Saturday

Sweet Home Alaska by Carole Estby Dagg - Book Review

Sweet Home Alaska
If good historical fiction is supposed to make us wonder about the people who lived during various points in history, then Sweet Home Alaska is certainly good. It had me, instantly upon closing the last page at 1:00 am, researching the Matanuska Valley Colony. I don’t have a vast knowledge of Roosevelt’s New Deal specifics, I just know that the vestiges can be seen in our public spaces and government programs.

Tuesday

A Word About Authentic Texts Used As Mentor Texts

Authentic Texts Are Best!
It occurred to me today that I assume those        reading my ramblings on Reading Rumpus simply know how to use authentic literature as mentor texts. That was an assumption I made whilst teaching preservice teachers last year - and it was a poor one. Therefore, I thought I should spend a moment talking about selecting authentic literature for instructional use and how most of my full book reviews (not the mini-reviews) include some sort of authentic text teaching ideas, even if I haven't explained HOW to use them as such.

Thursday

SumoKitty written and illustrated by David Biedrzycki

“Fall down seven times; get up eight” is one of many witty quotes that highlight the central theme of SumoKitty written and illustrated by David Biedrzycki. Written as an ode to tenacity, SumoKitty is both witty and instructive for young folks facing adversity. The humor is subtle, played out through a big, strong sumo wrestler being afraid of mice while his friend, the Kitty, gets a little too comfortable, forgetting the job of a cat.

Between humor and wit, SumoKitty is a tale completely filled with new vocabulary opportunities, both English and Japanese. Children will love learning all the Japanese sumo wrestling terms while expanding their English vocabulary. Contractions are a prominent feature within the written structure and offer older children a chance to practice their usage.