Student February Connections


 

Snowy Investigations

Let it snow !  With the end of winter on it's way, there is still time to investigate some of the wintery animals and scences from areas where the snow continues to fall.  Check out these books and then investigate the "snowy" links:

 

 The Three Snow Bears by Jan Brett   ISBN: 978-0-399-24792-7

Try this delightful rendition of Goldilocks as told with an Inuit girl whose sled dog search leads to a tempting igloo.  All readers will find many arctic animals and original Inuit designs/items within the story borders that Jan Brett is so well known for.  Great reading discovery complete with mischievous action.

Author's website

 Nutik, the Wolf Pup by Jean Craighead George   ISBN: 0-06-028164-2

Amaroq lives at the top of the world with his big sister Julie.  When Julie brings him a wolf pup to take care of, Amaroq is warned not to "fall in love with Nutik or your heart will break when the wolves come to take their pup home."  With days spent "romping and playing" with the wolf pup, will Amaroq be strong enough to let the pup rejoin it's family?  This retelling of an adventure from George's book Julie of the Wolves is complimented with perfected imagery crafted by Ted Rand, a definite must read to own find.

Author's website

  A Penquin Pup for Pinkerton by Steven Kellogg  ISBN: 0-8037-2536-1

What joy and pride Pinkerton feels when he is put in charge of an abandoned egg.  Hilarious moments are to be had as Pinkerton tries to keep that egg warm and safe.  Of course, the egg is part of Pinkerton's imagination with a lot of heart keeping him going.

Author's website

 Mystery on Everest by George Mallory   ISBN: 0-439-26167-8

In answer to "Why climb Mt. Everest?" George Mallory said, "Because it's there."  On three different attempts, Mallory was driven to reach the top of Everest.  Would reaching that goal be worth the ultimate price, his life?  This is a great photobiography about a man with extraordinary ambition and desire, his journaling through pictures and letters is as remarkable of a journey as his attempts to accomplish his "haunting" dream to stand on the top of the largest mountain in the world.

George Mallory History

  Over the Top of the World: Explorer Will Steger's Trek Across the Arctic by Will Steger  

ISBN: 0-590-84861-5

Once again a fantastic journey awaits you as you read the daily logs and see the photos about this trek that took place in 1995.  Filled with false starts, bitterly cold winds, freezing temperatures and sled dogs that will save their lives or try dying....this expedition is one that needs to be shared and read by you.  On the edge pace with just the right breaking points, you will devour this photobiography of all those who were willing to "go where most men have never gone!"

Will Steger's website

 

Penguins Around the World 

International Penguin Conservation Group

Antarctic Penguins 

Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center 

Antarctica Wildlife Center 

Arctic Animals

 

Winter weather watch: http://teacher.scholastic.com/activities/wwatch/winter_storms/?eml=TNL/20090106/TNL

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

"I can only say that there is not a man living who wishes more sincerely than I do to see a plan adopted for the abolition of slavery"

President George Washington

 

Black History Month 

America's African-American Heritage.....

America's History Unfolding.....

United We Stand !

How often do you consider your freedom?  Every one in America, at one time or another had relatives who felt that freedom was worth risking their lives for.  Many hoped and prayed for freedom because they had been enslaved either in their native land or within America's boundaries.  Did you know that slavery still exists today, not just around the world but right here in the United States.  What does it mean to be enslaved?  What would you do to obtain a freedom that was your right and yet so unjustly denied?  This month may be a month for many celebratory themes and units in your classrooms, but remember every day of every year someone is not free because of their skin's color.......their faith......the way they dress.....the way they look.....or worse the fact that they have a life that someone else wants to control.

 

The Underground Railroad

I feel like I can't ever learn enough about this most famous group of people who helped so many find shelter, food, and protection while so many sought their freedom.  Check out some of these amazing links, teach yourself about those who fled in order to be free:

National Geographic Underground Railroad: Online Virtual Experience 

National Register: Aboard the Underground Railroad

Freedom Center 

 Did you know that they had special codes for let runaway slaves know if it was safe to travel from one station to the next?  Folk songs were sung, the stars at night provided a map, and quilts were designed to let those on the journey to freedom know if it was safe and which house was a station.  Learn more about this great "wireless" communication..........

Pathways to Freedom: Maryland & the Underground Railroad Quilts 

Underground Railroad Quilt Code 

Owen Sound's Black History: Quilts 

 

    

 How much do you know about those who invented most of our daily life "gadgets" or what about those who invested their lives in discovering better medications or better living standards?  Check out these great links for some moments of browsing and learning....

