Friday, July 29, 2011

Reading Vacation Day or Happy Birthday to Me

For my birthday, my husband gave me the best gift ever! A day at the beach, all to myself, to do whatever I wanted. I love the beach. And I love to read and nap and take long walks and swim. And I do love doing those things with other people too. But I don't mind doing them on my own either. So, on this day I got to the beach early and left very late. I packed three books thinking this might be overkill, but I was wrong. I read each, cover to cover without too much effort.

First up was Andrew Clements' The Landry News. I enjoyed this story, much as I enjoy all of Andrew Clements books, but the concept that a teacher could actually sit and do nothing with no repercussions was a bit disturbing, especially in these teacher bashing times that we live in. The principal re-iterated the misconception that teachers with tenure can't lose their jobs and that simply isn't true. But I'll get off my political soapbox. I thought the concept of first amendment rights challenges was a strong one for students to understand with real context.

The second book I read was the third in Dan Gutman's Baseball Card Adventure series with Joe Stoshack: Babe and Me. I enjoy these books and liked the story that Dan incorporated of Babe taking the drive to visit a sick boy on the day of one of the World Series games. Oe's mission was to see if Babe really called the shot. Whether he called it or pointed at the pitcher is still debatable, but he pointed at something.

The third book I read was Andrew Clements' A Week in the Woods. Are you seeing a pattern? I've been reading my way through our existing collection, or trying to anyway. This book and the experience the students have reminded me very much of a trip our sixth graders take each year to the Pocono Environmental Education Center. I'm excited to share it with those teachers and also my fifth grade students as they look forward to the trip the following year.

Overall, I had a great reading vacation and can't wait to do it again, but for now I'll read them one at a time and love every minute of it!

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