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Archive for July, 2011

Being a former school librarian and district supervisor, I was particularly interested in this article about the new library at Red Hawk Elementary School in St. Vrain Valley School District in Colorado. The library is abandoning the Dewey Decimal System for a word-based classification system like the one used in the bookstores.
I do recall a principal in my district years ago that told me he was going to re-organize the library this way. I was able to stop him at the time, but I wonder if I could now.

I do see some pros for doing this. In recent weeks, I have posted about reluctant readers. Maybe organizing books by category would increase circulation. I do remember in my middle school library I pulled books and put them in special locations because the kids wanted to read specific topics or themes. And I do recall that circulation increased when I did that. But do we really want to abandon the Dewey Decimal System?
What do you think?

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From the Mixed-Up Files…has a great post today about Understanding the Middle Grade Reluctant Reader. Be sure to give it a read.

It made me think about my time in my educational career when I was a librarian in a middle school. Our school district at the time had very low standardized reading scores,and most of the students had to take an extra class of reading. Unfortunately, most of the kids thought that since they had to take the class they must not be able to read…when actually it was a standardized test comprehension problem. They could read! I spent many hours ordering just the right books and working with the students to find books they wanted to read.

Read my post from March 7 about one of my experiences getting my students to read.

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Research shows that reading drops off as children get older…and this is especially true of teens.
Get your teen reading this summer. Don’t know what to recommend?
Here’s a good list from the Fifth Annual Beach Bag of Books Feature from Teenreads.com.

Don’t forget the SYNC/YA Listening Program mentioned in my May 24 post.

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AOL has a daily video series called “You’ve Got…” that features well-known people talking about topics that are passionate to them.
James Patterson has a video clip about his passion to get kids reading. And he doesn’t put the whole burden on schools. He places the burden on parents.

Take a look at his website, READKIDDOREAD.com that is dedicated to lifetime reading for kids.

Read his best-selling new book for kids Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life about Rafe who enters middle school and teams up with his best friend to create a game to make school more fun by trying to break every rule in the school’s code of conduct.
Use the Educator’s Guide for curriculum ideas and discussion questions.

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Are you ready to see the newest Harry Potter movie? I’m headed for the theater this weekend.

If you need to catch up with what has happened in the previous films, then watch this:

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Today, being the birthday of Brian Selznick, gives me the opportunity to share some information about one of my favorite books and authors.

Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret received oodles of awards and recognitions including the 2008 Caldecott Medal, finalist for the 2007 National Book Awards in the Young People’s Literature category, and a 2007 New York Times Ten Best Illustrated Books of the Year.
Told through a combination of text and black and white charcoal sketches, the book is about twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living and repairing clocks within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931. When he meets a mysterious toyseller, Papa Georges, and his goddaughter Isabelle, his undercover life and his biggest secret are jeopardized.

In December, a movie based on the book and simply titled Hugo will be released…who knows why they changed the name? So far, no trailer has not been released, but I’m sure it will be soon. The movie directed by Martin Scorsese will be in 3D with the cast of Asa Butterfield, Chloe Moretz, Sacha Baron Cohen, Ben Kingsley and Jude Law.

Teaching Resources
Official Book Website
Discussion Questions
Teaching Unit
WebQuest
Video of the author talking about the book

The Linda’s Links to Literature database has 25+ links to book-related teaching resources for this book.

Brian Selznick’s newest book Wonderstruck will be released later this year. Can’t wait to read it! Watch the new video to see him talk about the book and show the wonderful illustrations.

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Happy Birthday to Joan Bauer!
If you’re planning an author study for the next school year or arranging a teen book club, then Joan Bauer is a great choice.
Her characters face complicated family problems, but her books are sprinkled with humor to lighten up the story.

A Few Teaching Resources:

Author Information

Book Resources

These are just a few of the 50+ book-related resources for titles by Joan Bauer on the Linda’s Links to Literature website.

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