Tag: curriculum connections

TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: Practice Recognizing Fake News

TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: Practice Recognizing Fake News

Cindy: There have been a number of YA fiction books with the title “Two Truths and a Lie,” but we’ve found a creative, informational book for middle-grade students that reinforces evaluating information for truth. Fake news, anyone? Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive (2017) by Ammi-Joan Paquette and Laurie Ann Thompson is the first […]

Bad Arguments: Learning the Lost Art of Making Sense

Bad Arguments: Learning the Lost Art of Making Sense

Cindy: No matter your political affiliation, there’s nothing like an election year to bring out the bad logic. Lynn and I discovered The Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments: Learning the Lost Art of Making Sense (2014) by Ali Almossawi at BookExpo in May. Previously published online at Book of Bad Arguments, this edition is a delightful—and above […]

Astonished That Eighth-Graders Like M. T. Anderson’s Octavian Nothing? Hear It in Their Own Words

Astonished That Eighth-Graders Like M. T. Anderson’s Octavian Nothing? Hear It in Their Own Words

Cindy: My middle-school, eighth-grade, advanced English Language Arts classes just finished a lit circle project. The teacher shared the student feedback surveys with me so I could learn what the students thought about the books we used. I rounded up a list of books and booktalked them to the classes, and then they were asked to rank […]

Fatal Fever: Tracking Down Typhoid Mary

Fatal Fever: Tracking Down Typhoid Mary

Cindy: Please wash your hands before you read this post! Measles, whooping cough, and now an outbreak of typhus … in youth literature, that is! A few years ago, Lynn and I posted about a fictional Typhoid Mary story, Deadly (2011) by Julie Chibbaro, and I was intrigued about Mary Mallon and her real story. This year […]

Checking in on Chernobyl’s Dead Zone

Checking in on Chernobyl’s Dead Zone

Cindy: Almost 30 years ago, when I was a baby librarian—and not too many years after acquiring my college protest marching “No-Nukes” button—a reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine exploded and the news was full of the fallout. Today’s students may be fuzzy on the details, if they even know about this devastating accident. […]

Posted in: Bookends, Young Adult
Educational Reform is Easy! Just Use Picture Books

Educational Reform is Easy! Just Use Picture Books

Lynn and Cindy: While shapes are a common subject for picture books, it is still a pleasure to find new ones that are both fun and instructive for young readers. If it were left to us, we’d throw out all the boring textbooks for the primary grades and stock them with fabulous picture books. See—educational reform […]

By September 19, 2014 0 Comments Read More →

The Best Freebie Friday Ever: Thousands of Ebooks FOREVER

Teachers and librarians, rejoice! Here’s the best Freebie Friday EVER. Thousands of ebooks for your unlimited use, for free, with NO END DATE OR LIMIT! Currently available for the iPad, Epic! is a fast-growing service developed by industry leaders to provide engaging, quality literature on tablets and digital devices. Even though I’m an Android user, […]

Going Over, by Beth Kephart: The Berlin Wall for YA

Going Over, by Beth Kephart: The Berlin Wall for YA

Lynn: Recently, my fifth-grade grandsons and I visited the Grand Rapids Public Museum, where a section of the Berlin Wall is on exhibit. After listening to me try to explain how it came to be, one of them asked, “Didn’t people try to get across it?” “Yes,”  I said, “That is exactly what people tried to […]

The Right Word by Jen Bryant

The Right Word by Jen Bryant

Lynn:  When I first heard about The Right Word:  Roget and His Thesaurus (Eerdmans 2014) I KNEW I would love it.  The winning team of Jen Bryant and Melissa Sweet AND the story of Peter Roget – a shy boy who loved words and made lists!  I’ve now read the book in falling- apart galley […]

Leaving China by James McMullan

Leaving China by James McMullan

Lynn:  We reviewers are supposed to be analytical about our reading and writing, assessing the elements of what we read and conveying those to you making decisions about what to read and purchase.  I try, really I do.  But sometimes a book comes along that I just love.  Period.  Leaving China:  An Artist Paints His […]