Best Book I Have Not Read

Writing, Reading, Teaching, Life, Attempting to Balance it All

What’s Keeping Me From Blogging September 19, 2010

Filed under: school — bestbookihavenotread @ 4:06 pm

Levy Meetings replaced Curriculum Night meetings

Work replaces work. Enough Said. I can’t imagine every working anywhere but in a school.

Levy Sub-committee Meetings

Graduate Classes-Community Relations and Building Consensus-Good timing with the above meetings.

Field Hockey practices and games. The “hardly any away games” thing hasn’t really held true this year.

Flag Football practices and games. Testosterone and losing football games is a new phenomenon to me as a mom, but brings back bad flashbacks of childhood with two younger brothers.

Sleeping: without dreaming; or Sleeping with middle of the night waking

Things I’m looking forward to:

Starting a new book club book for my grown-up book club. Notice I say grown-up rather than “adult”. Taking no chances there. We meet in September and select a year’s worth of books. On tap:  Marcello in the Real World as our Young Adult pick and coming up quickly, The Magicians by Lev Grossman.

Getting together with my Central Ohio KidLit Blogging friends. We are going to see Michael Grant (Gone, Hunger, Lies, and now Magnificent Twelve–LOVE HIM!). As I just started running his books through my head and trying to picture where they are in my house or office, I just remembered he is married to the fabulous K. A. Applegate. It’s probably too much to hope that she’ll be touring with him, but I’m going to bring Home of the Brave, Buffalo Storm, and Roscoe Riley books with me (Just In Case!).


Books Floating Around the House September 8, 2010

Filed under: audiobook,book reviews,young adult — bestbookihavenotread @ 7:03 am

Reviews to write:

Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

I’ve stalled reading The Replacement and it is creeping me out. I don’t think I can get through it.

I am loving Revolution by Jennifer Donnley. It’s a book that keeps amazing me with how good it is!

I’m still reading The Magician by Lev Grossman to see if it might be a good fit for my book club.


Just Right books September 6, 2010

Filed under: reading — bestbookihavenotread @ 8:00 pm

I love, love, love when something I know to be true comes out of one of children’s mouths-not from me, but from repeating something they learned at school.

I wish I’d had a video camera to capture this moment.

Simon-“Mom, can you help me find a just right book? It’s really important to my teacher that I read just right books. She complemented me for picking a just right book at school.”

Me-“Sure Simon. What book did you pick at school.”

S-“It was a Geronimo Stilton, but it might be a little too easy for me.”

Me-“Simon, I’m so proud of you. Knowing how to pick a just right book is an important skill. Even if Geronimo feels a little bit easy for you, you can still get better as a reader by reading it and others in the series.”

S-“Okay. What should I pick tonight?”

Me-“Let’s take a look (going through his book shelf with him, pulling books and sorting them into piles). Would you like me to get some books from my study that I think you would be interested in?”

S-“Sure. Wow! Look at all these books I can pick from. Which one do you think I should start first?”

(We talk through pros of each book). He then decides he needs his older sister’s advice to decide for sure.

S-“Maggie can you help me find a book to read?”
Maggie-“Sure. Do you have some picked out?”

He shows her the pile. They sit on his bed together and sort through and put them in a pile. He starts to put the others away on his shelf when Maggie stops him. “No Simon, don’t put them away. You need to have a stack next to your bed so that you always know what you are going to read next.”

Thank you Mrs. Krebehenne!

Thank you Mr. Morris!

You are helping my kids be readers for life and I can’t thank you enough!


ELL Resources September 5, 2010

Hello Blogging Community,

I’m looking for some input.

What are the best resources that you turn to when you are preparing for ELL students in your classroom or your school. I have my “go-to’s” for reading, writing, literacy, etc. but need to have a couple “go-to’s” that address this topic.

Please leave me a comment and let me know what you consider the best out there.



Technology in Review part 1 September 4, 2010

Filed under: 21st Century Technologies,technology — bestbookihavenotread @ 9:40 am
Tags: ,

One of the things I did this past week was to help interview candidates for our district’s opening for a Technology Director. Listening to the responses of the candidates also caused me to reflect on just how far technology has come since I started in the education field over eighteen years ago.
When started teaching in 1992, there were no computers in the classroom. I didn’t have a computer at home. There was a computer “lab” that had fifteen Apple IIe’s in a trailer known not very fondly as the “portable”. It was well out to the side of the high school football field where it met up with the elementary playground.

I had several disastrous attempts to take my class to the lab to use software on a floppy disc. You know. The big 5 1/4 quarter inch soft floppy that was first out. There were some copies of Oregon Trail and some math game. In teacher education, we had learned to write a program that could make a turtle icon up and back.

I got my own computer later that year when I started my master’s degree at The Ohio State university. It was a heavy Mac-I don’t remember the exact model but from looking through images, I’m 95% sure it was the MacintoshII. I think it was around $2000 when it was all said and done. I was darn proud to have one as it was expected that we have access to one for our master’s degree work. I remember going to Micro Center to buy a dial up modem so I could do some online research. It was a beast of a machine that I carried from the student union at OSU to my car some far distance away. The modem came with AOL and used a search engigne that I think was called Gopher.

My third year of teaching we each got one big dinosaur of a computer for our classroom. I don’t remember any software that came with it, but I was able to type my newsletters and create study guides or tests in an “word” like program. It used the 3 inch hard “floppies” to save, as did my home computer. Some files I worked with in grad school might span five discs. There was still no Internet at school.

Sometime  around 1997, SchoolNet money from the state brought upgraded electrical wiring and internet wiring to the classroom. Large conduits on the inside of the classroom walls were run and it was a big deal to decide where to have your outlet put, as it would decide your classroom configuration for years to come. Before that electrical upgrade, there was one outlet in the back of the room and one outlet in the front of the room.