Thursday, October 31, 2013

Workshops, Folktales, Fabulous Volunteers

This week I continued to work with third grade classes in their Readers' and Writers' Workshops. They have been reading nonfiction books about animals and identifying the main ideas and supporting details. Then they developed tables of contents and began writing chapters for their own animal books. It has been amazing to see the thoughtfulness with which these scholars are approaching their nonfiction books. I have ordered dozens more animal titles for the library to support the third graders' research...with interesting topics like komodo dragons, I know these books will be a hit with scholars all over the school!

Second graders have been continuing with a unit on folktales. At the end of each of these stories from around the world the scholars have been answering the questions "What can you tell about the climate and geography of the country where this folktale is from?" They have become adept at looking for evidence like plants, clothing, mountains, and rivers in the texts and illustrations. We have shared folktales from Japan, India, Wales, and today's book from Liberia: Head, Body, Legs by Won-Ldy Paye and Margaret Lippert.

And, just like every week, many fabulous volunteers came to help in the library with checkouts, creating displays, putting books away, and reading with students. These parents and community members donate over 20 hours per week of their time to help our scholars become better readers. Thank you volunteers! And if you are interested in volunteering, please contact me -- I would love to hear from you!

Have a wonderful weekend -- Mrs. Redford

Friday, October 25, 2013

Research Central

The RES Library was full of young researchers this week. Fourth graders continued their work on their "Interest Posters." They found facts and images about topics of their own interest, wrote citations, and reflected on why it's important to cite your sources. Please come see their work in the library when you have a minute.

Third graders came to the library to find more books and take notes for their nonfiction reading and writing "Expert" unit. Wow...all these books for just one class!

And two first grade scholars did a little independent research to help themselves write a song for one of Mr. Godfrey's Essential Questions about healthy food. "Do we have any books about vegetables?" they asked. Yes, we sure do.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Working Together

This week I had a chance to work together with the RES third grade teachers on their nonfiction reading unit. Instead of third grade scholars coming to the library, I went to their classrooms as they learned about previewing nonfiction books, then reading them with power. These will be great skills as the scholars begin their research and nonfiction writing work later this year.

Also this week, a class of third grade scholars came to the library to work together with kindergartners during the younger scholars' library class. The third graders read aloud to the enthusiastic kindergartners. It was a great opportunity for the third graders to practice their reading fluency for a star-struck audience!

Enjoy your long weekend with your families! - Mrs. Redford

Friday, October 11, 2013

Experts and Interests

The RES library was hopping this week with scholars finding books for research projects and reading! Third graders found books to help them with their nonfiction "I'm an Expert" projects in their classrooms. It was a great chance to practice using the library catalog and call numbers.

Quarter Horse Expert

Dalmatian Expert

Fourth graders found nonfiction books on topics they were interested in so they could create "Interest Posters" for their Enrichment Library classes. This project emphasized quoting and paraphrasing information and citing sources. The scholars were so interested in their topics they wanted to check their research books out and take them home!

Interested in robots

Interested in soccer, space and Egypt

A finished Interest Poster with four facts, an image, and citations.

The kindergartners explored the comics section. One student found a comic book about volcanoes -- lots of great true information about volcanoes, and a scientist superhero named Max Axiom.

And the second graders checked out tons of books about history, animals, origami, helicopters...happy reading everyone!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Spanish Books, Citations, and Special Guest Readers

It was another week of discovery and learning in the RES library. The kindergartners explored the Spanish collection, where we keep the books that Senora Harris uses in her Spanish classes plus other great titles like Chato's Kitchen by Gary Soto. We read this one made us all hungry for quesadillas and more!

The fourth graders spent time in the computer lab finding and citing images for their Enrichment Library classes. We asked them, why is it important to cite the images you use?

We also had several guest readers in the library this week. Our fabulous guidance counselor, Mrs. Kane, stopped by and read the Very Hungry Caterpillar with some first graders (actually, they mostly read it to her!)

And a group of third graders came in to read to kindergartners during their library class. The shared reading was a great learning experience for everyone.