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Tournament of Books: The FINALS!

After a week of furious reading and voting, over 300 students and teachers cast their votes in the Final Four of the tourney.  The results:

  • The Lemonade War defeated Three Times Lucky 63% to 37% with 190 votes
  • Wonder defeated The Lightning Thief 60% to 40% with 265 votes

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The 2015 finals are set: THE LEMONADE WAR vs WONDER.  Should be a good matchup!  Vote HERE through Friday, April 3! In case you wondered – students could vote for ANY book if they had read it, which is why the voting numbers are skewed.  Some teachers have read aloud both Wonder and Three Times Lucky, which drove readers to vote.

Read-Aloud Tuesday: 03.31.15

read-aloud-tuesdayWelcome! On Read-Aloud Tuesday, I read to the Maple classroom at my son’s Montessori school to students ages 3-6.  Young readers are demanding and honest: I strive to share the best of children’s literature with them each week.

stellas-starlinerStella’s Starliner by Rosemary Wells

Stella lives in a silver Starliner on the side of the road.  She loves it’s coziness and her life there, until unkind comments from group of weasels leave her heart stinging.  She doesn’t want to tell Mama – that’ll only hurt her heart, too.  It’s when Daddy comes home and drives the Starliner to the beach that Stella meets new friends who appreciate the awesomeness of mobile living.  Wells takes a sensitive subject and writes with a deft, knowing touch.  Highly recommended.  NEW in 2014.

looking-for-a-mooseLooking for a Moose by Phyllis Root

A group of kids are on the hunt for a moose – they’ve never seen one, but they have some ideas of what one looks like and where it could be hiding.  Each place they go – the forest, the swamp, the bushes, the mountains – they’re faced with the fact that there are no moose…or are there?  Careful observers will spy the moose hiding in plain sight and may just realize that there is not just one moose to be found.  Expect lots of repeat readings looking for evidence of moose!

hoot-owl-master-of-disguiseHoot Owl: Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor

In the dark of night, Hoot Owl is on a mission: he is hungry and wants to eat.  And while owls are clever, they’re also masters of disguise.  A natural carnivore, he first spies a young rabbit and dresses as a carrot to con it closer.  It doesn’t work.  No matter – Hoot Owl tries again: he disguises himself as a mother sheep and an ornamental birdbath to similar, less-than-stellar results.  FInally, spying a pizza – pepperoni, of course – Hoot Owl’s waiter costume proves he is a master of disguise!  Droll humor with bold, rich illustrations make this a winner for the preschool / elementary crowd.  NEW in 2015.

Read-Aloud Tuesday: 03.24.15


Welcome! On Read-Aloud Tuesday, I read to the Maple classroom at my son’s Montessori school to students ages 3-6.  Young readers are demanding and honest: I strive to share the best of children’s literature with them each week.

lousy-rotten-stinkin-grapesLousy Rotten Stinking Grapes by Margie Palatini

Spying a tantalizing bunch of grapes hanging just out of his reach, Fox – sly, clever, smart – devises a plan to get them down.  Bear, Possum, Porcupine and others are recruited to help Fox with his plan.  When they attempt to share alternatives to Fox’s increasingly complicated plan, they’re shut down with a “tsk-tsk-tsk-tsk-tsk”.  After all, he is sly, clever, smart! Teamwork and open-mindedness is celebrated in this fable-like story.

supertruck-stephen-savageSupertruck by Stephen Savage

Trucks are the most important part of the town.  They fight fires, tow cars, and come to the rescue.  Lowly Garbage Truck, though, is overlooked…until the day of the big snow storm.  That’s when Garbage Truck goes to the local garage, puts on his snowplow attachment, and rescues all the other stranded trucks.  Short and sweet with bold illustrations, this is a standout for young transportation-loving children.  New in 2015!

book-Cat-SecretsCat Secrets by

Three cats come across a book titled “Cat Secrets”.  Ready to read its contents, they insist that all non-cats leave.  Suspicious that there are still non-cats around, they have the audience perform cat-like actions. Careful observers notice that the humans aren’t the only non-cats in attendance: a clever mouse is also trying to get the book!  After instructing the audience to meow, purr, stretch and nap like a cat, the three cats end up taking a nap…allowing the mouse to attain his prize.  This interactive book begs to be read aloud to a group!

Read-Aloud Tuesday: 03.17.15

read-aloud-tuesdayWelcome! On Read-Aloud Tuesday, I read to the Maple classroom at my son’s Montessori school to students ages 3-6.  Young readers are demanding and honest: I strive to share the best of children’s literature with them each week.


Flight School by Lita Judge

Little Penguin wants to fly.  Seems simple, except that penguins cannot fly.  He doesn’t let this fact stop him, creatively challenging the norms of science to achieve his dream.  Showcasing the importance of determination and friendship, this story shines.  The zinger of an ending (Penguin bringing Ostrich to school) doesn’t hurt, either.


Henny by Elizabeth Rose Stanton

Henny’s different: she has arms instead of wings.  Some days this is a good thing: she can point, hail a taxi, and hold an umbrella.  Other days, though, she wishes she was more like the rest of the brood.  Being different is never easy, but Henny’s honest reactions to the challenges make this a winner.


The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordicai Gerstein

The true story of Philippe Petit, the young tightrope walker who strung a wire between the unfinished World Trade Center towers and walked across it in 1974.  With neither proper permission or a safety net, Petit knelt, lay upon, and bounced thousands of feet above NYC for over an hour in the opportunity of a lifetime.  A magical story to read aloud.  Highly recommended…as is this news video of the event:

Tournament of Books: Round 3!

The excitement of the bracket has taken over, with over 200 students (and a handful of teacher) voting this week.

Voting was VERY tight, especially between Three Times Lucky and Have a Hot Time, Hades!  But…moving on to the Final Four:

The updated Book Brackets:


Students, you can vote using the link in our Destiny catalog or using this link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/622PRRD

ALSO, there’s a chance to bring back a previously outed book.  Vote for your favorite book that didn’t make the Final Four in the survey.  Happy Voting!

2015 Tournament of Books: Round 2!

WOW! Over 100 students and teachers voted in Round 1 of the ToB!  Impressive, considering it was a short week at school.


Students were excited to see the books in the bracket and pumped to vote.  Interestingly, the bracket increased circulation for students who hadn’t read the titles!

Watching the voting was like watching a football game: the leaderboard kept flip-flopping, especially between 11 Birthdays and The Lightning Thief.  Here are the books moving on to Round 2!

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Round 2 is now LIVE.  Vote using the link in Destiny or HERE: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/RLFPX8D

Vote today!

Round 1 begins!

This morning, Round 1 of voting kicks off for our Tournament of Books.

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So excited to see which books make it through to the next round!

Students, you can vote during library class OR at home using this link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/WJBBKL3

And like most brackets, I’m making a prediction on which book I think will win – it’s in THIS ENVELOPE.  Check back on April 3 to see if I’m right!