Friday, March 28, 2008

Famous Author visits Emerson School!

The third graders were extremely fortunate to have the wonderful and gracious Robert Kimmel Smith visit last week. Mr. Smith is the author of The War with Grandpa, Chocolate Fever, Bobby Baseball, Mostly Michael, and The Squeaky Wheel.

He spoke to the students about his journey to becoming a writer, the process of writing ("read all the time!"), and how he gets his ideas for books. Before the visit, the third graders all read and reflected on some of his books in class and independently, and then prepared questions to ask. After his talk, Mr. Smith answered dozens of questions, from "What was your favorite prank in The War With Grandpa?" to "How old are your children now?" (As one of his children is now the parent of an Emerson student and sat in the audience, she could answer that one herself!) The third graders were brimming with excitement over meeting a real live author.

"How did you become an author?"

"He shook our hands!"

In conversation with students

A student illustration of a scene from The War With Grandpa.
(Image by Moriah.)

Thank you, Mr. Smith! Please come again!

Friday, March 21, 2008

What are you reading?

What are you reading?

Tell us something about it!

Should Ms. Claire read it? How about other Emerson students?


Safety & Respect Online

Learning to Comment on a Blog: What is Ethical?

We began our first blogging day with a presentation about learning to comment on a blog.

Following the directions and guidelines we discussed, write a comment (2-3 sentences) about the following:

What does it mean to have an "ethical online presence?"

  • Be safe: sign your comment with just your first name.
  • Be respectful: write your opinion and appreciate others' work.
  • Look your best! Write complete sentences, use correct punctuation, and check your spelling.

I can't wait to see what we do!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Read Naturally Podcast!

Starting soon, the star students of Read Naturally will be strutting their stuff in our new podcast! Listen as they read with fluency, expression, and panache.

Here is a sneak preview of our how podcast will sound.

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Monday, March 3, 2008

Getting ready for the California Young Reader Medal

This year, Emerson students in kindergarten through third grade are participating in the voting process... for the California Young Reader Medal, that is! Here's what they say on the official site:

Students may read and vote for books in any and all categories, but they must read all the books nominated in a category to be eligible to vote. Students read the nominated books from July through March and vote for their favorite. Teachers and librarians introduce the nominees to students, often in exciting and innovative ways. They provide ballots for the students, compile vote totals, and submit results to the CYRM committee.

All CYRM ballots must be postmarked by April 1 of each year.

We will be voting from March 17-21.

This year's nominees are:

The Giant Hug by Sandra Horning. Illustrated by Valeri Gorbachev. (Alfred A. Knopf, 2005)

Henry and the Buccaneer Bunnies by Carolyn Crimi. (Candlewick Press, 2005)

I Wanna Iguana by Karen Kaufman Orloff. Illustrated by David Catrow. (G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2004)

Dex: The Heart of a Hero (originally published as Superdog: The Heart of a Hero) by Caralyn Buehner. Illustrated by Mark Buehner. (Harper Collins Publishers, 2004)

Traction Man is Here! by Mini Grey. (Alfred A. Knopf, 2005)