We were ready for a new author of the month, but who would it be? Hana suggested Lauren Child. She told us Lauren Child has a collection of stories about Charlie and Lola who are funny characters. Hana, Naoimh and Feng went off to the library to find Lauren Child books. We also have a collection in Kindergarten.
The children were instantly captivated by the illustrations, drawing comparisons with Ezra Jack Keats and Louis Ehlert. They commented on the marrying of drawing with photographs. Children wondered how the illustrator had created this effect. Several children thought the illustrations were collages and referred to their experiences in art class.
Lauren Child does lots of interesting things with text, I am wondering how long it is before the children start to comment ton this.
For all the designers in KP, Lauren Child was asked to take her ideas from book illustrations and turn them into fabric. I thought you would be interested in the design process. It reminded me of our unit of inquiry about communicating our ideas in many ways.
This month we have decided on a famous Canadian children’s author, Robert Munsch. He is a wonderful storyteller and I recommend you visiting his website, www.robertmunsch.com where you can hear him read his books.
I started off reading one of my favourite Robert Munsch books, “The paper bag princess”. Some children said they had heard it in ELC and Alex said he had seen a movie of the book.
I wonder which Robert Munsch book will be the children’s favourite at the end of the month?
Read aloud books are an integral part of our daily school life. We share the joy of beautifully crafted stories. Read aloud books allow us to, connect through language and images, share our responses to literature and help us link literature to our lives. Ms Yuri reads in Japanese, Ms Zoe reads in English and the parents have come in and read in many languages.
Today was International read a loud day. The kindergarten children went to the library and Ms Lang read the book “Caps for Sale”. Some children were excited to revisit a favorite book and other children found a new favorite today. Ms Lang engaged the children with her expressive voice and use of gestures. This wonderful reading was topped off with the gift of a book mark for each child.
As we approached the end of February the children began to ask for shared reading time; they wanted to revisit their favourite Mem Fox books. I reminded the children that we would need a new author of the month.
I wondered whether the children would enjoy the works of Nick Sharratt . His distinctive style of illustrations and his pop-up books would offer a new perspective on illustrating. Nick Sharratt has a series of books which are adaptations of fairy tales. I thought this would provide another provocation for our new writing unit on narrative fiction.
I gathered some of Nick Sharratt’s books to show the children. They were instantly captivated by the bold colours and interactive pop-up style of illustration. Before March started the children shared their thoughts about the books. The children readily agreed, Nick Sharrett should be our new author of the month.
Hana: When can we get the new books?
Sofie: Can we just look at them again?
Ray: I know these books they are so cool.
Jiwon: So funny this book.
Shoma: Wooo look!
Ruby: We know it.
Aiden: Yes we know it form ELC.
I liked Nick’s advice on becoming an illustrator and artist. I feel it captures the essence of discussions we have with the children.
Look at the work of other artists.
Try to draw from your own observations of the world, using your own imagination and ideas rather than copying someone else’s.
We have been reading high quality literature that contains rich vocabulary and detailed descriptions. We took a week to read “A chair for mother” By Vera B Williams. We poured over every description, stopping to marvel at her words, closing our eyes to see if the words created images in our minds.
Then our chance came… down came to snow, lots and lots of snow. The children went outside and came back to report on the snow. Other children opened the door to watch our world change around us. I asked the children to describe what they saw, marveled at their descriptions and invited them to turn their visual delight into images others could access.
Over the next two days the children wrote this piece as I scribed for them. They were delighted by how much they had written. They kept saying, “Read it again, start again… read the bit again about when the snow started.”
We would like to share the piece with you and hope our words create images in your mind.
There was a cold winter rain. The rain was freezing cold like ice. It felt icy in our hair. The rain seemed to turn off and there was a little hail.The hail was like ice falling form the sky. It started to snow. The snow flakes got smaller and smaller and smaller. They seemed to shut up and disappear.
The snow began to stay on the ground. It looked like a cloud. It felt like we were walking on clouds, crunch-crunch-crunch. Outside it became white and the snow got thicker. The world was like a marshmallow.
Whilst the children are enjoying the stories by authour of the month Ezra Jack Keat’s, they spend most of the story time scrutinizing the illustrations. We have taken a collection of photographs of their favourite illustrations.
In December the children were in a quandary. Would Louis Elhert or Ezra Jack Keats be our author of the month. Their interest in these two authors was stimulated by their style of illustration. The children noted the way Elhert and Keat’s used real materials in their work.
The children decided Ezra Jack Keats would be the authour of the month for January. They quickly picked up on the fact that Keat’s has reoccurring character in Peter and willy his dog. They noted that Keat’s often uses a picture from the book as his front cover. Most impressively, the children started to comment on his illustration style and the way he blends collage into his work.
We read Keat’s books at the beginning of our writer’s workshop session. We discuss the way authors can learn from each other. The children were delighted by Keat’s Caldecott winning book ‘A snowy day”, this proved a great stimulus for our collective descriptive piece about our own snowy day this week.
We were contacted by a school in Mumbai who wanted to share images and thoughts about the host country in which they were living (Mumbai and Yokohama). The children connected their own experiences as they commented on images from Mumbai. We were able to reciprocate by sharing images the children had taken during our field trip to the temple for our ShiChi-Go-San celebrations.
Voice Thread is a powerful tool for sharing ideas and building upon others ideas. It enhances communication and developing presentation skills. It allows children to practice their ideas and then re-record them if it does not meet their standards. I was very impressed by how quickly the children could deconstruct others recordings and emphasis what they needed to do.
What connections will young children choose to make virtually?
This is the question Ben (KinderPris’s teacher) and I are exploring over the course of the academic year 2012-13. We hope this voice-thread will help children explore common interests. We made mind maps as a tool for formulating ideas that could be shared with others. This is another way of making children’s thinking visible.
Thinking, sharing, connecting. on PhotoPeach Our Voice Thread.
Our author for December is Lois Elhert. Elhert’s books are remarkable for their wonderful illustrations. She often uses collage in her illustrations, gluing pieces of paper, fabrics or objects to create vivid and colorful pictures to accompany the text. Ehlert has won several awards including the Cauldecott honour for Color Zoo.
Many of Elhert’s books deal are about nature; planting, growing, seasons, weather. She has written two beautifully illustrated books about autumn leaves. The children and I felt she is the perfect author for this season. The children will be gathering natural materials during their art lessons and creating collage pieces. Yet another way to create and design.