Archive | September, 2019

Hammer time

24 Sep

Week four and the hammer falls.

We have spent the last three weeks in training – learning when and when not to go to their lockers, what to bring to each class, when to go to the bathroom. The first two weeks were friendly reminders. Last week’s reminders were a little more serious.

“If you do that next week, you’ll have lunch detention.”

Lunch detention is hardly a hardship. Students sit in silence, eating their lunch and reading a book. In a school of 1600, where over 500 6th graders eat at the same time, lunch detention can seem like a respite, but at this point in the year, the 6th graders don’t know that yet.

I had an idea of who my first detainees might be. So, imagine my surprise when one of the sweetest, most responsible boys in class confessed he had left his writer’s notebook in his locker. They students had just taken their seats to begin generating ideas for personal narratives around first times, last times, and times they learned something. This young man, because he was sweet and honest, didn’t just get some notebook paper, he confessed.

I don’t make a big deal out of lunch detention when it happens. Most kids are worried the first time, and ask funny questions like “Are you going to tell my mom?” or “Will this go on my permanent record?”.

The student came back to class with a worried look on his face, so I tried to alleviate his worry with some humor.

“Maybe you could write about “The first time I got lunch detention,” I suggested, grinning.

He smiled back at me, opened his notebook, and got to work.

screen-shot-2017-12-02-at-6-09-23-am

 

 

Crunch!

17 Sep

I love the crunch of a good apple. It is one of the many reasons why Fall is my favorite season.

I was sitting at my desk yesterday, enjoying a crispy autumnal delight when I heard a CRUNCH. It was not a moment when I should have heard such a sound. Was something in the apple, I wondered illogically as I spat out the piece of apple. As I looked for foreign objects, my tongue wandered to the area from which the crunch had emanated. There were sharp edges and a space where tooth enamel used to be. A piece of my tooth had broken away.

Sunday night, despite this only being the third week of school, I had wished for one more day off. Slightly giddy with the realization that this was about to come true, I looked up my dentists phone number to make an appointment.

“I’m not experiencing any pain,” I told the receptionist. “I can do any day this week, but would prefer it not be on Wednesday, we have Back to School Night.”

Of course I got a Wednesday appointment. BTSN might be interesting this year!

screen-shot-2017-12-02-at-6-09-23-am

 

 

This week’s book talks 9/9-13

13 Sep

Monday

Zero Tolerance  by Claudia Mills
15927527

Tuesday

Nine, Ten by Nora Raleigh Baskin
download-10

Wednesday

My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece by Annabel Pitcher
unknown-31

Thursday

The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex
unknown-22

Friday

The Faitful Spy by John Hendrix

FaithfulSpy

 

 

 

Revision

10 Sep

I bought some yarn this summer. Im, fact, I bought quite a bit of yarn. I went on vacation with four patterns in tow and a plan to get yarn for two of them. By the time I got home, I had yarn for three.

I started knitting one of the sweaters, a beautiful short-sleeved top that involves colorwork. I knit a swatch and worried a little that the contrast, which seemed evident in the skeins, seemed muddied in the knitting.

I started the sweater, hoping it would be better, but two rows into the colorwork, I knew it wasn’t going to get better. I set the project aside.

I had purchased the yarn at a store in Montréal. Of course, it was the house brand and only available there. I looked through the color options and placed an order.The yarn arrived yesterday.

70256999_493274058125512_7987874417273208832_n

As tempted as I was to jump right back in a  few things had to happen first. I had to finish the sock I was knitting. I had to wind the skein into a cake. And, I still had to tear out the two rows of colorwork I had already completed. I finished the sock last night, so, when I get home from school today, I will wind and rip. With any luck, I will also begin knitting.

Last week’s book talks

9 Sep

In all the mayhem of the first week of school, I forgot to post about my book talks. I remembered to do them, though.

Wednesday

The Last Last-Day-of-Summer by Lamar Giles
91N3beXWRRL

Thursday

The Magpie’s Library by Kate Blair
download

Friday

Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga
OtherWordsHome+hc

 

 

The Big Five-0

3 Sep

I started school on the Tuesday after Labour Day in 1969.

I’ve been going to school for 50 years!

I was four years old, a December baby, and it was the days when the kindergarten cut-off was December 31st.

thumbnail_IMG_0452
My kindergarten school picture – dress sewn by Mom 

I was super excited about school and insisted Mom teach me how to write my name before we started because I thought that was something I was already supposed to know.

I only found out many years later that, because I was such a shy and introverted child, my parents had considered keeping me home an extra year to mature. They sent me to school that first day with my twin sister, hoping I’d be OK. Fortunately, it worked out and I thrived at school.

So, here I am, 50 years later, still excited about the first day of school. I hope everyone who comes into my class thrives the way I did in Miss Belyea’s class. I know some kids won’t be quite as excited, and that some parents might be worried, like my parents were. I will do my best to be as good for them as Miss Belyea was for me.

Someday

1 Sep

For me, Someday comes on Tuesday, when students arrive for a new school year. For Amelia Linehan, the protagonist of The Arrival of Someday by Jen Malone, Someday is the day she gets a liver transplant.

x400

Publisher’s Summary: Hard-charging and irrepressible, eighteen-year-old Amelia Linehan could see a roller derby opponent a mile away—and that’s while crouched down, bent over skates, and zooming around a track at the speed of light.

What she couldn’t see coming, however, was the flare-up of the rare liver disorder she was born with. But now it’s the only thing she—and everyone around her—can think about.

With no guarantee of a viable organ transplant, everything Amelia’s been sure of—like college plans or the possibility of one day falling in love—has become a huge question mark, threatening to drag her down into a sea of what-ifs she’s desperate to avoid.

Then a friend from the past shows up. With Will, it’s easy to forget about what’s lurking between the lightness of their time together. She feels alive when all signs point elsewhere.

But with the odds decidedly not in her favor, Amelia knows this feeling can’t last forever. After all, what can?

Narrated from Amelia’s POV – she likes to go by Lia – we get a unique perspective on the issue of needing a transplant, and what it is like to be on the receiving end of people’s good intentions.Yes, it is an issue book, but the story is very compelling and there is a smidge of romance and ROLLER DERBY!

In er author’s note at the end, Jen Malone talks about the importance of organ donation and the fact that she included names of donors and people she knows who have supported and raised awareness of organ donation.

Be sure you have a hanky handy; there are some tear-jerker moments when you will really want one.

Randy Ribay

YA author, teacher, nerd

The Fat Squirrel Speaks

Knitting, spinning, and assorted awesomeness.

Global Yell Blog

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

Jone Rush MacCulloch

Deo Writer: Musings to Spark the Spirit

Klickitat St. Readers

Just another WordPress.com site

Readerbuzz

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

PLUMDOG BLOG

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

Gail Carriger

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

Kate Messner

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

Cybils Awards

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

Someday My Printz Will Come

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

The Librarian Who Doesn't Say Shhh!

Opening books to open minds.

Tundra Books

Home of Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers and Friends

andrea gillespie

Inquiring My Way Forward

Kirby's Lane: A Place for Readers and Writers

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

The Horn Book

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

The History Girls

A blog about children's & YA lit, with some basset news thrown in

%d bloggers like this: