Kindergarten classes have been reading the many versions of the classic Gingerbread Man stories in their classroom. In LMC, we read The Library Gingerbread Man, and The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School by Linda Murray, which is a Monarch nominated title this year. In that twisted version of the classic story, the gingerbread man, rather than running away, is running through the school, room by room, trying to find the class that baked him. We decided to make our own version with the gingerbread man loose in Patton school. First, each student took a photo with the iPad in either the art room, gym, music room, nurses office, principal's office or the lunchroom. The using the iPad app Explain Everything, students cut out a gingerbread man sticker so it appears on their photo, and then recorded the refrain from the book, "I am in the (_____room) and I want to get back to my class. I'll run and I'll run as fast as I can, I can catch them, I'm their gingerbread man!" The finished project is a video book. Enjoy their work below:
As the 5th grade navigated the perspectives of loyalists and patriots and the events leading up to the American Revolution in their classrooms, in LMC classes completed a comprehensive timeline that spanned the Proclamation of 1763 through the Declaration of Independence and beyond to several of the important battles. The timeline was completed in groups. Each group was assigned a time period. First they brainstormed a list of important events that occurred during those years, and then each chose an event to research and write about on a shared Google document. Next they input their information onto the online Timeline at tiki-toki.com, where they also added a picture and caption and a link for further information. Below is a smaller version of Mrs. Anderle's class timeline. To see the full version including "3D", go to the Student Project pages.
The 3rd grade BookMunch group read Little Dog, Lost in December and on Thursday, December 12, at lunch, the group spoke with the author, Marion Dane Bauer, by Skype. The students asked many questions about her writing process and how she decided on the character names and places in the story. Mrs. Bauer graciously answered each question and then surprised the students by bringing out her two dogs to meet the students, both of which she had rescued. Student's learned why the book is written in short prose and that the style is easier for student's to read but also more difficult to write! Here are some photographs from the event:
This is a great time to celebrate books that take you away from your home to another place in the World! The right biography, informational text, folktale and even a novel can give the reader a look into another part of the globe without ever leaving their house! Here are some examples that are currently displayed on our library wall, with many more on the shelves:
Chris Grabenstein the author of Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library skyped with students in the Patton LMC at lunch today. The book was our December bookmunch title, our first bookmunch this year! An excited and well read group of 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students gave up their recess to eat a quick lunch in the LMC and then meet Mr. Grabenstein and ask questions. They found out how and where he writes his books, how he came up with the characters, and his favorite books and games. The very animated author also introduced his cat and gave students a "tour" of his office writing space. Several students say they are going to work on the extra puzzle that is hinted at the end of the book, for which there is a great prize - a lot of books! Here are some photos of the event:
On Thursday morning in the LMC, Mrs. Goumas' 4th grade class participated in a "Mystery Skype" with a class they met through the Flat Classroom project - A Week in the Life. For the Mystery Skype, each class asks yes or no questions to determine where the other class is located. To prepare, we wrote a series of beginning questions, bookmarked some map resources, and assigned jobs, such as questioner, researcher, runner, closer, recorder and videographer. Through their questions, our students found out their mystery class was located in Wilmington, Delaware, and they did so before the other class found us! It was a great learning experience that made everyone think about geography, landforms and population. After the Skype, the class wrote reflections on what they learned, what they thought the class did well during the Skype, and what we could do better next time. Here are some photos and also check out - the students' video.
As a research extension of their unit on Native American homes, first grade student's paired up to study a different kind of home, including adobe, igloo, houseboat, cabin, house on stilts, treehouse or underground home. They used a book and the PebbleGo or Facts4Me websites to take notes on a graphic organizer about where or why the home is built, what material it is made of, and what is the weather and environment around it. Just like in the Three Little Pigs story which we read at the beginning of this project, students found out there are reasons people choose to build a certain type of house! Then each student drew a picture of the home they had studied and recorded "everything they learned about it" using an iPad app called Explain Everything. Below is Mrs. Litberg's class ideas. (Check the First Grade Student Project page for the other classes projects)
Escape From Mr. Lemoncello's Library by Chris Grabenstein is a creative imaginative and fast-paced leap into books, mystery, puzzles and an incredible state of the art library. Join Kyle and eleven of his lucky classmates who win a spot to stay overnight in the town's new library, a building designed by the eccentric and genius Luigi Lemoncello, a famous game maker who grew up in the town and loved libraries. Little do they know, they will need to "escape" from the library using clues hidden inside the books and could win a great prize if they can be the first! Watch the author's trailer below, then check out the book!
Sugar by Jewell Parker Rhodes is a very special historical fiction story that takes place on a sugar plantation in Louisiana shortly after Lincoln's proclamation giving slaves their freedom. But Sugar and the elderly couple who take care of her since her mother died don't feel very free, working long hard days in the cane fields and living in the former slave quarters as before the War. Although many former slaves did flee North, a group remains, either too fearful to attempt a new life, or too old, weak or sick. Although she longs for more, Sugar finds fun in a hidden friendship with the plantation owner's son and as much mischief as she can get into when not working the fields. But when the owner brings in a group of Chinese laborers to work in the fields, it is Sugar who bridges the two very different cultural communities, discovers new friendships, and perhaps the way to a new life. Learn more at: Jewell Parker Rhode's website.
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I am the Library Media Center director at Patton School in Arlington Heights where I help students from kindergarten through 5th grade find terrific independent reading for enjoyment and information, and teach students the skills to use information and technology safely and productively and to connect, communicate and share with others. I have four grown children, a large black dog, (flat coat retriever) and a small striped cat. I am an obessive Chicago Cubs fan and I love to run.