Black History 

Black History Biographies

AT&T Knowledge Network: African American History

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Welcome to this month's reading investigations.  Here you will find suggested book reviews complete with author websites and literary connection links.  Since this month has so many wonderful historical calendar dates, I have listed the books and links according to the event dates.

Have fun with you investigations,

Mrs K

 

Groundhogs Day: Feb. 2

  Punxsutawney Phyllis by Susanna Leonard Hill   ISBN: 9-7808-23418-725

Just imagine, you've grown up watching the most famous groundhog in the world predicting the beginning of spring.  Now consider that it's time for Punxsutawney Phil to retire and "turn-over" this most important job to someone who is well learned, very alert, intelligent, and of course "destined" for the job.  Unfortunately, the job has always been handed-down to only males...will Phyllis have a chance to carry on this important tradition?

 

   Shadow Chaser: From the Land of Barely There by Stephen Cosgrove  ISBN: 0-88070-220-6

All nestled within his bed, grizzled old groundhog Gabriel was dreaming the winter days away.  Being afraid of imaginary night creatures and fearsome winter shadows, Gabriel wishes to stay in his warm willow den.  Yet, when the Land of Barely There creatures begin visiting him....he must muster up the courage to appear up above for this day is the day that all are anxiously awaiting his forecast.  It is once again Groundhogs Day, so come on Gabriel, "it's time for you to look for your shadow!"  Most readers know Stephen Cosgrove for his wonderful Serendipity series, well here is another series of delightful characters with character building situations that inspires readers to reach within and make the right choices.

Author website

 

 

Official Punxsutawney website

Groundhog videos

Learn to make: Shadow puppets 

Groundhog Concentration 

Wack-a-Ground Hog 

 Valentine's Day: February 14 

   Franklin's Valentines by Paulette Bourgeois   ISBN: 0-590-13001-3

Do you remember the first time you got your specially selected box of Valentine's and you sat down at the table to begin writing them for your classmates?  Well that is just what Franklin is doing, he is so excited and he can't wait to get to school to pass them out.  The only catch is it's the day after the class's Valentine's party.  Why didn't Franklin have them for the party, well you will have a fun time discovering the reason by reading this wonderful story.

Author's website 

  I Love You When....... by John Edward Hasse   ISBN: 0-375-81063-3

A book valentine, what a perfect way to spend Valentine's day !  This wonderful poem is illustrated with many "animal-family" snapshots which portrays all the reasons for loving a little one in your life. "I loved you when you were little.....I will love you forever---no matter how BIG you grow!"  Simple messages, with endearing moments.  Take the time to share this reading moment with all those little ones in your life.......

 

  A Peanuts Valentine by Charles M Schulz   ISBN: 0-345-45941-5

Fifty delightful years of Valentine's Day comic strips are gathered in this one collection for all ages to enjoy.  What would Valentine's Day be without Lucy trying to give her love advice or can you imagine how dreadfully sad Charlie Brown would be if noone cared enough to hope that he would receive his first Valentine? Quick reading moments of fun-loving smiles mixed with our own memories of Valentine's Day parties. A must read to purchase, for these comic strips never age.

Author's museum site  

 The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn   ISBN: 0-87868-585-5

Going to school can be tough for everyone.  In this story, Mama Racoon shares a special story about the love that can be carried with you where ever you are.  This lovely story endears your heart to the possibility that someone's love kiss is with you whenever you might need it.

Author's website

Child Welfare League of America 

  Saint George and the Dragon by Margaret Hodges   ISBN: 0-316-36789-1

In this stunning retelling of the medieval folk tale, the Red Cross Knight slays the dreadful dragon that has been terrorizing the countryside and brings peace and joy back to the land.  Trina Schart Hyman's story-telling illustrations enhance the ancient tale with borders that are true to the stain-glass window craft of old.

Author's history

  The Valentine Bears by Eve Bunting   ISBN: 0-89919-313-7

What would you do if you were always hibernating on Valentine's Day?  Well for Mr. and Mrs. Bear that was their dilema, of course now there is a wonderful surprise that will give this couple their chance at celebrating this day for sweethearts.  Jan Brett's illustrations compliment this story of winter with black and white sketches with just the right splash of red.

Author's website

Illustrator's website

 

The Legend of St George and the Dragon

Fact Moster: Valentine's Day Features

Valentine's Word Drop: Not so easy of a word scramble game

Valentine's Word Scramble: How quick can you turn those letters to spell the mystery word?

