‘Childhoods of Great Americans’ do!

             

            Clare O'Callaghan

            Librarian

          • kerleybarbara
            ... Oh, interesting. Excuse my ignorance, but I m not very up on Dewey numbers -- what does the 940 signify? ... By older, you mean how old? Have you heard
            Message 5 of 12 , Dec 4, 2007
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              "Clare O'Callaghan" wrote:

              > I put it in the 940's along with his Tibet: through the red box.

              Oh, interesting. Excuse my ignorance, but I'm not very up on Dewey
              numbers -- what does the 940 signify?

              >I then need to hand sell them to the older kids.

              By older, you mean how old? Have you heard back from kids who have
              read The Wall? What do they think?

              The reason I'm asking is it really is innovative in structure--which
              intrigues me (it certainly doesn't seem like the kind of book you
              could read aloud to a classroom, tho I may be wrong and if any
              teachers have tried this, I'd be curious to hear how they did it) and
              also, a lot of the content is not about things that a typical middle
              schooler might be familiar with, so I guess I'm wondering (it's hard
              for me to tell, being 47 myself!) how kids react to it in a solitary
              reading.

              > What I find most frustrating about really good non-fiction picture
              type books, it that they often get short shrift from teachers who
              assign books that must be at least 100 pages..

              Yes, I agree with this!

              Thanks for your thoughts, Clare.

              Barb Kerley
              barbara@...
            • Monica Edinger
              I did a unit on The Wall recently with my 4th graders. It was WONDERFUL and I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend giving it a try if you or someone you know
              Message 6 of 12 , Dec 4, 2007
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                I did a unit on The Wall recently with my 4th graders. It was
                WONDERFUL and I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend giving it a try if
                you or someone you know teaches immigration. I have a bunch of posts
                about it at my blog
                (http://medinger.wordpress.com/?s=teaching+the+arrival&searchbutton=Go%21)
                and at my class blog
                (http://blogs.dalton.org/edinger/category/the-arrival/). There are
                images, podcasts, and even a video when Shaun Tan came to visit. (The
                man still needs to get to Ellis Island!)

                Monica



                --
                Monica Edinger
                Newbery 2008
                NCTE's Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee
                The Dalton School
                New York NY
                edinger@...
                monicaedinger@...
                my blog educating alice is at http://medinger.wordpress.com
              • Monica Edinger
                Darn it. Not The Wall at all. What was I thinking? Sorry. I do love The Wall, but it is too old for my 4th graders. Monica ... -- Monica Edinger Newbery
                Message 7 of 12 , Dec 4, 2007
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                  Darn it. Not The Wall at all. What was I thinking? Sorry. I do love
                  The Wall, but it is too old for my 4th graders.

                  Monica

                  On Dec 4, 2007 12:49 PM, Monica Edinger <monicaedinger@...> wrote:
                  > I did a unit on The Wall recently with my 4th graders. It was
                  > WONDERFUL and I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend giving it a try if
                  > you or someone you know teaches immigration. I have a bunch of posts
                  > about it at my blog
                  > (http://medinger.wordpress.com/?s=teaching+the+arrival&searchbutton=Go%21)
                  > and at my class blog
                  > (http://blogs.dalton.org/edinger/category/the-arrival/). There are
                  > images, podcasts, and even a video when Shaun Tan came to visit. (The
                  > man still needs to get to Ellis Island!)
                  >
                  > Monica
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > --
                  > Monica Edinger
                  > Newbery 2008
                  > NCTE's Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee
                  > The Dalton School
                  > New York NY
                  > edinger@...
                  > monicaedinger@...
                  > my blog educating alice is at http://medinger.wordpress.com
                  >



                  --
                  Monica Edinger
                  Newbery 2008
                  NCTE's Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee
                  The Dalton School
                  New York NY
                  edinger@...
                  monicaedinger@...
                  my blog educating alice is at http://medinger.wordpress.com
                • Monica Edinger
                  But I did show The Wall to them (and the German copy the author sent me) and the kids were very intrigued. I think if I did use it with kids I do the same
                  Message 8 of 12 , Dec 4, 2007
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                    But I did show The Wall to them (and the German copy the author sent
                    me) and the kids were very intrigued. I think if I did use it with
                    kids I do the same thing I did with The Arrival. See --- perhaps I
                    can make something yet out of my faux pas:)

