Fall Book Fair Preview

We went to the library again today, so that Mrs. Meihaus could give us a preview of the Scholastic Book Fair that’s coming in a couple of weeks.  We watched a video, and talked a a little about what we saw, and then checked out the library commons again in order to check out some new books.

It can sometimes really be annoying  entertaining to watch movies with small children, as they usually say everything that is in their head out loud in the room (this happens in many part of our days right now…).  Well, since the movie they were watching was about books, I listened even closer to what they were saying.

Screenshot 2016-08-26 19.39.21About Dog Man by Dav Pilkey of Captain Underpants fame: “I’m gonna look for that!”

Screenshot 2016-08-26 19.40.28About Magic Puppy: “Aww, that’s so cute!  I’m gonna get that!”

Screenshot 2016-08-26 19.41.21Screenshot 2016-08-26 19.42.01About Lego Dino Safari and Lego Knights and Castles: “YEAH!!!!!!!!!” (yes, they were that excited. 🙂  (On a side note, so was I.  These were kind of a cross between Lego, non-fiction, humor and graphic novel.  I want to read one!)

So no one really said anything about these last few, but I was interested in them for our classroom!


After we finished up with our lesson, and had a reminder about how to use the library respectfully, we were off!  And YES, I got pictures this time.  Please check out Rm. 202 kids at work as well as the new Library Commons layout.  It’s a GREAT place to be. 🙂

I saved these last two pictures because they are definitely where the energy is with reading in our room right now:


I LOVE that Callahan chose this new classroom favorite as his check out today.  I shared it on one of our very first days, and he thought his brother would like it, too!  Great idea, Cal!


I read My New Friend is So Fun! the other day and WE LOVED IT and since there we’ve ready at least 3 or 4 more, and have now made the goal of READING THEM ALL!!  Um, yeah, we’re kind of Elephant and Piggie fans in Rm. 202–but it’s kind of hard not to be, I guess. 🙂

Ok, one more…well, two more.  See what I mean…

I took this picture of our friend Josh today in the library:


Ok, and check this one out from August 26, 2015.  Yep, same day last year:

Screenshot 2016-08-26 20.25.35

WHAT???  It was cute enough that the brothers took the same picture on the same big ‘ole bear, but on the same date???  That’s even better!  Well at least to me.  And to their mom. LOL 🙂

Thanks for reading!  Leave us a note about your thoughts, will ya?  Kids LOVE to know you are reading their stories. 🙂

#FDOFG–Library Learning Commons

Ok, so this post feels a little like a tease, but I wanted to at least share the story (so I don’t forget and therefore never post it because I don’t have the right pictures.  I’ve made that mistake before. 🙂 ).

This year, our librarian, Mrs. Meihaus, made the jump to turn our library in a learning commons, taking time and care to recreate the space by moving furniture, adding “soft things” like more stuffed animals, bean bags and pillows, and rethinking how we’ll use the communal space for learning.  Kiddos were SO excited when we finally got a chance to visit and see the new space for ourselves last week.

First graders got to spend the first few minutes exploring the new space on their own, and then we met Mrs. Meihaus in the storytelling area for some fun, a story (of course!) and conversation.

Mrs. Meihaus shared Kate Messner’s How to Read a Story, which is a great tool for any aged reader on what readers really do with a book.  I love that Mrs. Meihaus even said it should be a manual that all teachers should read for how to do ELA (she probably said it way more eloquently than that, but I concur. It was pretty great!).

After we read, we played a game to help remind us of “thumbs up” and “thumbs down” things to do in the library or with books…

…and then we had time to check out….the rest of the library AND new books!!  BUT…that’s the part I don’t have pictures of.  As you can imagine, first graders need lots of support as they navigate a giant library and figure out what to read.  I don’t have pictures of the great new layout, or the cozy soft stuff where kiddos snuggled in to read, or the ZERO ZONE, a new space where kids can go if they need absolute silence to work/read, but believe me: it’s awesome!  We’re going back again to visit on Friday, so maybe I’ll have time to snap some then.

I do actually have some pictures of us reading our new books, though….just not in what would be considered a typical place.  We took a bathroom break after our library visit and took full advantage of the time to sit and enjoy our new gems!  It was such a great sight–had to share!  It was so great to watch them dig in and get busy with a book!

Students: What was your favorite part of our new Learning Commons?  What was different from last year?  What was still the same?  What books did you check out?

Parents:  What did your kiddos tell you about their visit?  What do you know about a Learning Commons v. a “regular” library?  What questions do you have?

Teachers:  What does the Library Learning Commons look like in your school?  How is it utilized by students? by teachers? by administration? by families?  What advice do you have as we transition to a new learning space?