It's Monday! What have you Made? What are you Reading?

I love the summer time for teaching blogs.  There are so many wonderful things to read and reflect on.
Today I'm posting double duty and linking up with Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Tara at Fourth Grade Frolics for two fun links!
First, every Monday,  Jen hosts a link about What are you Reading?
I found Jen's blog from my bloggy friend Shannon at I Run, Read and Teach and from Teacher's Write. 
This past week I read A Long Walk to Water by Newberry medalist, Linda Sue Park.
This is a powerful 120 page dual narrative!  The book tells two stories in one.  The first is about Nya who lives in the Sudan and spends her entire day, seven months of the year, walking to a pond to fetch water for her family.  She walks for 8 hours a day!  The second narrative focuses on Salva who is forced from his home by fighting rebels in Sudan.  He becomes part of the Lost Boys who eventually make their way to the United States.  Without giving away the whole "cow," the end of this book is amazing, and I never saw it coming.  I know my sixth graders would even enjoy this as a read a loud, and I am thinking of all the connections I can make to our social studies curriculum.  Best of all for me, Salva relocated to Rochester, NY which is my state!  I think my students will really look forward to this book, making a geographical connection!
I also made my daughter who is an eigth grader read the text.  She loved the dual narrative, and this book gave her a really interesting perspective on what life may have been like for her two cousins who were adopted from Ethopia.  I LOVE when books pull at your heartstrings and MAKE YOU THINK!

Secondly today, I am linking up with Tara for her Monday Made It.

This year we were fortunate with printing.  Our district allows us to send PDFs to the district print shop for copying.  They will copy in color, and cardstock with  no charge to us.  I am in love with this!  Right at the end of my school year, I discovered they will also make posters.. and... wait for it.... THEY WILL LAMINATE THEM! Woot!
Although I didn't get one made in color.. an option I didn't know existed until I picked up my posters, I did have several posters made for my classroom.
These are poster's I'll use with Daily 3 in my room.  I know that writing expectations at the beginning of the year is part of the process, but bear in my mind, I teach 6th grade, so these Smarties have already heard this and know basic expectations, and I only have an 80 minute block for my whole ELA time.  I would rather spend that working on the STAMINA pieces.  That was a huge focus for me last year, and I am hoping it paid off with our ELA scores.

Have you made something awesome? or READ something you just have to share?  Stop by and visit the gals above and link up and let them know!  Also, leave me a comment or two and let me know about another great book you are reading!  I'm trying to get through at least one a week along with the two PD books I'm working on!


  1. Definitely going to add that book to my list.. sounds awesome! I am like you.. I Love books that take me to another place and put me in another's shoes.

    I am *super* jealous of your printing service! I send all my stuff to Office Depot and pay for it myself.. so nice that you have that option!

    :) Erin

  2. Great posters! I love that you do Daily 5/3 with your older kids! It's awesome:)

    4th Grade Frolics

  3. Oh, I loved A Long Walk to Water...and so did my sixth graders. We use it as a book club book which launches an investigation. As you dsay, thisis an important book for our kids to rad - so much they can learn from this narrative!

  4. Thanks for sharing the book. It sounds like such an interesting story. I've added it to my list. Your posters look great!


  5. I am jealous of your printing service! Our print shop will only make posters if you fill out a never ending form, and forget about laminating!

  6. The books sounds great! I will have to check it out. We have a large Sudanese population in my district, so they will really be able to connect to the story.


  7. Love novels written in two (or more) voices--I will have to get a copy...

    Sarah @ Hoots N Hollers

  8. Love your website. I have not read A Long Walk to water, but it looks great! Same goes for your made it. So creative.

  9. This sounds like a terrific story. I always enjoy two perspectives in one story.

    I'll have to check it out. Would you recommend it as a read aloud in 6th grade?

  10. That is awesome that you can have posters printed and laminated. I have made mine in Publisher and cut and paste them together, not so fancy!! A Long Walk to Water was serialized in our newspaper and offered as a literature study this past year.

    Looking From Third to Fourth

  11. Your print shop sounds like heaven on earth for a teacher-- but the real question is, do they cut the laminating too!?
    Karen :o)
    Mrs. Stamp's Kindergarten

  12. Yay to the power of books! Reminds me of the new novel: Parched by Melanie Crowder. "In this haunting, lyrical novel told from three perspectives, Sarel has just witnessed the violent murder of her parents. But she is not completely alone on the drought-ridden land. Nandi is the leader of a pack of dogs who looks out for her pups and for skinny Sarel-girl. Nandi knows they are all in trouble, and she knows, too, that a boy is coming—an escaped prisoner with the water song inside him. A hard-hitting but ultimately hopeful survival story."

  13. Thanks for the book suggestion. It sounds great. I have read two great books recently that have multiple perspectives. The Candymakers by Wendy Mass and Wonder by RJ Palacio. I am ordering multiple copies of both these books for my 6th grade classroom.

  14. Ah! Such cool posters! This would have made me so giddy giddy, as well. :)

  15. I will have to check out that book! I love your blog! I'm your newest follower :)

    Grooving Through Fourth Grade


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