Summer Reading Book Haul

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Some of My Favorite Books Right Now

Sew Fab Sewing and Style for Young Fashionistas:
Author: Lesley Ware

ISBN-10: 178067404X
ISBN-13: 978-1780674049

Sew Fab is a great book about sewing, style, and designing. There are guides to help you pick your own style tribe, accessorize, and also how to choose your color palette. I love this book because I am really into fashion and clothes. One day I want to be able to use a sewing machine like my mom does to create pretty dresses and skirts to wear. There are also some really cool projects in the book, my favorite one is the After School Tote.

Another thing I love about the book is the illustrations. The pictures look like they are painted with watercolors and all of the girls in the book have on really cute outfits!  The colors are bright and pretty The girl on the cover has on Chuck’s and those are my favorite shoes. I sometimes use the book when my mom lets me pick my own outfits.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes fashion or wants to learn more about sewing. It has helped me out a lot!

Jem and the Holograms comics :
Author: Kelly Thompson and Sophia Campbell

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I love comic books!

I just  started reading the Jem and the Holograms comics a few weeks ago. I read all 4 comics in one day and have read My favorite part of comics are the illustrations because I want to be an author/illustrator one day. I have seen the Jem cartoon that my mom used to watch when she was a kid and I loved it!

In the comics the main character is Jerrica Benton but her secret identity is Jem. Jem has a girl band called Jem and the Holograms and they give concerts and help out kids with the Starlight Foundation. Jem has a computer named Synergy that helps her and her band transform and it is super cool! I like the Jem cartoons and comics because all of the stories have a lesson and a moral that I can learn.

I would recommend these comic books to anyone who likes music, brightly colored graphics, and comics. There are 11 books in the series plus a holiday special.

The Witches:
Author: Roald Dahl

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ISBN-10: 0590032496
ISBN-13: 978-0142410110

My teacher read this book to our class and I loved it so much, I had to read it myself. I want to read all of Roald Dahl’s books because the stories I have seen in movies were great, and I am sure the books are too!
The story is about 2 boys, the narrator and a boy named Bruno Jenkins, who meet some witches and get turned into mice. With the help of the narrators grandmother, they try to find away to turn back into boys and get back at the witches.
I like this book because it is very funny and creative. The funniest part of the book to me, was when the witches were at their meeting and The Grand High Witch told them all that they could remove their wigs, gloves, and shoes.
I would recommend this book to anyone who likes funny stories.

The Jigsaw Jones Mystery Books :
Author: James Preller

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I like these stories because they are funny and there are real mysteries to be solved. I like to watch NCIS, Sherlock,  and other mystery stories with my mom, but I don’t always understand what is going on. The Jigsaw Jones books are very kid friendly and easy to understand. Another thing I like, is that I can read the books easily in one day and still remember details.

The main character is Jigsaw Jones. He loves drinking grape juice and he has a dog named Rags. The story is written like Jigsaw is an actual detective and I like that a lot. It’s not just a kid trying to solve mysteries, he actually is really good at it. The book reminds me of Nancy Drew or Encyclopedia Brown.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes mystery stories.

Summer Learning


School has officially been out 3 full weeks and Rahni has been hitting it hard and I could not be more impressed with her! For the last 2 weeks we have been refreshing addition facts and working on the multiplication facts that she has not memorized (4, 6,7,8,9). So far we had to review multiplication facts of 3 for a full week and we just finished with 4’s so next week we will put factors of 6 into the mix. She is doing pretty good, I must say, and I think that her understanding that multiplication is just addition over and over (arrays)  makes things a lot easier. That is one thing that I am thankful for with Common Core. Just that one thing so far though. 🙂