                    Monica

                    On Dec 4, 2007 12:52 PM, Monica Edinger <monicaedinger@...> wrote:
                    > Darn it. Not The Wall at all. What was I thinking? Sorry. I do love
                    > The Wall, but it is too old for my 4th graders.
                    >
                    > Monica
                    >
                    >
                    > On Dec 4, 2007 12:49 PM, Monica Edinger <monicaedinger@...> wrote:
                    > > I did a unit on The Wall recently with my 4th graders. It was
                    > > WONDERFUL and I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend giving it a try if
                    > > you or someone you know teaches immigration. I have a bunch of posts
                    > > about it at my blog
                    > > (http://medinger.wordpress.com/?s=teaching+the+arrival&searchbutton=Go%21)
                    > > and at my class blog
                    > > (http://blogs.dalton.org/edinger/category/the-arrival/). There are
                    > > images, podcasts, and even a video when Shaun Tan came to visit. (The
                    > > man still needs to get to Ellis Island!)
                    > >
                    > > Monica
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > --
                    > > Monica Edinger
                    > > Newbery 2008
                    > > NCTE's Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee
                    > > The Dalton School
                    > > New York NY
                    > > edinger@...
                    > > monicaedinger@...
                    > > my blog educating alice is at http://medinger.wordpress.com
                    > >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > --
                    > Monica Edinger
                    > Newbery 2008
                    > NCTE's Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee
                    > The Dalton School
                    > New York NY
                    > edinger@...
                    > monicaedinger@...
                    > my blog educating alice is at http://medinger.wordpress.com
                    >



                    --
                    Monica Edinger
                    Newbery 2008
                    NCTE's Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee
                    The Dalton School
                    New York NY
                    edinger@...
                    monicaedinger@...
                    my blog educating alice is at http://medinger.wordpress.com
                  • kerleybarbara
                    ... love The Wall, but it is too old for my 4th graders. ... There s certainly a lot of rich material to work with, and Sis s art always pulls me in. The book
                    Message 9 of 12 , Dec 5, 2007
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                      Monica Edinger wrote:

                      >Darn it. Not The Wall at all. What was I thinking? Sorry. I do
                      love The Wall, but it is too old for my 4th graders.

                      > But I did show The Wall to them (and the German copy the author sent
                      > me) and the kids were very intrigued. I think if I did use it with
                      > kids I do the same thing I did with The Arrival.

                      There's certainly a lot of rich material to work with, and Sis's art
                      always pulls me in.

                      The book is fascinating, to be sure. I guess the reason I raised the
                      issue on this particular list_serve in the first place is that it's
                      so different from other children's nonfiction books (in structure and
                      content) that I wondered how it's being received.

                      I love seeing innovative nonfiction and think it's great to stretch
                      the genre (great for all of us -- teachers, librarians, writers, and
                      most importantly, kids!).

                      When I got done reading it, my first thought was, "This book would be
                      perfect for a thoughtful high school student, esp. one who loved art
                      or political science." I then showed it to my daughter, who is a
                      senior in high school (thoughtful--yes. budding artist--no. poli sci-
                      -maybe!) and she said it seemed more like a middle school book to her.

                      That's when I decided to post here and see what folks thought...

                      Barb Kerley
                      barbara@...
                    • jilldetweiler
                      Hi, I would put The Wall in the 940 s as well, and work to make sure students and teachers didn t let it languish there. The Dewey Decimal question brought me
                      Message 10 of 12 , Dec 5, 2007
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                        Hi,
                        I would put The Wall in the 940's as well, and work to make sure students and teachers
                        didn't let it languish there.

                        The Dewey Decimal question brought me out of lurking, somewhat reluctantly though
                        because I realize my extreme geeky pleasure in the numbers is far from the heart of my
                        role as a school librarian, but still, the question was irresistible.

