Monday, February 21, 2011


For a phonics strategies class I'm in, one of the projects we do is to read a young adult or older children's book and do a "book talk" on it. The "book talk" part is simply giving a brief "preview" of the book...without giving too much away. The goal is to learn to make books sound exciting (which they are) and to read books that the kid's we will be teaching could read.

I chose Hoot, and I have to say I liked. It's sort of a series of hilarious mysteries that are all connected and stacked on top of one another.By the time you feel that one mystery is "solved" your knee deep into the next. It begins with Roy, the main character being beat up by the school bully on the bus. His face is smushed against the glass of the window. It's at this point that Roy notices a boy running. Not just any boy though. He had no shoes, no books, and was running in the opposite direction of the school bus stop. Roy immediately sets out to find out who the running boy is and from there, the mysteries only begin. By the end you'll find out what an owl, nine snakes, an alligator, a bulldozer, a police car, and pancakes all have in common and you'll laugh a lot along the way.

I liked it. It made me laugh. In a few places it was actually a little too....political(?) for me, which surprised me for a book written for 12 years olds, but as whole it was great.

Whatever I think of the book though, I love this idea of book talks, and plan on using it in my classroom someday. We not only have to talk about the book, but we have to create a website, or use props, or do something visual.

The second book I've been reading isn't school related at all (clearly)-- The Knitter's Book of Yarn by Clara Parkes. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this book. It's everything you could want to know about yarn, choosing it, using for the right projects, where it comes from, how it's made, and more. It comes with some 40 patterns that are all beautiful. Some are above my skill level, but I'll get there...someday.

Perhaps its interesting to me because I love wool, yarn, and all fiber related topics, but I would venture to say that even to someone who may not have a natural affinity for yarn could find her style and content interesting.

My favorite part is when she talks about fiber festivals (yes, that's a real thing...all the knitting nerds really do all together at one time, I'll post on that sometime soon). She refers to them as "Woodstock, for knitters". I love this!

"Read it. I know you'll love it!" (Name that movie) But really, do read it.

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