As far as reading goes she dove head first into comics and graphic novels a couple years ago and has not looked back since! We recently made a trip to a couple of local comic book stores, The Book and Music Exchange and also The Great Escape and Rahni racked up! She seems to be pretty pschyed about The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, a new comic from Marvel that came out December 2014. She got the lastest copy #6 and now wants to get all of them, of course. Also, she got a few Chip n’ Dale Rescue Rangers which were pretty expensive considering how old and not so great they looked. I assume that these will only go up in value over the years so I feel pretty confident that the price was justified. Another favorite from her haul is Archie Comics Sabrina The Teenage Witch. From what I have researched the comics for this particular series originated in around 1971. We so far have been able to procure about 30 comics but there are several out there because there seems to be at least 3 different series she appears in not including the Little Archie series. Luckily, we were able to find a lot of the volumes available for digital download on the Archie Comic website for her to read, but our goal is to obtain more paper copies for her collection.

Although it’s been hard to tear her away from her comics she has also been making time for at least a chapter a day of Harry Potter and the Sorcer’s Stone (book 1). She is just now taking it seriously after us purchasing it about a year ago. I think she got discouraged because the words were complicated and some of the concepts were still foreign to her. What a difference a year makes! At my suggestion that she start the book over with new eyes, she started re reading it last week and has 2 chapters to go before she’s finished. Since she is swearing that she has never seen the movie Sorcere’s Stone, (which I know isn’t true because we own all the movies and I have watched them a million times)  I told her that if she finished the book and did the questions from this absolutely awesome guide that I found online, (which you can access here) that she and I would make a night of watching the movie and comparing it to what she’s read. I must confess, I am a bit more excited than she is.

I must say  that I had forgotten how great the books were! When I read them as an adult and it literally took me days to read each one because I was so enthralled with the story. While I did allow my imagination to do most of the work in Sorcer’s Stone, I will also admit that reading them became much easier after having character voices and faces along with landcsapes and visual refernces to use from the movies. Now, seeing it through her eyes and hearing her feedback, it’s almost like a new experience. I will definitely be reading book 2 with her. It’s funny because she says to me the other day, “it’s weird that Snape is a teacher because he seems like a bad guy or Harry Potter’s enemy.” I couldn’t say much for fear of ruining everything. Also, I want to hear and see her reaction once she puts everything together in the Deathly Hallows and see if she has more resolve not to cry like a blubbering idiot like myself and so many others did. Since she is my child, the chances of her not are pretty slim lol!

We don’t have much by the way of a reading list because our focus this summer is to read for comprehension and finding a deeper understanding and meaning in texts. Though she will always have free reading forever and always, her required reading this summer is just 2 books, Sorcerer’s Stone and Chamber of Secrets. I think that the relationships and scenarios are so complex in the Harry Potter books that we could literally spend endless amounts of time analyzing and discussing them. Also, the fact that she is really getting into them and is wanting to duscuss these things makes it that much more of a great opportunity now.

Even though we don’t have a summer reading list we would still LOVE to hear from you guys about what you’re reading and suggestions. Please email us or comment to let us know!

We’ll be posting soon about Read Aloud so stay tuned!

 

 

 

 

 

Junie B Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus Ch 4

We’re back!

This week Rahni reads us chapter 4 of Junie B Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus. We also discuss plans for a children’s book club and Rahni’s Minecraft accomplishments so far.

Thank you for listening and please feel free to subscribe and leave us a review on iTunes! We would greatly appreciate it!

 

