Monday, April 8, 2013

The Brainstorm Plus: Songkran reads

Bookish Stuff

BookRiot recently asked readers to send in fiction titles that address social justice. It's a pretty interesting list. I'm not advocating all the titles on there, but there are many great ones. Social Justice in Fiction: A Reading List. I'm trying to think what I would add... There's a whole wealth of middle grade fiction titles that aren't even touched on here. Like Wonder, Rules, Among the Hidden...yep, this list could take a while.

Here's the Secondary Teacher's Reading Recommendations for Songkran Break:

Among the Hidden (Shadow Children, #1)Goodnight Mister Tom
  Wonder  The Mysterious Howling (The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place #1)  Divergent (Divergent, #1)  Insurgent (Divergent, #2)  Unwind (Unwind, #1)  UnWholly (Unwind, #2)  UnStrung (Unwind, #1.5)    The Giver (The Giver, #1)  The Witch of Blackbird Pond  Rules  The Last Dragonslayer  The Song of the Quarkbeast (The Last Dragonslayer, #2)  Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, #1)  Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles, #2)  Elantris  A Voice in the Wind (Mark of the Lion, #1)  An Echo in the Darkness (Mark of the Lion, #2)  As Sure as the Dawn (Mark of the Lion, #3)  Candle in the Darkness (Refiners Fire #1) 

Till We Have FacesOut of the Silent Planet (Space Trilogy, #1)  Fahrenheit 451  The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography  The Reason for God  Generous Justice: How God's Grace Makes Us Just  Power Evangelism 
The Case for a Creator: A Journalist Investigates Scientific Evidence That Points Toward God  Disappointment with God: Three Questions No One Asks Aloud

Education Tools, Resources, Ideas, Etc.

As we move towards BYOD here is a list of 8 Great New Web Tools for Teachers. Probably the most exciting one for teachers is the which allows you to broadcast presentations to anyone, but there are several other great tools in this list.

Teachers, are you looking for word games for your students? Free Technology for Teachers suggests exploring the games available through Build a Word Kingdom on

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Brainstorm Plus: Songkran reads for elem

Bookish Stuff

Since we are going on Songkran Break in just a week from today, I'm gathering teacher recommendations for books kids should read during their free time (when they aren't participating in the water fights). Here's what I've received so far for Elementary reading recommendations. I'll share the Middle and High School recommendations later.

Picture Books for Elementary

The Dark  Scaredy Squirrel (Scaredy Squirrel)  Willie Was Different: A Children's Story  Tuesday   Love You Forever  Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Chapter Books for Middle Grades

The Year of the Dog  Redwall (Redwall, #1)  The Ruins of Gorlan (Ranger's Apprentice, #1)  Esperanza Rising  Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's Moving Castle, #1)  Fairest (Enchanted, #3)  The Secret Garden 

Non-fiction for Elementary

The Remarkable Benjamin Franklin Bridges!: Amazing Structures to Design, Build & Test  Leonardo da Vinci for Kids: His Life and Ideas, 21 Activities 

Teaching Tools, Resources, Ideas, Etc.

TeachThought just had an article that shared 10 Ways to Support Learning Styles with Concept Mapping.

Also came across this very interesting article on a study about the relation of math and hand gestures and learning. Gestures Help Listeners Learn Better.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Brainstorm Plus: Book spine poems

Bookish Stuff

The high school Creative Writing Class came in yesterday and had fun creating book spine poems. It was fun to see other teachers and students in the Media Center get swept up in the creativity. Here's a couple of the book spine poems they came up with. The last one in the list was a collaborative effort...

Some of the book spine poems I made to help inspire the students are now up on SLJ's 2013 Book Spine Poem Gallery. There are lots of other creative entries there too.

Education Tools, Resources, Ideas, Etc.

Reading and writing are integral to just about any subject. A fellow educator shared some tips on how to help students get the most out of reading on her blog. Ms Watanabe has some fabulous ideas and includes some great posters. You need to check it out. Close Read Complex Text, and Annotate with Tech -- Part 1