It's Monday! What are you reading? was started by Sheila at Book Journey and was adapted for children's books from pictures books through YA by Jen of Teacher Mentor Texts and Kellee of Unleashing Readers. You can visit either site for a round up of blogs sharing their weekly readings and thoughts or search Twitter for #IMWAYR.
"Where does our food come from?" is a huge topic. This book series introduces individual foods and other agricultural products with their own biographies. You can read how I am using this series with my students in this week's post on Teaching about the Geography of Food.
Peanut Butter and Jellyfish by Jarrett Krosoczka. This story of friendship, bullying and doing what is right revolves around two friends, Peanut Butter (a sea horse) and Jellyfish, and Crabby, their cranky neighbor. This story could foster discussion among kids about bullying but also about what can happen when friendships become exclusive. Cute illustrations too. (H/T Linda at Teacher Dance.)
The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein, illustrated by Mark Pett. Perfectionism can be a big deal for some kids, and this book tackles the idea head on (but perhaps a bit too exaggeratedly). Beatrice has become known as "the girl who never makes mistakes" and seems to do everything right. But as the story progresses, it becomes clear that this is holding her back from trying new things. I wish that her eventual mistake could have been something a little more normal, but at least it communicates the idea that a mistake is not the end of the world. Still undecided about whether I will share this one with my students.
Dear Wandering Wildebeest by Irene Latham. Wonderful new poetry and nonfiction resource about Africa, inspired by the animals found around a water hole in Kenya. Read my full review at New Book Alert: Dear Wandering Wildebeest.
El Deafo by Cece Bell. This sensitive autobiographical graphic novel focuses on the author's experience growing up and losing her hearing at age 4, as well as her later trials and tribulations with her gigantic Phonic Ear. I think the graphic novel format (and rabbits for characters) makes this book accessible to a wide-range of readers. A great book for talking about differences and how to treat others.
New Book Alert: The Doll People Set Sail by Ann M, Martin and Laura Godwin and illustrated by Brett Helquist (publication date is Oct. 14, 2014). This fourth book in the Doll People series adds illustrator Brett Helquist to replace Brian Selznik, but the book loses none of the charm or creativity of the original three. Read my full review here.