Monday, September 1, 2014

Which book trailers are you playing this week, Mr. Schu?

My students checked out 1,529 books and placed 237 books on hold during the first full week of school. I started new units with every class, wore a different #kidlit sticker every day, gave away two boxes of books, and told the first and second graders that Jon Klassen and Mac Barnett are visiting our school library in October to celebrate Sam and Dave Dig a Hole

I plan on playing the following book trailers this week. Maybe you'll play some of them for your students, too. Happy watching! Happy reading! Happy smiling! 

This Orq. (He Cave Boy.) by David Elliott and Lori Nichols  

Circle, Square, Moose! by Kelly Bingham and Paul O. Zelinsky 

Telephone by Mac Barnett and Jen Corace

Captain Underpants and the Tyrannical Retaliation of the Turbo Toilet 2000 by Dav Pilkey

The Angry Little Puffin by Timothy Young

Nightmares by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller

The Nuts: Bedtime at the Nut House by Eric Litwin and Scott Magoon

Star Wars: Jedi Academy: Return of the Padawan by Jeffrey Brown

Flora and the Penguin by Molly Idle

The Imaginary by A.F. Harrold and Emily Gravett

Sisters by Raina Telgemeier

Quest by Aaron Becker 

Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Little Elliot, Big City Trifecta

The Nerdy Book Club, Colby Sharp, and I are celebrating one of the best books of 2014: Mike Curato's Little Elliot, Big City. Adorable Elliot is not a stranger to this blog. I premiered his book trailer, took him on my road trip, and read his story to my kindergartners and first graders. If you haven't already read Little Elliot, Big City, I hope today's trifecta inspires you to buy a copy from your favorite independent bookshop. 

Before you head out on a little adventure to read Mike Curato's nerdy essay and Colby Sharp's post, please take a look at how Mike finished my sentences. I wrote the words in red, and he wrote the words in black. Many, many, many thanks, Mike! I adore Elliot and look forward to ALL of his future stories. 

Little, Elliot, Big City tells the story of friendship and perspective through the eyes of a little polka-dotted elephant with a great big heart.

The illustrations for Little, Elliot, Big City are the pieces of art that I always wanted to make. They are pencil drawings that I scan and color in Photoshop. For Little Elliot, I like working in a muted color palette to add to the nostalgia of the period.

Mike created this window display for Books of Wonder
Elliot’s apartment can be a bit challenging for him, since he’s so small. You’ll often find him climbing something. Elliot discovered a new purpose for his favorite books; when he’s not reading them, he’s usually climbing them.

Yahoo! Merrymakers is making a Little Elliot plush! There is no release date, but expect to give him a hug sometime next year. Here’s a photo of an early prototype:

Cupcakes are one of the five basic food groups...right? Regardless, they are the main staple of white polka-dotted elephants.

Picture books are my dream, and now my reality!

Reading is vital.

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me where does Elliot live? Well, many people assume that he lives in Manhattan, but he actually lives in Brooklyn and commutes to Manhattan for his treats, just like me!

Mike Curato has the fortune of possessing a designer's brain, an illustrator's heart, and an artist's vision. You can find him on any given day walking around the city eating a cupcake (or thinking about it).

Macmillian is giving away a copy of Little Elliot, Big City, a Little Elliot tote bag, and stickers. 

Rules for the Giveaway 

1. It will run from 8/31 to 11:59 p.m. on 9/1. 

2. You must be at least 13. 

3. If you win, please pay it forward. 

Borrow Little Elliot, Big City from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 

Head on over to the Nerdy Book Club's blog to read Mike's essay. 

Don't forget to visit Colby Sharp's blog

Tuesday, August 26           
Wednesday, August 27     
Teach Mentor Texts | @mentortexts
Thursday, August 28        
 Read. Write. Reflect. | @katsok
Friday, August 29               
Kit Lit Frenzy | @alybee930
Saturday, August 30         
 Daddy Mojo | @daddymojo
Sunday, August 31             
The Trifecta:
Sharp Reads | @colbysharp
Watch. Connect. Read. | @mrschureads
Nerdy Book Club | @nerdybookclub
Monday, September 1 

Miss Print | @miss_prin

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Newbery Honor Challenge: 2005

Dear Mr. Sharp, 

You're posting your 2003 Newbery Honor Challenge video today, and I am posting my 2005 Newbery Honor Challenge video. We will be back on the same page next week. 

