For me today, the Kidlitosphere news pales in comparison to the real-world news that I'm an aunt! Although this is one of those times that I wish I didn't live 3000 miles away from my family, I'm still very happy for my brother and sister-in-law, and looking forward to meeting my new niece. And, of course, I'm looking forward to buying her lots of books.
Meanwhile, there has been a lot going on around the Kidlitosphere this past week. Here are some links for your perusal:
The biggest news is that Betsy Bird has started reporting the results of her Top 100 Children's Books Poll at A Fuse #8 Production. Betsy asked readers to share their list of top 100 children's books of all time. She's compiled the results, and is reporting the list in small chunks, complete with commentary and assorted covers for each book. These posts (see 100-91, 90-86, 85-81) are truly an amazing resource, filled with quotes and memories about beloved books, new and old. Even though we're only 20 titles in, I would venture to suggest that the completed list is going to make an excellent recommended reading list. In fact, I actually dreamed about reading these posts last night. Stay tuned to A Fuse #8 Production for the rest of the Top 100.
For anyone who might be snowed in this week, Joan S. at the First Book blog suggests: "Settling in to enjoy a GOOD BOOK doesn’t require electricity or a wireless connection. Satellite dishes may be covered with snow, wires may be down, but READING A BOOK just takes a quiet nook and a willingness to enjoy the moment."
I noticed two posts today about creative classroom activities dedicated to popular books. At Educating Alice, Monica Edinger shares a mural that her students created after reading When You Reach Me together as a class. And at Learn Me Sumthin', Tony's class is tracking Percy Jackson's adventures using Google Maps. Here's a snippet from Tony's post: "Some very unexpected and wonderful things started to happen. The classroom conversations about writing became stronger, because I think the kids really started to see the connection that fiction, even fantasy like The Lightning Thief, is more 'real' when the author can layer in events, details that are real. Also the importance of setting, which can get lost of 4th grade writers is now more apparent."
Speaking of classrooms, Everybody Wins! reports: "MrsP.com has created some beautiful literary-inspired valentines -- that you can download for free at www.MrsP.com. They are perfect for teachers or mentors to use in the classroom this week. They are created for readers of all-ages and perfect to give to the book lovers in your life." Here's the direct link. They are very cute!
And in other Percy Jackson news, Amanda from A Patchwork of Books reports: "The Guardian has an awesome interview with author Rick Riordan (of Percy Jackson fame) about his son's dyslexia and ADHD preventing him from enjoying reading. Well Mr. Percy Jackson's story helped fix that!". Of course, the Lightning Thief movie comes out on Friday, too, so we'll be hearing lots more about Percy in the coming weeks.
David Elzey is writing a series (based on work that he did as part of a graduate residency) on building better boy books. You can find part 1 here and part 2 here. Part 1 is introductory, while Part 2 is about grabbing the attention of boys by using humor. David says: "there are subtleties to some forms of humor that boys respond to above others that can be incorporated into fiction. Knowing these elements might help explain what makes many boys – both readers and characters – tick."
At Booklights, Susan Kusel discusses reading Charlotte's Web aloud to young children (who might not cope well with Charlotte's death). Susan notes: "As a librarian, I frequently get asked what age the book is appropriate for. My answer is always that it depends on your child. Will they be able to handle it?" Commenters seem to agree.
Also at Booklights, Terry Doherty has launched a new monthly column called A Prompt Idea. She says: "Each month, I'll talk about writing and suggest ways to add writing to children's literacy diet. Even if your child isn't ready to put pen to paper, prompts can open the doors to building vocabulary, honing communication skills, and being creative. Varying the outlets for writing and communicating is as important as offering different types of reading materials."
Abby (the) Librarian and Kelly of Stacked are starting a new monthly roundup of posts about audiobooks. Abby says: "We want to encourage people to listen to audiobooks and to post about them. We want to provide a place for people to find out about great audiobooks."
The Cybils winners will be announced this Sunday (Valentine's Day). In the meantime, the Cybils blog has been running a fun series about the inside scoop on the nominees in various categories. Here's Part I, Part II, and Part III. I continue to be wowed that Deputy Editor Sarah Stevenson manages to keep up her own blog, and keep coming up with creative content for the Cybils blog, too.
- A new edition of the monthly Notes from the Horn Book e-newsletter is now available. This edition focuses on the recent ALA award winners. Roger Sutton has more details.
- Kate Coombs shares a lovely story at Book Aunt about the enthusiastic response to Caps for Sale from a 6-year-old Latina child being treated for cancer. As Kate says: "that, my friends, is what children's books are all about."
- I'm not generally a big interview person. But I did enjoy Jules' recent "questions over breakfast with Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm" post at 7-Imp. There are many Babymouse references, as you might imagine.
- Steph Su shares her thoughts on Team Peeta vs. Team Gale. If you don't know who I'm talking about, do give The Hunger Games and Catching Fire a look. Me, I'm Team Gale, and hoping to hear more from him in Book 3.
- This week's Nonfiction Monday roundup is hosted by Mary Ann Scheuer at Great Kid Books. Mary Ann also hosted last week's Poetry Friday roundup. Her linking muscles must be tired out!
- Laurel Snyder wants to start a campaign to get Ruth M. Arthur's A Candle in Her Room back in print. I would certainly buy it (or any of Arthur's others) - I adored her books when I was in elementary school.
- Shrinking Violet Promotions has a post by Laurie Helgoe (author of Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength) about how to gather with introverts (who, by nature, resist gathering).
- Colleen Mondor has written a new article for Bookslut about diversity in young people's literature. Liz B has some follow-on discussion at Tea Cozy, as does Colleen at Chasing Ray. See also Mitali Perkins' proposal for faces and YA book covers at Mitali's Fire Escape.
- Sarah/aquafortis has an interesting post at Finding Wonderland about how young adult literature often crosses genres, with YA novels appearing "between the cracks." I love this about YA (and children's) literature.
- Another Sarah reports at the Reading Zone about a lovely success story, in which a student learns that "reading is fun". Who knew?
- For more Kidlitosphere links, check out Laura's Superbowl Sunday Links post at Bib-Laura-graphy.
And that's it for today. I'm feeling much better having the starred items in my reader cleaned up, and I'm off to watch the Duke/UNC game with a friend. Happy reading, all!