 Valentine Gaming: online puzzles......printable color sheets.....online word searches 

 

 

Children's Poetry Connections

Giggle Poetry Fun 

 Poetry4Kids 

 Poetry Archive 

MS Poets 

 Teen Ink 

 Teen Poetry Slam   Teen Poetry Slam Podcast 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

  President's Day

          February 16

                                                                              

 "All my life I have tried to pluck a thistle and plant a flower wherever the flower would grow in thought and mind."

President Lincoln

Lincoln's Birthday: February 12

  Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman   ISBN: 0-395-51848-2

Take a walk in Lincoln's shoes as Freedman weaves the history and personality of President Lincoln along with the strands from photos which creates a portrait of this most inspiring leader that America has ever known. As a man who stood head and shoulders above most men, his beliefs lead us as a country beyond what was wrong and into a nation of justice for all.  "As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master; this expresses my idea of democracy--"

Author's biography

  Where Lincoln Walked by Raymond Bial   ISBN: 0-8027-8630-8

In 1809, Mrs. Lincoln retreated to her corn husk bed under the warmth of their bear skin covers.  This would be the day for a miracle, you see noone was available to help her give birth and the baby was in trouble....from out of the night a mysterious lady appeared and with her help and a promise to name the baby Abraham, American history was reborn.  This photo-biography tells the life journey of Abe's rugged youth into that "dark evening in Ford's Theatre."  Simple text with photo captions is perfect for all young readers.

Author's website

 Me and Willie and Pa by F. N. Monjo   ISBN: 671-65211-7

This biography is written in the first person narrative of young Tad Lincoln.  Recalling some of the greatest moments in our histroy, Tad explains the man behind the white house photos.  This unforgettable book must have the life of new readers, for it places the son of a President into the midst of history allowing today's readers to remember that history is in the making as they themselves are growing up.

Tad Lincoln's History

 "Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other"

Lincoln Site Tours

Lincoln Bicentennial

Gettysburg Address

Lincoln Penny: 2009 

The Color of Lincoln: Photo Slide Show 

 

 Washington's Birthday: February 22

 "Let your heart feel for the afflictions and distress of everyone, and let your hand give in proportion to your purse"

 George Washington: The Man Who Would Not Be King by Stephen Krensky   ISBN: 0-590-437-30-5

More than America's first President, Washington had a "strong will, solid values, and a big heart."  Why did he refuse to be America's first King?  How did he set the standards for our country and every future President?  This biography explores most of Washington's adult life.  There are so many wonderful avenues to explore once you've taught yourself about those who risked all to give us freedom in America.

Author's website

 George Washington: Young Leader by Augusta Stevenson   ISBN: 0-02-042150-8

From the time that George was toddling, he was a leader among his peers.  This biographical journey is written more as an unfolding story than as a bunch of facts.  Stevenson's historical "storyteller" voice continues to introduce America's youngest students to the discoveries of those who have inspired us as our nation began it's quest for freedom.  Simple format with pen and ink sketches brings Washington's life into view, a life worth remembering.

 

Washington’s Mount Vernon

"It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible"

President George Washington

The White House: Presidential Biographies

The White House Virtural Tour

Our White House

Biographies Website: http://www.biography.com             Bio for Kids: http://www.biography.com/bio4kids/index.jsp

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Looking for a new title?  Try these links for those moments when you "just can't find" that right book: 

Anniston Library: Read ALikes 

 

Planet Esme Book Reviews (Gr. 3+)

 

YALSA Teen Reads for Young Adults

 

Shmoop: Literature Studies (HS+)

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

  Check into your Public Library for great February discoveries and book club options:

  Don't forget you can always put any title on hold at your local library just click the following Library link:

 

Fort Vancouver Regional Library: http://www.fvrl.org

Camas Public Library: http://www.ci.camas.wa.us/library

Multnomah County Library: http://www.multcolib.org

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

With full days back in school, you might need just some time to explore beyond your classroom, make the connection into a cyberspace classroom. These electronic pathfinders will ignite your engines and blast you into the safety galaxy of Internet explorations.

 

Cyberspace Journeys

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

February Games

Checkers

Kids News Room Games: ping-pong....tic-tac-toe....and more

 Connect the Dots 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  

  Fall Finds

Winter Blasts

February Joy

Spring Discoveries

Summer Fun

  Back to Green Mountain Library Front Page

 

2009