Isn’t this supposed to be a slower time of the year for educators? I’m not feeling it. Wonderful, joyful, and miraculous family happenings have been filling each day, so it’s all good.
While rocking babies and playing with toddlers I’ve gotten through many great books this spring. Here are the highlights:
Mechanically Inclined by Jeff Anderson and Image Grammar by Harry Noden: Many of my preservice teachers feel ill-equipped to teach grammar. I read these two books to be able to recommend them (or not) as resources. There is a great debate in our field as to the teaching of grammar. Most agree that embedding grammar instruction within the writing process is effective. However, if students don’t have the language of grammar and a good grasp of basic mechanics, that embedded instruction is difficult to deliver. Each of these books tackles this problem. Mechanically Inclined speaks more to my comfort level. Anderson carefully collects data regarding real world mechanical issues with which his students needs help and pre-teaches some of those solutions so kids have the vocabulary and background knowledge to deal with them when needed. These would be excellent lessons to record as YouTube videos for kids to refer to as needed during the school year. Flip those lessons, people!
So, What Do They Really Know? Assessment That Informs Teaching and Learning by Cris Tovani: I love Cris Tovani’s work. There. The bias has been revealed. This book is helpful in many aspects.
With Rigor for All: Meeting Common Core Standards for Reading Literature by Carol Jago: Disclaimer–this is another author I admire greatly. If you don’t follow her on Twitter, you’re missing some great stuff.
Lest you think I’m no fun at all, here are the “light-hearted” fiction pieces completed this spring:
Left Neglected by Lisa Genova
Faith: A Novel by Jennifer Haigh
Dancing on Broken Glass by Ka Hancock
The Might Have Been by Joe Schuster
Calico Joe by John Grisham
Defending Jacob by William Landay
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy – Meh. I felt as though I had to read this one, you know? It’s one of those books. Didn’t like it, didn’t hate it. Glad I got through it, but wouldn’t want to do it again.
Can’t wait to see what the summer e-Reader will hold!
The post above was written at the beginning of summer and never completed as I hoped to add thumbnail shots of each book about which I wrote. That perfectionistic desire is gone, so here is an update of the books that occupied my time over the summer and throughout autumn:
Insurgent and Divergent by Veronica Roth – This fabulous YA trilogy will conclude when the author releases the final book in the series (currently untitled) this fall.
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Still Alice by Lisa Genova
The Age of Miracles: A Novel by Karen Thompson Walker
The Fallen Angel: A Novel (Gabriel Allon) by Daniel Silva
Freeman by Leonard Pitts – Loved this story.
The Prophet by Michael Koryta
The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry: A Novel by Rachel Joyce – Beautifully written!
The Absolutist by John Boyne
Love Anthony by Lisa Genova – This book create visuals that helps one see the world through the eyes of an autistic child.
One Last Strike: Fifty Years in Baseball, Ten and a Half Games Back, and One Final Championship Season by Tony LaRussa
Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
Tell the Wolves I’m Home: A Novel by Carol Rifka Brunt – A great read–highly recommended.
The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton
The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe – Fabulous!
The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes
Crossing to Safety by William Stegner – I LOVE this book.
Vanished: A Novel by Irene Hannon – A pleasant book that takes place in St. Louis.
The Good House by Ann Leary
Where’d You Go Bernadette: A Novel by Maria Semple
…and various chick lit books I read to keep up with my Mom. She tends to enjoy books written by authors such as Kristin Hannah, Nicholas Sparks, Dorthea Benton Frank and Mary Alice Monroe. They are great treadmill stories.