I hope you have a fun three-day weekend. 



P.S. I accidentally said Flora and the Flamingo instead of Flora and the Penguin. I'm sure I'll make that mistake many times. 


Click here to watch Mr. Sharp's video

Newbery Medalist Russell Freedman talks about his name. 

Listen to Marian Anderson sing "America (My Country, 'Tis of Thee)." 

Borrow The Voice that Challenged a Nation: Marian Anderson and the Struggle for Equal Rights from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Author-illustrator Melissa Guion

Happy, happy, happy, happy Friday! I'm celebrating the end of a busy and rewarding week with author-illustrator Melissa Guion. She dropped by to discuss penguins, school libraries, riding a bicycle, and reading. I wrote the words in red, and she wrote the words in black. Thank you, Melissa! 

Baby Penguins Everywhere! and Baby Penguins Love Their Mama! are my first and second books. Between them, they earned exactly zero starred reviews, but they are my proudest achievement. I’m grateful to be making books and I hope to do it for a long time.

I created the illustrations for Baby Penguins Love Their Mama! twice. I work traditionally, so when a finished painting needed to be changed, I did it all over again.

The best thing about penguins is their dignity.

School libraries only LOOK innocent.

Picture books are for everyone.

One of my favorite things is a song my friend Kurt Dahle wrote for Baby Penguins Everywhere.  I meant to use it for a book trailer but didn’t have time to make one. Matthew Winner had an interesting suggestion, that I invite students to create a video set to the music. Maybe I should do that!

Reading is like riding a bike, which my daughter is learning to do as I write this.  Hard at first, but once you can do it, you enjoy it for the rest of your life.

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me to do this a long time ago. Just kidding. I’m so glad we met.

I am giving away one copy of Baby Penguins Love Their Mama! 

Rules for the Giveaway

1. It will run from 8/29 to 11:59 p.m. on 8/31. 

2. You must be at least 13. 

3. Please pay it forward. 

Borrow Melissa Guion's books from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Happy Book Birthday to Brown Girl Dreaming!

I am honored to share a birthday with Brown Girl Dreaming's book birthday. Although the book officially comes out today, I have already read it twice. I plan on starting it for a third time later today. 

I am celebrating my special day by giving away two copies of Jacqueline Woodson's Brown Girl Dreaming

Rules for the Giveaway 

1. It will end at 11:59 p.m. 

2. You must be at least 13. 

3. If you win, please pay it forward. 

Travis Jonker and Margie are also giving away copies of Brown Girl Dreaming. Thank you! 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Book Trailer Premiere - Telephone by Mac Barnett and Jen Corace

Hey, you! Yes, you! You're looking extra nice today. I have the perfect book trailer and book for you to share with all of your friends--Telephone by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Jen Corace. After you finishing watching the book trailer, please turn to the person sitting next to you and tell them to watch it. Tell them to tell ten strangers throughout the day about it. Phone your aunts, uncles, cousins, and your favorite independent bookshops. Pass it on and on. Before we know it, everyone will know about Telephone. I just hope nobody mishears or misinterprets this original message. 

Ready! Set! Press Play! 

Telephone by Mac Barnett; illustrated by Jen Corace | Chronicle Books | Publication date: September 9, 2014. 

Mac Barnett is the New York Times bestselling author of several picture books, including Extra Yarn, which won a Caldecott Honor, the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, and the E. B. White Read- Aloud Award. Mac lives in Berkeley, California.

Jen Corace has illustrated a number of children’s books, including Little Pea. She lives in Providence, Rhode Island.

The #SharpSchu Book Club Met Last Night

Illustration credit: Brian Won and Dave Roman 

Hooray for the Sharp-Schu Book Club! We gathered together last night to discuss Circa Now and Hooray for Hat! Did you miss the chat? Fear not! You can read through the archive below. :) 

Illustration credit: Brian Won 
Thank you, Amber McRee Turner and Brian Won!