                        So, book people, forgive me for this brief classification digression:

                        940 is general history of Europe.
                        The official Library of Congress Dewey number for The Wall is 943.704092
                        943 is Central Europe
                        .704 is the Czech Republic and Slovakia from 1945-1992 (cool, huh?)
                        092 I believe refers to a personal biographical type of work

                        Jill

                        ---
                        Jill Detweiler Clemens
                        Windrush School Library
                        1800 Elm Street
                        El Cerrito, CA 94530
                        ---

                        --- In middle_school_lit@yahoogroups.com, "kerleybarbara" <barbara@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > "Clare O'Callaghan" wrote:
                        >
                        > > I put it in the 940's along with his Tibet: through the red box.
                        >
                        > Oh, interesting. Excuse my ignorance, but I'm not very up on Dewey
                        > numbers -- what does the 940 signify?
                        >
                        > >I then need to hand sell them to the older kids.
                        >
                        > By older, you mean how old? Have you heard back from kids who have
                        > read The Wall? What do they think?
                        >
                        > The reason I'm asking is it really is innovative in structure--which
                        > intrigues me (it certainly doesn't seem like the kind of book you
                        > could read aloud to a classroom, tho I may be wrong and if any
                        > teachers have tried this, I'd be curious to hear how they did it) and
                        > also, a lot of the content is not about things that a typical middle
                        > schooler might be familiar with, so I guess I'm wondering (it's hard
                        > for me to tell, being 47 myself!) how kids react to it in a solitary
                        > reading.
                        >
                        > > What I find most frustrating about really good non-fiction picture
                        > type books, it that they often get short shrift from teachers who
                        > assign books that must be at least 100 pages..
                        >
                        > Yes, I agree with this!
                        >
                        > Thanks for your thoughts, Clare.
                        >
                        > Barb Kerley
                        > barbara@...
                        >
                      • kerleybarbara
                        ... reluctantly though ... from the heart of my ... irresistible. ... 943.704092 ... Wow, that is cool -- so the Dewey keeps adapting as new countries are
                        Message 11 of 12 , Dec 6, 2007
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                          Jill wrote:

                          > The Dewey Decimal question brought me out of lurking, somewhat
                          reluctantly though
                          > because I realize my extreme geeky pleasure in the numbers is far
                          from the heart of my
                          > role as a school librarian, but still, the question was
                          irresistible.
                          >
                          > So, book people, forgive me for this brief classification
                          digression:
                          >
                          > 940 is general history of Europe.
                          > The official Library of Congress Dewey number for The Wall is
                          943.704092
                          > 943 is Central Europe
                          > .704 is the Czech Republic and Slovakia from 1945-1992 (cool, huh?)
                          > 092 I believe refers to a personal biographical type of work

                          Wow, that is cool -- so the Dewey keeps adapting as new countries are
                          formed? You're like my mom (a retired librarian), Jill -- she loves
                          the Dewey system as well.

                          It's fascinating to me how different fields of endeavor have their
                          own 'vocabulary', so to speak. When I look at a set of blueprints
                          that my husband, an engineer, brings home from work, I only
                          understand a fraction of what's printed on the page... And a few
                          years back, when I was building my (very!) rudimentary web page from
                          scratch (with help from a book for techno 'dummies' like myself), I
                          realized one day that I could actually read a bit of html code. I
                          felt like an archeologist suddenly discovering that she could
                          decipher an obscure text.

                          I sat next to a librarian at a dinner a few years ago, who told me
                          about a weeding session she had just attended. It took me a second
                          to realize that she wasn't referring to dandelions. I thought, what
                          a perfect term to describe culling the shelves.

                          Yikes, I think I'm revealing my geekiness as well -- a fascination
                          for how we use language and symbols to capture ideas...

                          OK, back to work for us both!

                          Barb Kerley
                          barbara@...
                        • Clare O'Callaghan
                          Is there a good kid bio of old Melvil Dewey? Maybe it s his time... Clare O Callaghan
                          Message 12 of 12 , Dec 13, 2007
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                            Is there a good kid bio of old Melvil Dewey?   Maybe it’s his time…..

                             

                            Clare O'Callaghan

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