Rahni’s Book Club

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I have been saying for months that I was going to start a children’s book club, and today, I finally did. I called the library and reserved a meeting room for our first official meeting. It will be in a month and now I have to invite people and find a book.
There is no particular age range for the club, but the books will be appropriate for kids aged 7 to about 10 just because I don’t want the books that we select to be too difficult or too easy. Since Rahni is 8 and most of the kids that I am going to invite are around her age give or take a couple years, this should hopefully work out. Of course we can always make adjustments as necessary.
Upon looking for our first book selection, I came across some very interesting books that I have never seen before. It seems like these days there is no shortage of books or authors for children to choose from. While representation of ethnic diversity is lacking in characters, today I have found, despite my initial thought, that there are a good amount of books that have both female and male main characters. Admittedly, I usually do not browse for books that boys specifically would be interested in because I don’t have a son. However, when we do go to book stores and libraries, I notice a lot more books with a lot more female protagonists.
When I asked two of my trusted mommy friends about books that both boys and girls would like, they both gave me 2 really good options; one being Sweet Farts series book #1 by Raymond Bean and the other was the Rotten School series book #1 by R.L. Stine.
I never knew the R.L .made any series outside of Goosebumps, so this came as a pleasant surprise to me. The series is not scary, but is funny, and has a good amount of the gross humor that kids tend to like. The first book is titled The Big Blueberry Barf-Off, if that tells you anything. I read excerpts from the book and it seems to be about a very annoying and bratty kid that challenges another kid that is just as bratty to a pie eating contest. It seems legitimately funny and there are short chapters and great illustrations.
Before today, I ashamed to say that I have never heard of author Raymond Bean. He writes children’s humor book series Sweet Farts and School is a Nightmare. He also has a series titles Benji Franklin that I absolutely fell in love with after reading an excerpt from book #1 Benji Franklin Kid Zillionaire. Benji is a child genius and inventor. He wins an award for one of his inventions and becomes the world’s first and only zillionaire. It is a book about creativity, imagination, and also good will. This is definitely a book that goes on our “to read” list.

These are some of the books that I think would be great options, some are newer and some are classics, either way  I think they all appeal to boys and girls.

Click the links after the photos for more info!

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The Magic Shop (series) by Kate Egan
Elray Jakes (series) by Sally Warner 
Club House Mysteries (series) by Sharon Draper   
Diary of a 6th Grade Ninja (series) by Marcus Emerson
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing (series) by Judy Blume
The Mouse and the Motorcycle (series) by Beverly Cleary
Freckle Juice by Judy Blume
How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell
Friendle by Andrew Clements
The Chocolate Touch by Patrick Skene Catling
Stuart Little by E.B. White
George Brown Class Clown (series) by Nancy Krulik

Check It Out!

(photo from lifeofzarf.com)

This is going to be a very quick post because 1. I am on lunch break and 2. I only have 10 minutes left:)

I have been sitting here the last 20 minutes trying to find new books to show Rahni and I come across this littel gem Life of Zarf The Trouble With Weasels by Rob Harrell. What initially drew me into it wa sthe cover art for the book that is featured on Penguin’s website. I am a fan of Harrell’s other books such as Big Top and Monster on the Hill. I was totally unaware of this book, I am so glad that I clicked the link!

The book has all of the elements that we look for; great illustrations (of course because Harrell is amazing), cover art that will grab your attention, and a great plot (from what I read in the excerpt).  I love that it is a comic style/graphic novel style book with just enough prose that she doesn’t get bored or fly through it too quickly. Since she is really into the Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Dork Diaries, Big Nate, etc I think that this book will go over pretty well with her. Another thing I love is that the web page not only information on the book and author, but also it’s cahracters. To me, this really is great because it goes deeper than just what you read on the pages. It helps to expand your imagination about the characters and most importantly it promotes fandom amongst young readers. This is awesome to me as I am attempting to raise a geek:)

If you have time, definitely check it out! You can also read an excerpt here.

Books that Rahni is adding to her list

Even though Santa gave her quite a few new books for Christmas, my little bookworm somehow can still manage to want more new books to read. Totally believable. We are talking about a little person who starts at least 5 books at a time. She was reading so many books recently that she ran out of bookmarks so she had to get creative. I had no idea until I found erasers, toilet paper, and receipts as books marks. One time she even used a stick of gum.

Well, seeing as how Santa also alleviated her deficiency of bookmarks issue with some totally cool personalized bookmarks from Frecklebox.com, she has decided to add more books to her already long ‘To Read’ list.

bookmark

Not that I am complaining that she wants to read more, I would just LOVE for her to finish some of the books she has started.

