Archive | May, 2015

Planning ahead

4 May

Yesterday afternoon, the Oregon Basset Hound Rescue Board met for our first meeting to plan the 2015 Oregon Basset Hound Games. The mayor of Woodburn was there, too. She is a very down to Earth basset owner and loves that her town hosts the Games. Last year we added a new event, the Senior Prom, a race for senior bassets. It had people in stitches because, as we had hoped, several dogs refused to go anywhere. We are always on the lookout for new events to add. I am not taking any ideas from this book,

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Worst in Show written by William Bee and illustrated by Kate Hindley.

Albert has decided to enter his pet Monster, Sidney, in the Best Pet Monster int he World Competition. It had fantastic events like Hairiest Warts, Highest Hover, Most Parasites, Smelliest Fart, and Hottest Breath. “Goodness, the Embarrassment” Albert laments as Sidney loses event after event. But Albert’s embarrassment is turned to joy at the end when Sidney wins Worst in Show for earning the lowest score in 100 years.

This is a fun book that can easily inspire kids to write their own topsy-turvy story. Alas, it won’t inspire any new events to the OBHR Games.

 

Fun with Magical Creatures

3 May

Friday Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce came to William Walker as part of their promotional tour of their middle grade novel Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures.

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My class has really been into magical creatures this year. One boy draws and writes stories about dragons and many other students have created comics with characters who have special powers, like Fry Guy, a french fry who  encounters, then,  solves problems. Although they haven’t read this book yet (it will be our next read aloud) I knew they’d be interested once they got to the assembly, so we brainstormed good questions to ask before we went to the assembly.

Once we were there, Maggie and Jackson did not disappoint. They presented a lovely contrast, one dark, one fair; one looking at the bright side, one looking at the dark side.They had clearly practiced their presentation, which was fast-paced and engaging.

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Although they mentioned their book, they spent much of the hour-long presentation talking to the kids about how to create a magical beast.

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Jackson posed questions to the audience while Maggie drew the creature they designed, the Snowplace Pole Deer.

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Their goal was to inspire kids to develop their interests because you never know where they will lead. Jackson and Maggie nth told kids that, through writing, they are able to pursue interests they’ve had since childhood, just not in the way they imagined they would when they were 10 or 11 years old. And I think that is a powerful message.

Guess who’s coming to Walker

1 May

For the last few weeks I have been listening to Maggie Stiefvater’s Raven Cycle  books in the car.

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They’d been on my “to read” list for a while, but Morris obligations and the HUB Challenge kept pushing them further down the list. Then, my principal got a call from Powell’s Books, which is just down the street, asking us if we’d be interested in an author visit from Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce who have collaborated on a middle grade novel. My principal asked me if I knew anything about these authors and I about burst. So, Maggie & Jackson are coming to William Walker Elementary School today.

They will be talking about Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures.

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I will get my signed copy tomorrow, and will write more about their presentation over the weekend.

I will try my best not to go too fangirl, but if I do, I probably won’t write about that.

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