Category: Explore

Gittel’s Journey: An Ellis Island Story by Lesléa Newman

Summary Imagine leaving your country, all by yourself, at the age of ten. Now see yourself arriving in a new country. No one is there to meet you, and you don’t understand the language. Imagine what that must feel like. This is Gittel’s story….

Look at the Weather by Britta Teckentrup

Look at the Weather by Britta Teckentrup compels readers to wonder about the weather. This lesson idea guides learners in a contemplative art exercise that supports the standards.

Dreamers by Yuyi Morales

Summary Yuyi Morales reminds us how important libraries are in her latest book. When Morales first arrived in America with her young son, she didn’t know how to speak English. She was afraid and unsure of her new surroundings. One day, she visited the…

A Big Mooncake for Little Star

  Summary A mooncake is a Chinese pastry that is popular during the Mid-Autumn Festival.  The festival celebrates the harvest when the moon is full. The combination of the moon and the mooncake inspired Grace Lin to write A Big Mooncake for Little Star….

Big Machines: The Story of Virginia Lee Burton by Sherri Duskey Rinker and John Rocco

Summary Think of a favorite author who is also an illustrator. Do you ever wonder about their process? Do they write the story and then work on the illustrations? For Virginia Lee Burton, the illustrations took center stage. Big Machines: The Story of Virginia…

Islandborn by Junot Diaz

How do we keep our family history alive? In this insightful and poignant book, Junot Diaz examines just how we keep our stories alive.  In an age when immigration is a debate in our nation and tops the headlines each day, we consider the…

How to Code a Sandcastle by Josh Funk

Are you teaching learners how to code? If so, you must add How to Code a Sandcastle by Josh Funk to your lesson plans. A young girl, by the name of Pearl, narrates the thought process behind coding.  She begins by introducing her robot friend, Pascal….

Zen Shorts by Jon J Muth

  Summary How can we introduce the concept of mindfulness with our students? Self regulation and focus are key to learning in all settings, yet often we struggle with just how to begin the conversation.  Zen Shorts by Jon J Muth, is an engaging…

Thank You, Earth: A Love Letter To Our Planet by April Pulley Sayre

Summary Think of a time when your whole being fully appreciated nature. What did you see? What did you hear? In Thank You, Earth: A Love Letter To Our Planet, we see incredible images of our beautiful home. Gorgeous photos of plants, animals and landscapes…

Ada Lovelace, Poet of Science: The First Computer Programmer

Summary Where does creativity come from? Steve Jobs once said it evolves from “connecting things.” The story of Ada Lovelace supports this idea. Energized by a curious imagination as a child, Ada designed fantastic creations. Her mother worried about Ada’s wild notions and sent…

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