Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Guinea Pig Party And A Special Visit From Author And Illustrator Holly Surplice....and a tiny new friend, Cutie

We had a very fun day at Van Meter!  

The kindergarten, first, and second graders had a special visit with Holly Surplice, author and illustrator of Guinea Pig Party.  We Skyped with her from Great Britain.  
Holly read Guinea Pig Party and everyone loved it.  
The students then thanked Holly for visiting and asked her questions.  One of our 2nd graders asked her how to get a book published and another wanted to know how to draw such great illustrations. 
 Holly showed them how she draws her illustrations on the computer and by using other digital tools.
After Holly's visit, we had another very special guest.   Our friend Christa (and mom of two of our students) brought their new guinea pig Cutie for everyone to meet.
 They loved meeting Cutie!
 And Miss McClintock's class loved checking out where Cutie lived too.
 And no "Guinea Pig Party" is complete without cupcakes.

My little guy Hagan, who is in 2nd grade, helped me make the cupcakes on our snow day yesterday...He loved passing them out to his classmates too.
It was so neat reading Holly's Facebook and Twitter posts today.  Amazing that technology can bring together such a great experience for everyone.  
Thank you so much Holly for Skyping with our little people....Everyone loved it so much.  We can't wait to see you again. 

And thank you Christa for bringing Cutie, making yummy cupcakes, and for putting on a great Guinea Pig Party. 

Guinea Pig Party is a beautiful book that everyone should have in their library.  

A Day To Make A Difference, A Day To Celebrate Literacy With Everyone....LitWorld's "World Read Aloud Day"

I just love this video and it says it all....

World Read Aloud Day Is Coming!  

On March 6th, thousands of people from all over the world will come together to celebrate and bring awareness to literacy as a human right.  

Celebrate by reading aloud, giving away a book, or taking action in any way you can to "Read It Forward" on behalf of the 793 million people who cannot yet read or write.  

World Read Aloud Day creates a community of people who are advocating for every child's right to learn to read and technology that will make them lifelong readers.  Everyone can change the world by "Reading It Forward" with loved ones or new friends.  We can create a ripple effect that resonates around the world with the power of story and shared words.  
LitWorld, the organization that founded World Read Aloud Day, offers free downloadable activity kits full of ideas for children, teens, families, educators and professionals at the World Read Aloud Day Activities page.
On this page, you can even download this adorable little book New Day, New Friends by C. Alexander London.  It is a wonderful story to share with children any day.  
I am so excited to be part of the Social Media WRADvocate Team, along with other awesome friends.  We will be sharing our experiences and ideas on the World Read Aloud Day Blog and on Twitter.
We are planning our World Read Aloud Day (Week) at Van Meter by connecting with our favorite authors, special guests, and other schools around the world.  Our community comes together by supporting the right to read with very special activities and events.  This is one of the BEST days of the year. 

You can connect with LitWorlds on Twitter at @litworldsays and by using the hashtag #WRAD13 for World Read Aloud Day. Also, on the LitWorld Facebook page.  

We hope you will all join us in celebrating literacy on March 6th for World Read Aloud Day. Please register for World Read Aloud Day and bring your children, family, students, teachers, friends, parents, community, network, work place, church, and the world along.

It's time for all of us to join the global literacy movement.  We can all make a difference.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Collaborative Acrostic Poem Project....."What's Your Name Mean To You" Music and Art Rap

Have you ever thought about what your name means to you?  Our 4th graders sure did this month!  

After focusing on poetry throughout the month of January, each of the students created wonderful acrostic poems to be used in a collaborative project within the classroom, art and music rooms, and library.  

The 4th graders have now taken their acrostic poems into the music room to create raps with Marsha Fries, our music teacher.  I will help them record their raps and we will use them in a class video, along with pictures of name initials they have created in the art room with Shelley Broderick, our art teacher at Van Meter.  
This week they are also sharing their acrostic poems on their KidBlogs.  You can view their posts at Van Meter 4th Graders KidBlogs.

Please feel free to leave comments for them too....They will love the feedback and to know you have read their poems.
 This is Kennedy B.'s blog....I just love what she wrote in her acrostic poem...

"Extraordinary in the library" for the e in her name.  She is definitely that.  :)
The 4th graders had fun learning about and creating acrostic poems on Thinkfinity's readwritethink website, What Is An Acrostic Poem?
You can find a few more poetry websites they also used on the Van Meter 4th Grade Symbaloo.

We look forward to sharing our music and art acrostic rap video in a few weeks.  You will then know the answer to the question....

"What's Your Name Mean To You?"

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Looking For A New Book To Read? Come Check Out The 4th Graders "Book Talk Bubbles"!

Are you looking for a new book to read? 

Come on in and check out our Book Talk Bubbles!  
Our 4th and 5th graders have been very busy with writing, creating, and sharing book talks in their classrooms and within the library.  

Each 4th grader created a "Book Talk Bubble" for one of their favorite books that we can find within our library collection.  

We talked about how fun it is to share these with our friends and teachers...and what fun it is to decorate the library with awesome recommendations from our very own young people.  

These are my most favorite recommendations to hear and read.  
After their book bubbles were created and placed on the books in the library, the 4th graders also posted on their KidBlogs.

You can check out Sydney's Fun Blog and the others here at Van Meter 4th Graders.  I love how some of them took actual pictures of themselves with their book talk bubble in the library.
As you can see, they created wonderful book talk bubbles about all kinds of books within our library.  
Thank you Kylie, London and Josie for making our fun little people for the door....What a great way to tell everyone to come check out our "Book Talk Bubbles."
We want to thank our amazing teacher librarian friend Tiffany Whitehead for the wonderful idea!  :)
And so much fun seeing that others are putting up their own "Book Talkers" too.   Thank you for sharing a picture from your library with us, Michelle Hall.

Next on the Van Meter Library Voice Blog....

Just wait and see what the 5th graders are doing with their book talk bubbles.