Oh Brother! Picture Book Review

First of all I just had to share this picture. Now this is my idea of PARADISE!! Covered in books. πŸ™‚

I was able to read this ADORABLE little picture book in exchange for a review. This happened as a result of being part of the wonderful community of GOODREADS! These opinions are my own however! πŸ™‚ I wasn’t paid for the review. Although now that I think about it….that sounds like an AWESOME job to have. Read books for a living.

Oh Brother!: A Nico and Tugger Tale.Oh Brother! by Kimberly Sentek

Goodreads Summary:

Two stories in one – double the reading fun! Meet Nico and Tugger, two dogs that became brothers. Their story is an endearing and fun look at sibling rivalry. – from two points of view.

My Thoughts:

A wonderfully sweet tale of two tails. πŸ™‚

Told from two different points of view-Nico and Tugger is an endearing story of puppy feelings. And I think dogs DO have feelings like this!!

They have to come to terms with each other-one is the “only” dog until the other one becomes part of the family.

A cute children’s book written in rhyme.

I absolutely ADORE the front cover. How cute are their tails forming a heart?? Be still my own heart. πŸ™‚

Thanks to Kimberly Sentek for giving me this opportunity to read and review this awesome book!!

5 of 5 stars


Five for Friday


I’m linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for the 1st time ever for her Five for Friday linky party.

1. Learning computer technical thingies. Alas, I bought some graphics from teachers pay teachers and was going to put these cute little sticky notes with numbers in this post but……. it’s late, I’m tired, and I can’t figure out how to make the number BIG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So now you know what part of my “to do” list includes for this summer! πŸ™‚

Sticky Notes Bright Green

2. I am taking part of the Runner’s World Running Streak that goes from Memorial Day to the 4th of July. Hopefully this will get me back in the swing run of things! I’ve logged 5 miles so far since Monday! You can follow me on twitter-@shannonclark7. #RWRunStreak


3. I raked hay this morning for my husband and have to say that I did a pretty darn good job of it!! πŸ™‚ Note to self: take headache medicine before taking this one because your neck becomes that of an owl swiveling and swiveling and swiveling and…..


4. I have been reading up a storm as I’m doing the #bookaday challenge that Donalyn hosts each summer. The plan is really just to read as much as you can and tweet your reading/books using the #bookaday challenge. I.LOVE.TO.READ. πŸ™‚ I just finished Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen today, a middle grade novel that was superb!!


I keep up with my books on GoodreadsΒ so check out what I’ve read lately-maybe you’ll find a good book or two!

5. For those of you who teach and like to read about teaching and talk about teaching (that would be ME!), a fellow tweep and I are hosting a book chat on the book Notice and Note-Close Reading by Kylene Beers and Bob Probst. The twitter chat will be June 6, 13, and 20 at 8pm CST. Hashtag is #NNNchat. Join in for the fun! We have also created a facebook group so that we can continue the discussion and for those who can’t be part of the twitter party. πŸ™‚ Here’s the link to it:

Notice and Note-Close Reading Facebook Group

So there you have it-my 1st Five for Friday post. That was fun. πŸ™‚



What I’m Going to Do Differently Next Year

Yes, go ahead and call the bloggy police. I’m posting twice in one day. πŸ™‚

I’m linking up with the fantastic Kim at Finding Joy in 6th Grade for her 1st linky party-What I’m Going to Do Differently Next Year.

And since supper is on the stove, this is going to be FAST! πŸ™‚

1. Well, for starters I will be teaching 6th grade ALL SUBJECTS next year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YIKES!!! So lots of new stuff for me, and I couldn’t be more excited. Earth Science will be new, Math will be new, AND I am going to TRY the reading workshop model AND the Reading Olympians Word Study in place of Spelling AND Jeff Anderson’s Invitation to Notice for Grammar.

Whew! Maybe I should have put all that under different numbers!!!

