Tuesday, July 24, 2012

First Day of School titles- suggested titles

  1. Cam Jansen and the First Day of School by David Adler
  2. Miss Nelson is Missing by Harry Allard
  3. Junior goes to School by Samantha Berger
  4. Arthur's back-to-school surprise by Marc Brown
  5. Look out kindergarten, Here I come!  by Nancy Carlson
  6. First Graders from Mars by Shana Corey
  7. Sam starts school by Barbara Cook
  8. A fine, fine school by Sharon Creech
  9. First day jitters by Julie Danneberg
  10. Get ready for second grade, Amber Brown by Paula Danzinger
  11. Wimberly Worried by Kevin Henkes
  12. Off to school, Baby Duck by Amy Hest
  13. Froggy goes to school by Jonathon London
  14. Judy Moody by Megan McDonald
  15. Moses goes to school by Issac Millman
  16. When an elephant goes to school by Jan Ormerod
  17. Little Cliff's first day of school by Clifton Taulbert
  18. Llama llama misses mama  by Anna Dewdney
  19. Talking hands at school (en la escuela) Kathleen Petelinsck
  20. It's your first day of school, Annie Claire by Jan Ormerod
More to come

Tracy : )

Saturday, June 30, 2012

First Week Book List Coming!

Hi, this is Tracy again. I am working on getting a list of book titles that are perfect for the first day and first week of school. There are some really good ones out there. Your local libraries have plenty of them, but they will be checked out fast with the first day of school approaching in August. Stay tuned for a list. I will include titles, authors, and author websites if available. If you are wondering what the book levels are, you can go to www.arbookfind.com to look up book titles and you will see what the grade level is for the book if available.

Happy reading,


Children's Librarian and Michelle's friend

A Winner!!!!

Just popping in to announce the winner of the Whatif Monster.

Congratulations  Miss Trayers at NotJustChild'sPlay!

Also, here is something fun that I grabbed from Pinterest.  Dr. Seuss is one of my all time favorites!  I love what is at the bottom:

Dr. Seuss baby, Dr. Seuss!

Keep Reading,

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Whatif Monster

Just one more day until someone wins the the Whatif Monster. Looks like it's going to be an easy choice, unless someone leaves a comment. :)

Here's a link to the book

and a review I pulled from Facebook, written by Tabatha Miller Roach. This says it all!

"What a universal message for ages 2 to 100...don't let the fear of 'whatif' stand in your way of doing something you really want to do! WHATIF you DO go for your dreams and they are even better than you imagined?! A must have in every home & library...and I am so in love with Michelle Nelson-Schmidt's artwork in this book, she has created a masterpiece!!"

  Click here for a video of the author reading the story.

Keep Reading,

Monday, June 25, 2012

Meeting an Author

Last week, Tracy had an author visit as part of her Summer Reading Program.  We went and had such a great time!  I think it may be the first time I've met a children's author and I know it's the first time I've had a chance to talk with one.  Pretty exciting for me.  :)

Sorry for the blurry picture.  I was standing in the back of the room as she was presenting. 

I was blown away by Michelle Neslon-Schmidt.  She is a fantastic artist and brought lots of pictures (portraits?) to her presentation.  The kids loved them!  She is also very inspirational and such an encourager.  This is one smart lady.  She was going to school for physics and math, was doing great, but it wasn't her dream.  She followed that dream and now she is living a "magical" life.  She spoke about how it wasn't easy and she almost give up, but kept going...... she had lots of rejection, but it only took one "yes" to change her life.

She has 2 children's books published (along with some coloring and drawing books).  They are Dogs, Dogs! and Cats, Cats!  Both of these books are great.  I can't wait to use them in my classroom.

 They are fairly short and are written in rhyme.  I think these would be perfect to use with a writing lesson about stretching sentences out and using describing words.  They also have some great vocabulary words (shaggy, stubborn, timid, nosy).  Every child I know can identify with cats and dogs.  Even if they don't have one, they probably know someone who does.  The very last page on each book is a mirror page where they can describe themselves.  I know these are going to be a hit with my kiddos!

"Shaggy dog, shaggy dog, with so much hair. 
Do you really have eyes under there?"
"Timid cat, timid cat, under the bed, 
Won't you come out, even to be fed?"
"Little girl, little boy
reading this book. 

Which dog are you like? 
Take a look!"

The illustrations and lettering are so fun! 

Here's a review from the School Library Journal-
"Text set against plenty of white space, with a few sophisticated words to challenge youngsters, make these good choices for emerging readers. The bright, crisp illustrations are cheerful and attractive and will call out to children who want to look at playful pictures of cats and dogs. These books are also useful as introductions to adjectives, with the art adroitly reinforcing the texts. All in all, these are versatile titles that should find a home in most collections."

