Tag Archives: read aloud

Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover


Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardiner

This book, originally published in 1980 has become a modern classic and favorite read aloud for many teachers and families. I have read this book many times over the years, but never an edition with this cover art.  Don’t Judge A Book by Its Cover!  This book is one book that every elementary student should read or have read aloud at least once.

This book is based on a Rocky Mountain legend.  Little Willie hopes to pay the $500 in taxes on his grandfather’s farm that are due with the winnings from a dog sled race he enters.  Stone Fox has his most daunting opponent has never lost a race. Will a young boy and his dog, Searchlight, outperform the best sled racers in the country and save the family farm? This story, like its hero, little Willy, has all the ingredients of a winner…right down to the unforeseen drama at the finish line.

After recommending this book to one ASIJ family this week, they emailed me after finishing the book.  Here is a bit of the email I received:

“I think your choice was perfect. This book helps my child’s emotional development and also gave us a great experiment as a family.”

Read of the Day

Several new books arrived today and that I think students and teachers alike will enjoy Frankencrayon. Last year Michael Hall wrote Red, A Crayon’s Story, an excellent read if you’re looking for a good friendship/identity book about feeling useless, until a friend shares a different perspective.Red, A Crayon’s Story would pair well with this year’s Sakura Medal Nominee, The Mermaid and the Shoe by K. G. Campbell.

NEWFrankencrayon:  A companion book to Red, A Crayon’s Story.  This book about seeing beauty in unexpected places and the magic of storytelling.

Let’s Celebrate – World Read Aloud Day

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The ASIJ Elementary Library is joining thousands of schools  and libraries worldwide to celebrate World Read Aloud Day on February 24th.

How can you prepare for World Read Aloud Day?

  • Checkout a recommended read aloud book on display in the elementary library today!
  • Checkout your favorite read aloud chapter or picture book and practice reading with expression.

How can you participate on Wednesday, February 24th?

  • Come to the elementary library during any recess to read aloud your favorite picture book or chapter from your favorite chapter book to a group of ASIJ friends.
  • Listen to a “mystery reader” read aloud a story in the elementary library.
  • Read aloud to a friend, teacher,  parent, or sibling anytime throughout the day or evening.

Recommended World Read Aloud Day Book (click here for a copy of this story)

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This is an excellent read aloud to discuss compassion, friendship, belonging, confidence, and hope.

Click here for more information about World Read Aloud Day.


Spotlight on Sakura

The Lion Who Stole My Arm by Nicola Davies

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Recommended for Grades 2-5:  This is a heart-pounding adventure with descriptive details that allow the reader to visualize the setting and action of the story.  It makes for an excellent read aloud.  The Lion Who Stole My Arm, is a story about bravery and life’s difficult decisions.  I was hooked just five pages into the book when Pedru encounters the lion for the first time. Will Pedru join the conservationists in Mozambique who are trying to save the lions ? Or will he seek revenge?

Other books like The Lion Who Stole My Arm:

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Spotlight On Sakura

The Honest Truth by Dan Gemeinhart

If you only have time to read one Sakura Book this year, The Honest Truth, is a must read!

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Accompanied by his faithful dog, Mark runs away from home, leaving behind his parents and  best friend Jessie, to  fulfill his dream of climbing Mount Rainer. This is a page-turner that will keep you on the edge of your chair and your reading light on until the wee hours of the morning.

Author, Dan Gemeinhart asks, “What are the toughest decisions you have made in your life? If you were like Mark,could you have made the decision to get on the train and leave everything behind?”

More books like The Honest Truth:  

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Don’t Be A Chicken – READ!

Unusual Chickens for theIt all began with Rosie’s Walk by Pat Huchins…Regardless of whether they’re picture books or chapter books, I realized when reading this recently published book this past weekend, that I can’t seem to get enough of books with chickens as main characters.

Sophie Brown, the main character of this book is memorable, but what I enjoyed most about this book was its format.  Kate Klise  started a trend with her Regarding the… and her 43 Old Cemetery Road series, Drew Daywalt continued the trend with the 2015 Sakura Medal Picture Book winner, The Day the Crayons Quit, and Kelly Jones successfully told the entire story from the point-of-view of Sophie Brown through the letters she writes.  When Sophie and her family move from the city to her Great Uncle Jim’s farm she wants to raise some animals.  Needless to say, she is in for a surprise when some very unusual chickens show up at the farm.  I recommend Unusual Chickens for An Exceptional Poultry Farm by Kelly Jones as a second or third grade read aloud.

Don’t Be A Chicken…READ…Chapter Books you’ll love!

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Don’t Be A Chicken…READ…Picture Books you’ll love!

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***Note:  Chick-O-Saurus Rex is a 2016 Sakura Medal contender and P. Zonka Lays An Egg is in the running for a Caldecott Medal.