Friday, August 10, 2012

10 for 10...just my favorites

This is my first year participating in the picture book event: August 10 for 10 hosted by Cathy Mere and Mandy Robek.  As I was getting my room ready yesterday, I spent the day reorganizing all of the books that I have bought over 16 years of teaching.  I was remembering so many wonderful moments from teaching in first grade, second grade, fourth grade, and fifth grade classrooms.  Here are my Top 10 Picture Books today.  Disclaimer:  It could change by tomorrow :) and they appear in no specific order!

1.  Chicken Cheeks:  This book has come up with more synonyms for a "behind" then I could ever think of!  Students love the fact that they have learned so many new words for a body part that they are often you mean "but" with one "t" or the not-appropriate word with two "t"'s.  I love the fact that the students always remember what a synonym is and the mood that is appropriate with each one.  You will love "the end" :)

2. Duck! Rabbit!:  This is my go-to book at the beginning of the year!  I show just the illustration below the title and ask the class what they see.  Great conversation about listening to each other's point of view and using evidence "from the pictures" to convince us.

3.  Queen of the Falls:  This historical fiction account of the first lady to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel has students on the edge of their seats.  Perfect for understanding a character's motivation and struggles to achieve a dream.

4.  Pulling the Lion's Tail:  Patience and time are the clear message while a child learns to use her grandfather's advice with adjusting to her new stepmother in an Ethiopia community.

5.  Questions, Questions:  Of course my list would include a book that inspires wonders around us to promote inquiry.

6.  Read Anything Good Lately?:  This is an ABC book that lists all of the ways we read around us... both with genres and our world.  Great mini-lesson at the beginning of the year to try to create an ABC list of what we read...M for menus, B for blogs, etc...This book does not contain any digital reading...that would be fun to add in!

 7.  Little Dog Poems:  These simple poems about a dog make the best mentor text for writing poetry!

8.  The Empty Pot:  Honesty is the lesson while trying to succeed in the emperor's contest.

9.  Courage:  This book shows us that we can find courage in what seem to be simple tasks around us.

10.  Pete the Cat:  This book puts anyone in a good mood...especially if you play the song with it! If you have read it, you know that it is "all good"!!!


  1. Tracy,
    I'm so glad you were able to join the event. My students always are crazy over "Pete the Cat" and "Duck! Rabbit!". You have several titles here that I haven't seen. I can't wait to check them out.


  2. Love you list Tracy and I have 5 out of 10 books so once again we're on the same page. However you gave me some new ideas on how to use those books. Thanks again for sharing your list!

  3. Thanks for sharing your list! The synonym book sounds like a fun one and you gave me some new ideas.

  4. Tracy,
    I am going to snag Questions, Questions for sure. We are working towards having the inquiry process as the main framework for learning, and questions are the lynch pin. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Another great one is...Step Gently Out by Helen Frost...encourages to observe deeply and not just at the surface. Let me know how it goes :)

  5. I, too, am new to Questions Questions and will look it up. Thanks for all your recommendations.
    Apples with Many Seeds