I challenged my fifth graders to read two books over spring break. And I can't issue a challenge without taking part- so here's where I traveled (figuratively) the past week......
After finishing Because of Mr Terupt as a class before break, I had to read the sequel Mr. Terupt Falls Again during break. So, I spent the beginning of the week back in Snow Hill School with the best teacher ever- Mr. Terupt. I relived the excitement and heartbreak of sixth grade from the perspectives of Jessica, Peter, Anna, Danielle, Lexie, Jeffrey, and Luke as they struggled with love, loss, renewal, and adolescent milestones. It brought me back to my own days of hiding under the covers reading Are You There God? It's Me Margaret, and rejoicing in the knowledge that other sixth graders were as confused and awkward as me. And as Jessica loves a happy ending, this book doesn't disappoint.
Toward the end of the week I picked up the Great Unexpected by Sharon Creech and traveled back in time to Blackbird Tree where two orphan girls, Naomi and Lizzie are surrounded by curious surprises during a childhood summer full of climbing trees and chores. Across the ocean, an old lady is cooking up a plan that unexpectedly connects the characters, and teaches great lessons of friendship and forgiveness.
Both reads were recommended to me by students and I can't wait to share them with the rest of the class when we return from break, yikes, tomorrow!
Lastly, I'm linking up with Collaboration Cuties for their mentor text linky party. The focus this week is language arts so I'm sharing one of my favorite mentor texts that I use to discuss "ideas" in writing workshop. The book is titled Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street. It is about the power of observation as an author. The main character is assigned to write in her writer's notebook, but she cannot come up with any ideas so she begins to write about what's happening on her street. One thing leads to another and she spins a fabulous tale out of nothing. It's an inspiring read with strategies that can be referred to throughout the year when writers struggle with finding the "right" idea.
Check it out!
Good night all! I guess have to admit that my spring break is really ending.........