Margin Notes

Try This Tomorrow: Book Spine Poetry

Apr
04

If you’re looking for a fun way to get students making poetry, and at the same time get new titles into their hands, try using book spine poetry. This is an easy activity that makes us all poets. Just scan your bookshelf for interesting titles. Each title will make up a line of your poem. Arrange the titles so that they run together as a poem. Stack them in a pile and take a picture!

Here is a link to some 2018 book spine poetry winning poems (with the youngest category being 5-8 year olds!).

And here are some of ours:

Here is a link to our post from last year that includes a link to real world mentor texts of book spine poetry from 2015 when the Toronto Library and the Kansas City library used spine book poetry to trash talk when their baseball teams were both vying for a spot in the World Series

Posting these on class twitter and Instagram accounts is a great way to share the book spine poetry created in your classroom.

WINNER!

Mar
29

Congratulations to Lisa Stewart-Munn for winning #ASDWReads for the month of March! Thank you for sharing your reading moments, and we hope you enjoy your new book.

If you would like to enter the next draw, just snap a photo of a book you read in April, and post it on Twitter under #ASDWReads. We look forward to seeing what books you are spending time with as spring is beginning to fill the air!

Try This Tomorrow: 19 Behind-the-Scenes Secrets of Ikea Employees

Feb
12

Mental Floss recently published, “19 Behind-the-Scenes Secrets of Ikea Employees” an article filled with neat insider information about “what it’s like to work for one of the world’s most recognizable retail stores.” At first, I paid attention to the organizing structure, thinking it would make an interesting mentor text for using titles to identify separate subtopics or ideas and make information writing flow. Then, I realized that the whole concept makes this article a powerful invitation for students to write about the behind-the-scenes secrets of something or someplace they have expert knowledge about. Think of how much you would learn about your students (and they could learn about each other) from these behind-the-scenes secrets!

WINNER!

Feb
05

Congratulations to Melissa Canam for winning #ASDWReads for the month of January! Thank you for sharing your reading moments, and we hope you enjoy your new book.

If you would like to enter the next draw, just snap a photo of a book you read in February and post it on Twitter under #ASDWReads. We look forward to seeing what books are keeping you company while you stay warm this month!

Winner!

Jan
08

Congratulations to Lori Jones-Clark and Sonja Wright for winning #ASDWReads for the month of December! Thank you for sharing your reading moments and we will have a book in the school mail for you ASAP.

If you would like to enter the next draw, just snap a picture of a book you read in January and post it on Twitter under #ASDWReads. We are looking forward to seeing what books you bought over the break!

Try This Tomorrow: Judging a Book by Its Cover

Nov
29

Judge

Literary Hub is one of my favorite bookish websites.  They regularly post round-ups of their favorite book covers of the month with brief explanations about their choices-for example-October, September, and August .

These brief reactions make terrific mentors for students to pay attention to and reflect on the covers of the books they are reading.  Why not ask students to discuss if the cover played a part in their book selection, whether or not the cover captures the essence of the book, what connections they can make between the cover and the content, how the cover has changed over different editions, etc.?  Students can read these round-ups to create a running list of options for commenting on book covers.

Designer Chip Kidd has made a career of trying to make readers judge a book by its cover.  This Time photo essay highlights some of his most iconic covers.

So, go ahead and judge a book by its cover and invite your students to do the same.

Craft Studio: 12 Novels to Remind You What’s at Stake Tomorrow

Nov
22

Vote

What I Was Reading

I subscribe to the Literary Hub Newsletter.  It is a never-ending source of excellent information and inspiration.  On November 5, the day before the US Midterm Elections, they posted 12 Novels to Remind You What’s at Stake Tomorrow: “To remind you of just what’s at stake in tomorrow’s elections, we thought we’d do something a little different and turn to those contemporary fiction writers who have brought some of the most pressing issues currently facing this country to the forefront of their recent work.”

 What Moves I Notice the Writer Making

 Each of the twelve selections in this collection is accompanied by a very short summary followed by a brief review that combines summary, reflection, and analysis. (more…)

Congratulations!

Nov
01

Michelle Wuest and Krista deMolitor, you are the lucky winners for the month of October for #ASDWReads!  We will have a shiny new book in your hands, ASAP:)

To be entered into the draw for November, simply post a picture of a book you have read and use the hashtag #ASDWReads on Twitter.  Happy reading and tweeting!

Book Relay 2018-19

Oct
12

This year, 40 educators are participating in our Book Relay.  In teams of 5, readers will read and circulate a collection of titles.  We took pictures of their stacks before mailing them out.

Grades 6-8:

BR 1

(more…)

Winner! Winner! #ASDWReads…

Oct
03

Congratulations to Melissa Canam for being the winner of our draw for participating in #ASDWReads on Twitter for the month of September!  We will have your prize of a book in your hands ASAP.

To be in the draw for the month of October, snap a picture of a book you just finished and tag it with #ASDWReads on Twitter.  The more you read, the more entries you get-happy reading:)