2. I “hope” to be more organized with my planning-in other words get a lot of the rough sketching done this summer!!

3. I want to REALLY focus on writing. I start the National Writing Project on Monday, June 3rd and hope to learn A LOT!!

So-what are you going to do next year????????????

It’s Monday-What Are You Reading? 5/20/13

Here we are with another chance to share wonderful books with each other thanks to Jen and Kellee over atΒ Teach Mentor TextsΒ and Sheila over atΒ Book JourneyΒ who both sponsor this great meme each week for young adult/children and adult respectively!

This is what I read this past week:

Architects of the HolocaustDrama

3rd Generation and BeyondWake (Dream Catcher, #1)

The Fault in Our StarsSixth-Grade Glommers, Norks, and Me

The Holocaust/Hitler book was a GREAT informational book with pictures. Very kid friendly in my opinion. One of my 5th graders had gotten it from a public library in a nearby town when he had an eye appointment and GRACIOUSLY let me borrow it. πŸ™‚

I FINALLY read John Green’s The Fault in our Stars. Needed tissues. I loved this book but definitely YA/NA with some language and mature content.

Wake was DIFFERENT. Easy to read YA that LOTS of teens would probably love. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

3rd Generation and Beyond was a book of virtues based on the author’s relationship with her family that survived the holocaust. I was involved in my 1st blog tour with this book!!!! It had lots of fantastic quotes!

DRAMA was a cute graphic novel. I had already read SMILE by Raina last year. I liked Smile better. NOT that I didn’t like DRAMA. Just. πŸ™‚

Sixth Grade Glommers, Norks, and Me was ADORABLY FUNNY AND CUTE. Middle school girls would LOVE this one.

I am about to start What a Girl Wants by Kristin Billerbeck. At some point this week. πŸ™‚

Have you read any of these?

What great book did you read this past week?


Conferring With a Writer Video Clip

This is what I’m hoping to do next year. Confer with my students about their writing (and reading). Here’s a short video clip:

Stenhouse Writing Conference Video Clip

What great things did you see?

I saw:

1. Conferring (which is the ultimate GREAT thing!)

2. Pointing out the good things in the writing

3. Teaching only 1 thing-not a multitude of things that cannot be remembered

4. Showing how to revise-without erasing the good writing that is already there

I REALLY think that kids will remember this kind of teaching over whole class teaching. πŸ™‚

Can’t wait to learn more about writing at the National Writing Project summer institute!!! My orientation is this Monday afternoon. Of course, we are supposed to have a meeting after school to figure out what we will be teaching next year, but my friend is going to text me the updates for that. πŸ™‚ Right now it’s looking like 6th, 5th, or 1st. YIKES!

I’m really hoping for 6th. Praying actually. Bribery is possible. Begging. Pleading. Threatening. No-just joking! πŸ™‚

3rd Generation and Beyond by Danna Pycher Book Review

3rd Generation and Beyond3rd Generation and Beyond by Danna Pycher

Goodreads Summary:

“Yesterday’s lessons, for tomorrow’s future…” 3rd Generation and Beyond is a book of powerful life philosophies according to a Third Generation Holocaust descendant. Each chapter gives a little more insight into how we, as individuals, can empower ourselves and the world around us. Back of book: By this time, you would think we would have learned our lesson. By now, you would think humankind would have found a way to live together peacefully. For some reason that is not the case. 3rd Generation takes us on a journey through the perspective of a young woman who wants to know why we can’t seem to find common ground. Her insightful life philosophies are all inspired by her view of the world as a Third Generation descendant of the Holocaust. Her grandparents experienced the worst of times, yet still held onto the belief that life can and should be beautiful. Their life lessons will help you discover how we can all create a better world. … a treasure of inspiring, thoughtful life lessons interwoven with what Danna learned from her grandparents who were Holocaust survivors.

