Monday, August 31, 2015

Saturday and Teacakes

Saturday and Teacakes by Lester Laminack
Paintings by Chris Soentpiet
Publisher: Peachtree
Published: 2004
ISBN: 9781561453030
Personal Copy

It's been awhile since I have blogged about some great books for writing - especially for ideas. My apologies to my followers.

Today I have one that I love as a great read aloud, but also to provide an example for a narrow idea.

Lester tells about how he spent his Saturday mornings traveling to his Mammaw's house and how they spent their Saturdays together.

He pedals from his home to Chandler's where he must look both ways before crossing the street...

When he gets to Mammaw's, she is waiting just for him. They go inside, and she makes breakfast.

Then they go out to work...

Once they have finished, they eat lunch. Then the real fun fun begins! It's time to make teacakes!

He eats all he can and then takes some home.

As he leaves, his Mammaw is sitting on the glider, waving no one else...just me!

Such a heart warming story and a beautiful relationship between the boy and his Mammaw!

Laminack has written a great teacher's resource to go along with this book. It is titled Cracking Open the Author's Craft: Teaching the Art of Writing.

Teacher Resources:

Monday, August 10, 2015


Today is #PB10FOR10. 

Cathy Mere and Mandy Robek host the Picture Book 10 for 10 (#PB10for10).

Here are my 10 picture books I can't live without. I will be linking them to my blog where I have already reviewed them! Hope you enjoy!

Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening

Owl Moon


Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge

Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox
Illustrated by Julie Vivas
Publisher: Kane/Miller
Published:  1985
ISBN: 9780916291266
Personal Copy

As promised on Monday, here is another book that can be used to help students with ideas.

Willard lived next to an old people's home. He did many things to help the people who lived there.

But his favorite was Miss Nancy Alison Delacourt Cooper. But she had lost her memory...and Wilfrid went out to find out what a memory was.

Something warm...

Something precious as gold...

 and other things.

So Wilfrid went home to find such memories. Things from long ago, things that made you laugh, things that made you sad.

He went back to see Miss Nancy and shared his memories with her...and she started to remember.

As the teacher, bring in items that help you remember things from your past. Share your memories and ask your students to bring in items themselves to share. Then they can add to their "Idea Bank."

Teacher Resources:

Monday, August 3, 2015

Creating a Bank of Ideas

The Matchbox Diary by Paul Fleischman
Illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Published:  2013
ISBN: 9780763646011
Personal Copy

As a teacher, I always had my favorite book to use to help my students come up with ideas for a personal narrative - Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge (I will review this one on Wednesday). However, I found another book that I just found out about to share with you to use with your students (children) - The Matchbox Diary. This will be the perfect read aloud as you start to help students come up with ideas for a personal narrative and their Idea Bank.

Besides providing a different way to save ideas, it is also a beautiful historical fiction picture book that relays the story of an Italian immigrant family in America.

"Pick whatever you like the most. Then I will tell you a story."

What a way to start a book! And the illustration that goes with this beautiful beginning. Books, antiques, pictures...they can all tell a story!

But what the grand-daughter brings is a cigar box. And inside the cigar box are matchboxes. They are her grandfather's diary. He could not read or write, so he kept small possessions to remember his stories.

An olive pit...

A picture of his father...

Macaroni noodle...

Seeds for the number of days to America...

Typesetting letters...

And the grand-daughter starts her own diary in a candy box...

Don't you wish you had such a wonderful way to save your ideas? Or do you? I would love for you to share in the comment section.

Now, I am going to fill in my Writer's Notebook with some ideas of my own...

Teacher Resources: