July 5, 2018

Books on Blankets


Looking for a fun way to encourage summer reading?  Consider hosting Books on Blankets!  It’s an easy and fun way to promote literacy and books for students and their families.  

I’m always looking for engaging ways to get students reading over the summer.  For years I’ve hosted Teacher Tuesdays at the public library (click here for more details).  New this year, I started Books on Blankets and it was a big hit!  Start by picking a summer date and time (we did a Monday evening from 7:00pm-8:00pm) and a location (we did the school’s front lawn). Then promote the event with students and families, and asked them to bring a book and a blanket.  I did a sign-up genius to invite staff members to attend and asked them to bring a book to read aloud.  The day of the event, I pulled a variety of books from the school library for families to read, put them in three roll crates, and rolled them outside.  I set up a few blankets and lawn chairs, and brought popsicles for students to enjoy in the summer shade.  Students and their families drove, rode bikes, and walked to the event - with books and blankets in hand!  Staff, students, and parents talked about their summer fun and read books - some alone and some together.  A few teachers and a parent did a read aloud.  We enjoyed the perfect summer night, no rain and a comfortable temperature.  

All in all, our first Books on Blankets was a fun and successful event.  It doesn’t get any better than staff, students, and families reading together on a beautiful summer evening. 

What kind of summer reading events do you host at your school?  For more ways to encourage students to read over the summer, click here.  Happy summer reading!

June 1, 2018

Top 10 Circulated Beginning Chapter Books


What beginning chapter books were popular with students during the 2017-2018 school year?  Last spring, Travis Jonker of 100 Scope Notes inspired my first top ten beginning chapter book list (click here to see it).  I’m back to reveal my student’s favs this school year.  BTW, last year’s #1 pick is the champ again this year - kids love Andy Griffiths books!  

Here are my student’s top 10 most circulated beginning chapter books of the 2017-2018 school year:



10.  Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu by Tracey West



9.  Barbie: I Can be a Horse Rider by Mary Man-Kong



8.  Ninjago: Rise of the Snakes by Tracey West



7.  Dance! Dance! Underpants! by Bob Shea



6.  Fly Guy’s Ninja Christmas by Tedd Arnold



5.  The Cat on the Mat is Flat by Andy Griffiths



4.  Barbie: I Can be a Gymnast by Kristen L. Depken



3.  Barbie: I Can be a Teacher by Mary Man-Kong



2.  Barbie: I Can be a Ballerina by Christy Webster



1.  The Big Fat Cow Goes Kapow by Andy Griffiths



Top 10 Circulated Picture Books




What picture books were popular with students during the 2017-2018 school year?  Last spring, Travis Jonker of 100 Scope Notes inspired my first top ten picture book list (click here to see it).  I’m back to reveal my student’s favs this school year.  BTW, Elephant and Piggie continue to dominate!

Here are my student’s top 10 most circulated picture books of the 2017-2018 school year:



10.  Elephants Cannot Dance! by Mo Willems



9.  Sam & Dave Dig a Hole by Mac Barnett



8.  Should I Share My Ice Cream? by Mo Willems



7.  I Will Take a Nap! by Mo Willems



6.  Are You Ready to Play Outside? by Mo Willems



5.  I Broke My Trunk! by Mo Willems



4.  Happy Pig Day! by Mo Willems



3.  Let’s Go For a Drive! by Mo Willems



2.  Watch Me Throw the Ball! by Mo Willems



1.  Pigs Make Me Sneeze! by Mo Willems


As you can see my students remain big fans of Mo Willems!  I was curious how far their love for Mo would go, so I ran the stats for the top 25 most circulated picture books.  It’s clear Mo Willems reigns as king in my school library!  Here are the titles from #11-#25:



11.  I’m a Frog by Mo Willems



12.  The Pigeon Needs a Bath! by Mo Willems



13.  Peanut Butter & Cupcake! by Terry Border



14.  Today I Will Fly! by Mo Willems



15.  I Really Like Slop! by Mo Willems



16.  My New Friend Is So Fun! by Mo Willems



17.  My Friend is Sad by Mo Willems



18.  We Are In a Book! by Mo Willems



19.  A Big Guy Took My Ball! by Mo Willems



20.  Dino-Baseball by Lisa Wheeler



21.  Dino-Basketball by Lisa Wheeler



22.  There is a Bird on Your Head!  by Mo Willems



23.  Uni the Unicorn by Amy Krouse Rosenthal



24.  Knuffle Bunny Too: A Case of Mistaken Identity by Mo Willems



25.  Fancy Nancy and the Wedding of the Century by Jane O’Connor


Top 10 Circulated Nonfiction Books





What nonfiction books were popular with students during the 2017-2018 school year?  Last spring, Travis Jonker of 100 Scope Notes inspired my first top ten nonfiction book list (click here to see it).  I’m back to reveal my student’s favs this school year.  BTW, Minecraft and Raina Telgemeier continue to dominate!

Here are my student’s top 10 most circulated nonfiction books of the 2017-2018 school year:



10.  Coding Games in Scratch by Jon Woodcock



9.  Stone Rabbit #1: BC Mambo by Erick Craddock



8.  Minecraft: Combat Handbook by Stephanie Milton



7.  El Deafo by Cece Bell



6.  Ghosts by Raina Telegmeier



5.  Sisters by Raina Telegmeier



4.  The Ultimate Unofficial Encyclopedia for Minecrafters by Megan Miller



3.  Hacks for Minecrafters: Redstone by Megan Miller



2.  Minecraft: Essential Handbook by Stephanie Milton



1.  Smile by Raina Telegmeier


Top 10 Circulated Chapter Books




What chapter books were popular with students during the 2017-2018 school year?  Last spring, Travis Jonker of 100 Scope Notes inspired my first top ten chapter book list (click here to see it).  I’m back to reveal my student’s favs this school year.  BTW, Diary of a Wimpy Kid remains on top again this year!

Here are my student’s top 10 most circulated chapter books of the 2017-2018 school year:



10.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul by Jeff Kinney



9.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck by Jeff Kinney



8.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days by Jeff Kinney



7.  Wonder by R.J. Palacio



6.  Pax by Sara Pennypacker



5.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel by Jeff Kinney



4.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth by Jeff Kinney



3.  Dog Man by Dav Pilkey



2.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Old School by Jeff Kinney



1.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever by Jeff Kinney