News from the Library–Oct.8, 2012


Spider Detectives


This week fourth graders became Spider Detectives and found information about spiders in an attempt to quell some of their fears about the eight-legged critters.  After seeing a Keynote presentation about spiders, they formed teams of 2 and drew the name of a spider out of the hat.  Using books instead of the internet, the focused their search for information about what their spider looks like, where it lives, what it likes to eat, and 5 other interesting facts.  We practiced a visible thinking routine called I Used to Think and Now I Think and many of them decided not to routinely squish spiders when the see them now!


Also in the Library this week…..


Kindergarten–Kindergarteners practiced the thinking routine called Plot Prediction while listening to Steven Kroll’s, The Biggest Pumpkin Ever.  Two little mice both want a huge pumkpkin and unbeknownst to each other, they both water and care  for the same pumpkin.  Needless to say with double the water and food, the pumpkin becomes enormous.  One wanted it for the town pumpkin contest.  The other for a jack 0’lantern.  In a great example of compromise, they work it out so the pumpkin not only wins the contest but becomes a huge jack o’ lantern for Halloween night.  The story provides a wonderful starting point for a discussion about sharing and compromise.

First Grade–Working with the thinking routine Fact or Fantasy, first graders listened to Mariko Shinju’s charming book, Pumpkin Story.  We discussed the things that might be true and the things that couldn’t be true even though we wished they were.  A pumpkin hotel with a pumpkin swimming pool was the favorite in the latter category!  We even had a chance to carve out own virtual pumpkins on our iPad with a great free app from Parents Magazine.  You can get it at the App Store.  Search for Carve-a-Pumpkin from Parents Magazine.

Second Grade–Second graders loved hearing Helen Cooper’s Pumpkin Soupand practiced the thinking routine called Fluttering Feelings.  They watched how the character’s feelings changed from the beginning of the story to the end of the story.  The lush illustrations make this a perfect read aloud and serve as a springboard for interesting discussions.  They also had a chance to carve some virtual pumpkins.

Third Grade–One of my favorite books to read around Halloween is Chris VanAllsburg’s The Widow’s Broom.  Just creepy enough for third graders, it gave them a chance predict what was going to happen and the ending surprised them all at first.  The language is sumptuous and the grey and white illustrations a perfect complement.  A great book on all levels!

Fourth Grade–see opening post

Fifth Grade–This week Fifth Graders brought their laptops to the LIbrary and practiced how to get out of an inappropriate website.  Web Drill is a lesson on our Library Skills Blog and after seeing a Keynote presentation about several ways to get out of a website, they went to blog and then to pre-selected websites (appropriate, of course) and began enjoying them.  Randomly, I call out “Web Drill!” and they have to use one of the methods we discussed.  We do this several times so they can practice all the methods.  The point of the lesson is that they need to become their own “firewall” or “filter” and they have the tools to take the responsibility.  The lesson is on the Skills Blog at this link:

Sixth Grade–Sixth Graders had a great trip to PALI this week.

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