Friday, September 27, 2013

Edible art- Candy sushi!

Check out the candy sushi our Middle Schoolers made during our Edible Art program!  Join us again for Edible Art on Friday November 22, 3:30pm in the Craft Room.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Rotten Pumpkin, our favorite book for fall 2013!

From School Library Journal

Gr 1-4–Schwartz meticulously tracks the life cycle of a pumpkin/jack-o'-lantern as it decays and eventually gives birth to new pumpkins. The gross-out factor is high, as each of the rodents, insects, molds,, etc., do their respective jobs. For example, the fly states: “You're gonna love hearing how I eat. I vomit on the pumpkin flesh. My vomit dissolves pumpkin nutrients so I can lap them up.” Fifteen different organisms describe their role in the eventual demise of this jack-o'-lantern. The photography is sharp and clear, and effectively ramps up the “eww” element. A few concerns might be the occasional use of the vernacular, as in the aforementioned “gonna,” and some younger children could be upset about the fate of their carefully carved pumpkins. Jack's plaintive voice is heard now and then: “Where once I smiled and winked, now fungi ring my mouth and eyes. A cheerful jack I am no more.” Schwartz includes some suggestions for classroom investigations, and they would be a wonderful vehicle for scientific explorations. Those wishing for a gentler look at this process might go to Wendy Pfeffer's A Log's Life (S & S, 1997).–Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Sophie's Squash

Book List Review
*Starred Review* Who says children don't love vegetables? Sophie certainly does, as her best friend is a yellow squash she has named Bernice. Even though Bernice is supposed to be dinner, Sophie draws a smiling face on her and convinces two very tolerant parents to let her keep the gourd as a playmate. The two have tea parties, somersault down the hill, go to library storytime, and have sleepovers. As the summer wanes, Mom is always exploring new recipes for cooking Bernice before she rots away altogether. Don't listen, Bernice! Sophie cries in terror, shielding her friend. In the fall a blotchy Bernice seems softer and her somersaults lacked their usual style, so Sophie plants her in the garden. In a perfect blend of story and art, the humorous watercolor-and-ink illustrations are bursting with color and energy on every page, replete with patterns in swirls, stripes, florals, and polka dots appearing on clothing, curtains, and upholstery. Endpapers depict the pigtailed Sophie with her jaunty red bows in constant motion running, tossing, flipping, cuddling, and balancing the squash. This is a paean to love and friendship, which can come in all species, shapes, and sizes.--Gepson, Lolly Copyright 2010 Booklist

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Rufus Goes to School by Kim Griswell

From Booklist

Does Rufus Leroy Williams III ever want to go to school! Sure, he is a piglet, but he has got a beloved picture book, and he wants to be able to read it. After observing human students, he figures out what he needs to be admitted: a backpack! Suitably backpacked, Rufus is taken before the principal, who shuts him down. “Because pigs track mud in the halls,” he says. “They play leapfrog in class, and they start food fights in the cafeteria.” Next Rufus acquires a lunch box and then a nap-time blanket, but the principal maintains that pigs disrupt school in a dozen different ways. It is only when Rufus reveals that he wants to learn to read that the principal reconsiders. Griswell’s list of imagined pig offenses is hilariously random (apparently pigs like to knock over block towers, leave nose prints on the windows, etc.), and each trespass is painted by Gorbachev with a maximum of pink, potbellied cuteness. The final pages take an odd sidestep into the inspirational, but otherwise this is a pure porcine pleasure. Preschool-Grade 1. --Daniel Kraus
"A warm, gently humorous story for kids who are looking to school with anticipation, not trepidation." —Publishers Weekly