We closed out Read Across America and World Read Aloud week with even more connections.
Our day began with a Georgia connection with Misti Sikes. We shared Beekle together. I loved when her students said that Beekle reminded them of Baymax from Big Hero 6.
Next, Ms. Choate’s Kindergarten class connected with Donna MacDonald and her 5th grade students in Vermont. Donna’s students passed the book around the group and took a turn read Piggie’s part in Waiting is Not Easy and Elephant’s part in I’m a Frog.
Ms. Seeling’s 1st grade class got to connect with author Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen. She is the author of many books including Duck, Duck Moose. Her son joined us in the Skype and we learned that he was the inspiration for Moose. We learned a lot about her writing process and how it takes many people to create a book that we see on our shelves.
Ms. Stuckey’s 1st grade class connected with Jeanne Cook’s students in Missouri to read Beekle. We had a lot of fun sharing some of our favorite books with one another and seeing what connections we had to favorite books even though we were in different grades.
I can’t think of a more perfect way to close out our World Read Aloud week than Skyping with the amazing Jenny Sue Kostecki Shaw. We have enjoyed reading Same, Same but Different in so many Skype connections with other schools. Jenny Sue has a new book coming out in May called Luna and Me. It is the story about a woman who lived in a tree called Luna in order to save the tree and the surrounding forest. I’ve watched this book coming together through the posts that Jenny Sue has shared over the past couple of years, and I’ve been eager to hear it. Our students were fortunate enough to be the very first students to hear a book read out loud. This is the 2nd time this week that our students have heard words from a book read by the author for the very first time. It is magical! The students were hanging on every word, and you could tell that this is a book that is going to speak to students. It is a fascinating and engaging topic, and it shows the power of how one person can truly make a difference. I can tell that this is a book that will lead to some inspiring conversations and postive action in our world.
When Jenny Sue finished reading the book, our students gave her a huge round of applause.
Then, they had a chance to ask her several questions about writing. We saw the very first versions of the book and learned that there were over 40 drafts of the book. We learned about the salt technique that Jenny Sue used throughout the paintings in the book. We also had lots of side notes from Jenny Sue’s daughter, Tulsi, which made the Skype even more special.
Thank you to each and ever school and author who connected with us this week. Your reading, conversation, time, and inspiring thoughts have connected us to so many new and old stories. I’ve seen library books flying off the shelves this week into the hands of readers, and it’s all because of the connections we have made this week.
I hope you will all take a moment to look at our map of connections and walk back through our week through our Google Tour. If you haven’t ever tried connecting for World Read Aloud, you can really do it at any time. You can be sure that our school will be connecting next year during the 1st week of March.
Read about our other World Read Aloud connections, too.