1. This is actually not just one book, it is a series of books by author Hillary McKay with a main character named Lulu.

Lulu is a 7 year old girl that loves animals, so Rahni immediately felt she was a kindred spirit.

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2. The Year of Billy Miller by Kevin Henkes. Henkes is one of her favorite authors, so it’s no wonder she loved the excerpt from this one. It’s about a 2nd grader named Billy who seems a little uncertain about how his year will be.
billy

3. Doll Bones by Holly Black. This appears to be a bit advanced for her reading level but she is adamant about taking a stab at it. A novel about 2 friend who go on a journey at the request of ghost that inhabits the dolls body. I’m not really sure that she will get around to reading this one, but I am pretty sure that I will:)

doll bones

4. Dory Fantasmagory by Abby Hanlon. A book about a brave little girl who has an over active imagination and is the youngest of 3.

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5. I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this book! Firebird by Misty Copeland. It’s a book about confidence. courage, and motivation; things that any girl of any age or race can identify with. This is a picture book, so it will not be difficult for her to read. I have a feeling that this book will be one that she will keep on her shelf and maybe one day pass it down to her daughter.

firebird

My Child Can Read ANYTHING…or can she??

Let me just start by saying that my daughter can virtually read ANYTHING. And by ‘read’ I mean just that. She can read long multi-syllabic words by sounding them  out phonetically and she usually gets the pronunciations correct. HOWEVER…she does not always comprehend what she is reading. And by ‘always’ I mean OFTEN. Do not get my wrong, at her grade level she comprehends just fine. She is able to grasp the meaning and if there is a lesson, she pretty much is able to figure that out as well. The problem with this is that she flies through books that are at her grade level. As any other parent that is completely blown away by this, I started feeding her more and more books. In her home library she has over 100, and that is not including what is on her Kindle apps on her Ipod and Galaxy…or my Iphone. In Kindergarten, she started reading  Junie B Jones chapter books. And just last week, she got her first Harry Potter book after her constant begging for it.

 

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Well……

As much as it prides me that my 7, soon to be 8 year old is able to pick up a dictionary and read each word with ease, it kind of worries me that 5 minutes after she reads a book she has no idea or has a hard time summarizing what happened. I felt like this was very problematic, hence her re reading Junie B Jones book 1 that she read 2 years ago. At first, I was hesitant to go back a few grade levels because I didn’t want her to get bored or to stop trying to excel at reading. I didn’t want her ultimate goal of reading “big people” books to be forgotten or abandoned. To my surprise neither of these things have happened! She still enjoys reading books like Junie B, if not more so now then when she was 5. She still flies through the book, but with the shorter chapters and larger print, it’s not as much information for her to have to process. Now when I ask her what happened, it is a lot easier for her to recall and she has a very good understanding of what happened.

Now that I think of it, she is more like me than I thought. About 3 years ago, when the first Hobbit movie was coming out, I decided to re read the book because I am ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE. If there is a book to movie, it is imperative that I read the book first (this excludes books based on motion pictures). I know, I’m a snob:) Anyway, keep in mind that I have not read The Hobbit since high school. It only took me a couple days to read it…because I was reading it at work. I absolutely LOVED it! I cannot remember loving the book in high school. I don’t know if it is because I was forced to read it, or because my imagination and level of comprehension has expanded since then. Either way, the dots connected and the light bulb went off.

Seeing and understanding how this works for her now, I will continue to encourage her to read more grade level appropriate books for her level of comprehension. However, we have already made the agreement that for free reading time, she can read anything she wants. Of course, this is within reason as she is also itching to read Game of Thrones. I told her maybe in middle school. Maybe. Probably. We’ll see. 🙂

My Favorite Thing I Read This Week

Title: Officer Buckle and Gloria
Main Character(s): Officer Buckle and Gloria
Why is it your favorite book this week?  This book is very funny! Gloria was doing flips and tricks and everyone loved it. Officer Buckle didn’t even realize it. They made a great team!

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