Thursday, August 18, 2022

Poem in My Pocket by Chris Tougas

        POEM IN MY POCKET by Chris Tougas illustrated by Josée Bisaillon is on the 2022 2x2 Reading List. This means many children ages 2 through 2nd grade will be exposed to the wonderfully-creative, rhyming text that sets the imagination rolling. Words "slipping, sliding, dipping, diving" from a "whirling, twirling, swirling wind" are cast about creating jumbled words to unscramble and new combinations. Finally the storm and rain fling the poetic words into the mud planting them which "set my story free!" causing an especially perfect tree to grow. 

    Students will wholeheartedly enjoy unscrambling the letters and realizing the clever twists to the new word combinations after reading POEM IN MY POCKET published by Kids Can Press. Teachers will have endless material for poetry month such as Poem in Your Pocket Day, creating rhyming poems, tossing words about so students can gather so many to create a whole new poem. I know teachers will recreate the special tree at the end and allow students to use the leaves to create poetry. 
  In the library, my lesson using this book will follow along with the story. I will give my students a rhyming poem. We will then cut the words apart and watch them whirl and twirl from the "wind". Then, each child will choose the same amount of mixed-up words to create a different poem entirely.  I may wait until April, but my excitement may not let me hold on that long. Since this is on the 2x2 Reading List, I will not have to! Poetry should be celebrated every day, and this book is a great place to start. 

National Poem in Your Pocket Day 2023 will be celebrated April 27. Lobit Education Village will celebrate poetry in many ways that day. Mark your calendars! Read poetry all year! Choose your favorite to carry in your pocket that day, or even better...write your own!


Wednesday, September 1, 2021

2x2 Goodness


The Texas 2x2 List has several gems on it this year, but none compare to the hilariously fun beginning chapter book SEE THE CAT by David LaRochelle. Two-year old babies will laugh as mommies share the pages while readers through 2nd grade will joyfully read and reread their first chapters. 

As a librarian, I am always trying to fit that just-right book to my students. 2nd grade is the time to introduce chapters. I cannot wait to share this book when my library classes start next week! SEE THE CAT will enchant those students that are ready for beginning chapter books. The nonintimidating text and simply adorable illustrations by Mike Wohnoutka will make my job easy this year. In the Mo Willems style of having the reader and story characters interact, LaRochelle creates a situation and conversation little readers will belly laugh over. Speech bubbles are always a friendly kid favorite allowing students to easily understand who is talking. LaRochelle uses them for the dog while pairing them with blank white spreads of mostly single, simple sentences on the opposite page. This is one book parents will want to buy for their children's library. One reading of SEE THE CAT will never be enough! This librarian is literarily laced and ready to kick off the 2x2 program next week. I'll have them reading out of my hands. 

Monday, November 18, 2019

Hello, Crabby!

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You taught your child to read, and now what? Acorn books are just right for those new readers! Scholastic's Acorn Readers, written by well-known authors, are geared toward kids ages 4-7 with simple text and colorful pictures. Color-coded speech bubbles guide children easily to the speaker. The simple, chapter-book-like format has students feeling accomplished from the start. There are correlated activities included at the back of each book and even an "About the Author" section.

Hello, Crabby!, written by Jonathan Fenske, is one from the humor series. Each story is about a grumpy, humorless crab named Crabby going about his day interacting with charming characters in his beach/ocean home. Will any get Crabby to smile? Children will especially enjoy the joke in the chapter titled "The Joke" while parents will relate to knowing a Crabby in their own lives! 

The more children read, the better readers they are. You've read to them since birth. Now sometimes, allow them the pleasure of reading to you. Soon they will become fully independent readers and not care to share this precious time with you. Take advantage of it now with simple books such as Acorn Readers. 

Monday, September 16, 2019

Duckworth the Difficult Child

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Just in! Duckworth the Difficult Child by Michael Sussman, illustrated by Julia Sarda is now in Lobit's Library. Difficult children and difficult parents alike will enjoy this ironic tale. The humor is not dark but leans gray, and the illustrations pair magically with the tale. Sarda's use of neutral tones and darker shades gives the book a just-right feel for the story. 

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Duckworth cannot convince his parents he's been swallowed by a snake since he is a "difficult" child. Using a parenting book to correct his "imagination", his parents' remedies are no help at all. Duckworth must use his own devices to escape his difficult situation. 

I love this book! It fits my sense of humor and is appealing to my taste in art. My favorite books are those where the story and illustrations fit so beautifully together. 

