Thursday, May 19, 2016

20th - 30th May International Pickle Week

Apparently Pickle Week is celebrated for ten days, not seven during May and it has been since 1948. In Australia children look at you strangely when you talk about 'pickles'. We have gherkins, cucumbers, mustard pickles and dill pickles, but the actual act of 'pickling' is not something many children would have thought about, even though it has been around since the 1300s. I asked a class what it meant to be 'in a pickle' though and surprisingly a couple knew that if you were in a pickle you were in difficulty. They will be ready when they finally read Shakespeare's The Tempest and see this reference!

There are books to read now though...some which actually have the edible 'pickles' as a subject, some where it is used as a character's name and others where someone finds themselves 'in a pickle'. Have fun reading, pickling vegetables and eating pickles for these ten days.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

18th May International Museum Day

Today at school we put together a wonderful display for International Museum Day. We have celebrated this before in a much smaller way, but when we started looking we could not believe just how many books we had on the topic. See list of books on Pinterest here.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

13th May Frog Jumping Day

Frog Jumping Day is a good day to celebrate frogs and their amazing ability.

'Frogs have great jumping capabilities and are the best jumpers among all vertebrates given their size.'

Collect all the frog books you can find, both stories and expository texts and set aside time to read and learn, read and laugh and read and share. The most borrowed frog book in the library is Juliette MacIver's The Frog Who Lost His UnderwearThere are so many favourite 'frog' series in my library.

* Frog by Max Velthuijs. There is a dozen or so books in this series and they have recently been reissued in a larger format with covers that no longer have a bordered illustration.

* A Boy, a Dog and a Frog by Mercer Mayer. These little books are textless and small hands love them and tell the stories to each other without any trouble. There are six of them.

* Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel. This series has been around for a long time, but so many generations of children have learned to read using these beginning chapter books. They are always in print.

* Lester and Clyde by James Reese. These three books are very old now, out of print and hard to find, but I know teachers who share these stories with their class and then the children are keen to borrow them.

While these aren't a series, there are several versions of the dreamtime story of Tiddalick , a frog who caused a flood in my library, complete with puppets so that the children can make a play. It would be good also to introduce the fairytale  The Frog Prince  because it is one of the Grimm stories that not as many children know. Read a traditional version with fairytale language, not a 'reader' and then compare it with a spoof like Jackie Urbanovic's Prince of a Frog. Have fun revisiting lots of old favourites and jumping around like a frog. Below is a collection of stories about frogs. There are a large number of nonfiction books too listed here.