My Thoughts:

This one was a different take on the holocaust. Written by a young woman whose grandfather survived the holocaust she sends words of wisdom out in each chapter. Her goal is for people to be kind and to spread their kindness around. I enjoyed the different perspective that this book took concerning the holocaust. I do wish there would have been more stories from her grandparents concerning what they had been through in the book. However, I know that her intent in writing this book was not to “teach” the holocaust, but to encourage people to live in kindness. It was more of a motivational book, and it served its purpose well.

5 of 5 stars

There are many wonderful quotes in this book, both by famous people (quotes you might be familiar with already) and quotes by the author herself. Here are some by Danny, the author that spoke to me:

“Kindness is infectious. Spread the disease.”

“Appreciate the sweet and sour flavors of your life.”

“Create your opportunities. Create your reality.”

“We are given the opportunity to paint a canvas of our lives with an endless palette of choices.”

Quotes in the book by famous people:

“It is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority.” -Ben Franklin

(Did the people of Germany question Hitler or his ideas enough?)

“I agree with Dante, that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in a period of moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.”-Martin Luther King Jr.

The very last statement of this book was comprised of 5 small words that hold a lot of power.

“You must not be silent.”

This statement by the author is directly linked to the atrocities of the Holocaust AND to the atrocities that are still being committed today. It is up to US to NOT remain silent, but to resist and stand up for what we believe in. To help other people. To light the world with our kindness. These are the wishes of Danna, the author.

What is your wish?


National Writing Project Here I Come!!!!

Happy Monday! I finally got the email I had been waiting on. My application was accepted for the National Writing Project this summer!!!! YIPPEE!!

I will be traveling to Jacksonville State University the entire month of June, Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm to read and Β research about writing and to write!

It’s a summer institute-I think in every state-where teachers from all grade levels and content areas gather together to receive training on learning how to better teach writing.

I had been hesitant about applying in the beginning because of the following reasons:

1. What if I learn all these great things but I’m not good enough to implement them in my own classroom?

2. What if WHAT I learn doesn’t apply to my students?

3. What if I fail miserably?

4. What if I give up a whole month of my summer, and it’s not worth it?

5. What if

6. What if

But I took the plunge and sent my application in. And let me tell you-after I sent that baby off I couldn’t think of anything else!!! πŸ™‚ I became almost obsessed with it. I WANTED it so badly.

The email came today. My life has begun. πŸ™‚

I can’t wait to learn some great strategies for teaching, assessing, and grading writing. I will be posting what I learn so tune in during June to learn more about W.R.I.T.I.N.G.

You can follow the National Writing Project on twitter at @writingproject or hashtag #NWP.

Visit their website at National Writing ProjectΒ or their facebook page at National Writing Project.

I leave you with this.


Finishing With Faith 5k

Kara and I ran the Finishing With Faith 5k this morning. A slow 37:45, but a great run!

Karen (in the middle) holds this race each year in memory of her sweet daughter, Kara Hay, who lost her fight with cystic fibrosis at the age of 21. So it’s an emotionally charged race. Karen is such an upbeat person who even through her tears still manages to see the positive side of things. This race is a celebration of her daughter’s life. πŸ™‚

This is the 2nd time I have run it and hope to run it many more times! It’s held at a city park with a pond. It’s beautiful and serene. About as close to God as you can get.




A great way to jump start my weekend after a VERY VERY hectic week. Well, let me take the words “jump start” back because the only jumping I have done since the race was to jump on the couch!! πŸ™‚

I AM DETERMINED to run tomorrow, and the day after, and the day after, and the day…..

This lack of running is for the birds. HA! Literally! πŸ™‚

Have a great weekend!

Twitter Universe

I need to catch up on my blogging!! Posting and reading other blogs. It seems I have gotten lost in space. That is twitter space!! So much professional development to be had. Instantly.

I’ve made great connections and gotten wonderful suggestions!!

You can follow me at @shannonclark7 . πŸ™‚