Older students will appreciate the irony and tone of the story more than the younger ones. However, younger ones will laugh at Duckworth's predicament and solution. 

Welcome to Lobit Duckworth. We are so happy to have you here! 

Friday, August 9, 2019

New Year, New Books!

This librarian has been joyfully at work creating a long list of must-have books for the new school year. Books from the 2x2 and Bluebonnet lists are already here awaiting their new readers. Students start back soon, so there is little time to spare! A new book in the hands is the finest back-to-school welcoming ritual. Here are a few of the books we are super excited about!

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STEGOTHESAURUS by Bridget Heos, illustrated by T. L. McBeth (Henry Holt and Company) is a new one students in grades K-3 (and teachers!) will love. Students will enjoy the playful language, simple pictures, and of course the dinosaurs. Teachers will love teaching synonyms with this "gotcha" companion. Lobit Library has several copies, and thank goodness! We are going to need them!
We are so excited about this book, we invited the author to visit in April. 

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ALMA AND HOW SHE GOT HER NAME by Juana Martinez-Neal (Candlewick Press) is a sweet story of a daddy telling his daughter about all the people after whom she was named. Her many names honor her grandparents and other family members. After hearing the stories, Alma appreciates each name for whom it represents. This book is a fabulous way to kick off the school year in the first two get-to-know-you weeks. Students could tell the story of each of their names after discussing it with their parents. Students will be proud their names have meaning and were chosen very particularly by their mothers and fathers. This 2x2 book will start great conversations both at home and at school. 

For the older students, this next one will be hard to keep on the shelves. 

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Students that love creepy stories will want to check out SHADOW WEAVER by MarcyKate Connolly (Sourcebooks). Emmeline has a strange magical talent. She can manipulate shadows, and her own shadow is her best friend Dar. Emmeline plays in the woods near her home freely crafting animals and playthings from shadows. She plays her favorite game of eavesdropping by masking herself in shadows. All is fun and games until she overhears a conversation about herself. Complications arise. Is Dar just a shadow after all?  Will Dar protect Emmeline when they are forced to run from home? Although we have four copies of this book, students will be using our hold system for this great read!

Lobit Library will welcome so many new books to its shelves this year. We cannot wait for students to find their new favorite. We all know everyday is a great day to read! 

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

What Are You Reading?

I always wonder what people are reading. When I ask, I hold my breath and hope they answer with a title and not "I don't have time to read," or something similar. I must admit of late the thing I read most are quilting tutorials. I strive to improve through the guidance of others! Regardless of what it is, I am always happy to hear a positive response. 

Presently, I am somewhat disheartened about the lack of interest in books in general. A public library in our neighboring town is weeding huge amounts of books due to an upcoming renovation and shelf removal. In a roundabout way, they offered me the books. I was ecstatic! These books are beautiful, library bound, and current. Who wouldn't want these? Many actually. I brought them to my school to give away to teachers and staff. Only a few took a few books. Then I offered them to my neighbors. A couple of people happily took them. Most told me either they don't have room for them or they don't read. I'm offering a whole box of beautiful books FREE, and yet...I truly was amazed at the lack of interest. One woman's treasure is another's trash I suppose. 

As much as I would love to think that books and reading are vitally important to everyone, I know they are not. As a librarian, my quest is to change that. Read. Read newspapers (online or print!). Read dictionaries. Read cookbooks. Read biographies. Read comic books. Read anything! Just read. And if you need a real book-a library-bound real book, come see me. I promise you will not walk away empty handed. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2019


If you are a Haiku lover like me, you will certainly enjoy H IS FOR HAIKU. Although this collection was just published by Penny Candy books in 2018, the poems were written many years before by poet Sydell Rosenberg long famous for her haiku. Gathered by Sydell's daughter Amy Losak one for each letter of the alphabet, the poems fit beautifully with the art of illustrator Sawsan Chalabi. The colors of each page and style of art lead the older readers to a time of their childhood and introduces the younger reader to this beautiful art form. The first poem many children attempt is in the haiku format. Children seem to easily understand its 3 lines of 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables. 

Teachers will also fall for this book because it is so easy to share, the ABC format, and the power packed in its few pages. Teaching haiku has never been easier! 

This page is one of my favorites! As both a book and library lover, this haiku spoke to me. The subject and the artwork make me smile.  
We have it here in our Lobit Library. I know it will be a popular one with both our teachers and students. I think I will go share this now and have my students write haiku. Check out H IS FOR HAIKU!