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Archive for December, 2011

Since most of our school subscribers will be celebrating away from school until next year, we will not be posting on our blog again until January.
We hope you’ll enjoy celebrating with family and friends.

From all of us at Linda’s Links to Literature

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Very Happy New Year!

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YALSA has announced the finalists for the Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults.
The award honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults (ages 12-18).

The finalists are:

All Amazon links are affiliate links for Linda’s Links to Literature.


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  • Did colonial homes have Christmas trees?
  • Where are Christmas trees grown?
  • When did people started using aluminum Christmas trees?

Find the answers on this visual guide to the history of the Christmas tree.

Here’s a few books about Christmas trees with book-related teaching resources.
Search our database for more titles and teaching links.

Chita’s Christmas Tree by Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard
Papa and Chita leave downtown Baltimore in a buggy to find a Christmas tree in the deep woods.
Teaching Unit

The Christmas Tree Ship by Jeanette Winter
Each winter Captain Herman fills his fishing schooner with Christmas trees, sails down Lake Michigan, and delivers the trees to the residents of Chicago.
Lesson Plan

Christmas Trees by Robert Frost
A poem about Christmas trees.
Discussion Guide

Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas by Jane O’Connor
Nancy is devastated, which is even worse than heart-broken, when her fancy Christmas tree topper breaks, threatening to ruin Christmas.
Activity Guide

The Fir Tree by Hans Christian Andersen
The life of a little fir tree who, when discarded, recalls with nostalgia its two glorious moments–being a beautiful fir and being a brightly-lit Christmas tree.
Study Guide

Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree by Robert Barry
Mr. Willowby’s Christmas tree is too tall, so he trims off the top and gives the top to the upstairs maid for her tree, and she finds it too tall, so she cuts off the top, which the gardener uses for his tree, but it is too tall.
Reader’s Theater

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YALSA has announced five books as finalists for the 2012 William C. Morris Award, which honors a book written for young adults by a previously unpublished author. The 2012 winner will be announced in January at the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in Dallas.

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December Newsletter

The December issue of the Linda’s Links to Literature newsletter is now available.

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The surprise military attack on Pearl Harbor by the Japanese occurred on the morning of December 7, 1941.
Integrate cross-curricular reading next week with some of these books from our database.

Book-Related Teaching Links:

  • Attack on Pearl Harbor: The True Story of the Day America Entered World War II by Shelley Tanaka (Gr. 4-8)  Lesson Plan
  • A Boy at War by Harry Mazer (Gr. 5-9)  Reader’s Theater
  • Early Sunday Morning: The Pearl Harbor Diary of Amber Billows, Hawaii, 1941 (Dear America series) by Barry Denenberg (Gr. 4-7)  Discussion Guide
  • Pearl Harbor Is Burning! by Kathleen V. Kudlinsky (Gr. 2-5)  Teacher Guide
  • Under the Blood-Red Sun by Graham Salisbury (Gr. 5-9)  Book Discussion Guide

Teaching Resources:

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Hugo (based on The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick) premiered late last month. If your students haven’t seen the film, perhaps they will over the holidays.

The film focuses on twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living and repairing clocks within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931. Before he died, Hugo’s father had discovered an automaton in a museum where he worked. Hugo becomes obsessed with learning the secret of this human-like figure. When he meets a mysterious toyseller Papa Georges and his goddaughter Isabelle, his undercover life and his biggest secret are jeopardized.

The book has won numerous awards and recognitions including the 2008 Caldecott Medal and the American Library Association’s Notable Children’s Book and Best Book for Young Adults.

Movie Resources

Book-Related Teaching Resources

The Linda’s Links to Literature database has 30+ links to book-related teaching resources for this book.

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