WAIT!  There's more!!! Today is the release of her newest book,  Jonathan James and the Whatif Monster.  She read this book during her presentation last week and it adorable.  Briefly, it is about self doubt and fear.  Who doesn't doubt themselves and get scared?  Jonathtan James finally makes peace with the Whatif Monster and turns doubt around.  Stay tuned.....I'll be back with a better review and some more pictures when I can get my hands on the book.


Mrs. Schmidt believes in herself and the Whatif Monster.  She designed the monster and had some made.  (You need to hop on over to her blog and read about it here). Now, from what I understand the publisher is also making a Whatif Monster, but this one is a limited edition author designed and autographed original!  Each of my girls got one and Mrs. Schmidt was so kind as to give me one to share.... so let's have a giveaway!  All you need to do is become a follower and leave a comment.  The drawing will be done Friday night.  Also, you should really should check out her blog here and/ or follow her on Facebook.  Just to give you a tiny taste here's her copyright warning.... "all this is mine, please don't steal. it's not nice and will make your mama sad" that just that cracked me up!

Holding the Whatif Monster

Here's the one you could win

See, he's autographed (she also initialed the tiny tag on his bum!)....
aren't you impressed?  :)  

Soooooo.... become a follower, leave a comment and he could be yours! 

Keep Reading, 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Frugal Finds

I wanted to share a few goodies I have been picking up here and there.  There's nothing earth shattering here, just what works for me.  :)  My first little frugal find is getting books at yard sales.  Now, I realize yard sales aren't for everyone, but you can find great bargains out there! I am able to go more in the summer, than during the school year.  I love it when the stars line up just right and my sister and I can go together.  It's more fun with someone else, and she can really spot some bargains!  I am always on the look out for books and let me tell you.... I find great children's books.

 A couple of weeks ago I picked these up for a dime each!  That's 70 cents ya'll!  I can barely buy a coke for that! I love picking up books because 1) I am able to build my library  2) It's not quite so bad when a book tears up (as they eventually do) and I know paid very little for it 3) If I end up with multiple copies, it  allows me to generous and share with others  4) Most people love to know a teacher is buying them and lots of time they will give you a really good deal, so strike up a conversation!  :)   and 5) You never know what you are going to find.... It's like a treasure hunt!  I have bought lots of different things for my classroom.  Another favorite is using flashcards to make ring books.  I find all kind of great things at yard sales, but I'm trying to stick to school related items here.  :)

I also popped in the dollar tree and picked up a couple of goodies for my class.  I am going to make the cute birthday balloons I have seen all over blog land.  I have seen different versions, but a straw (6 for $1), a little construction paper and you have a cute treat.  I love how colorful and fun these straws are! Here's a picture from Kindergarten Rocks. She has tons of great ideas.  I really like this one because it is a no sugar alternative to the jumbo pixie sticks. Be sure to check out her if you aren't familiar with her blog.  You will not be sorry!

I also found some birthday crowns.  These are pretty self-explanatory.  I am actually pretty impressed with the teaching/ classroom section of the Dollar Tree.  It may not be the highest quality, but not everything has to be..... depends on what you are using it for.

Moving on, this is not a bargain but it is definitely a great idea!  I was over at Growing Kinders  the other day and she shared how she organizes math stations and literacy centers. I love it when someone else figures it all out .  I haven't gotten a good system going for my station storage yet, so this is perfect.  (Click over to check out the entire post.)  I LOVE IT!!!


 All of the containers are not going to be cheap, but as I was reading through the comments someone said you can buy the these at Dollar General for a little bit cheaper than Target (only about 50 cents in my area).  However, you can get a $5 off $25 coupon on your receipt when you buy anything (like a pack of gum).  Use this coupon to buy your containers and it helps out a little bit...... and every little bit counts!

Finally, another favorite place for bargains is the Dollar Spot at Target (Our Walmart has a similar section now, but not as big).  I love to pick up cute note cards and they should be putting out school stuff soon.  I always check it out.

I love hearing about good deals others have found, so share yours!

I am linking up with Primary Possibilities.

Keep Reading,

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


I am Tracy, Michelle's friend and her librarian. I am so excited to be joining in on the blogging adventure. I've been a children's librarian for almost 9 years and love it. I love encouraging kids to read books and to find books about their favorite subjects and topics. Of course, I have always loved to read. I'm the kid that mom had to tell to put the book away and go to bed! Now that I am a mom of 2 children (3 if you count my husband). I encourage my kids to read everyday and to read for fun. Reading is fun and learning is fun, too. I can't wait to continue this adventure with you all. Thanks Michelle for inviting me on this journey.
Tracy: mom, wife, children's librarian and reading enthusiast.