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New Review Tuesday: All the Broken Pieces

33605067 All the Broken Pieces by Ann Burg is a powerful novel-in-verse about 12-year-old Matt, a Vietnamese boy adopted by an American family at the end of the Vietnam War. A natural athlete, Matt finds solace in baseball, but he's still haunted by what he's seen and the family he left behind.

The free verse format makes All the Broken Pieces a great pick for April's National Poetry Month for readers in middle school and up, and the baseball theme also coincides with springtime reading. But there's no doubt readers will remember Matt's story—and pass it along to their friends—all year long.

You might pair All the Broken Pieces with other baseball novels for older readers, such as Mike Lupica's Heat or with fiction about the Vietnam War—one of my favorites is Cynthia Kadohata's Cracker: The Best Dog in Vietnam.

Will you read other novels in verse for Poetry Month? If so, which ones?

Nonfiction Monday: World Health Day

Prepare for World Health Day on April 7 with this fiction/nonfiction book pair and activities for grades 3-5.

Nonfiction.monday Facts First

Cv_0822575558 Keep Your Cool! What You Should Know about Stress
by Sandy Donovan (Author)
and Jack Desrocher (Illustrator)

Reading level: Grades 3-5
Hardcover: 64 pages
Publisher: Lerner

In this new Health Zone book, students will learn what causes stress and how to reduce it.



Pair With

Londoneye2 The London Eye Mystery
by Siobhan Dowd (Author)

Reading level: Grades 3-5
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: David Fickling Books

Talk about stress...Ted and Kat watch their cousin Salim board the London Eye, but when the ride is over, Salim is no where to be found! 


Activities...

The theme of this year's World Health Day is "Save lives. Make hospitals safe in emergencies."

Use the CDC's Body and Mind classroom activities.

Have your students take the health quiz at the UN's CyberSchoolBus page.

If you're blogging about nonfiction books on this Nonfiction Monday, go to Tales from the Rushmore Kid and add your blog to this week's Round-up!

Friday Blog Round Up

RiverFlow 'Tis the season of book awards and prizes and I was interested to find that on American Indians in Children's Literature there is mention of the "First Nation Communities Read" program, complete with annual award. Previous winners include Ancient Thunder, As Long as the River Flows, and SkySisters.  






Snake
While I'm not a big snake fan, Sonja is a big Nic Bishop fan, so this link is for her. The Jean Little Library offers a review of The Snake Scientist and with lines like, "They portray the fascinating world of snakes without being too frightening or icky, if you're a non-snakes lover," I might be tempted to actually check out the book!




Last week I challenged you all to donate a book to your local library and it turns out that Support Our Shelves is a campaign to do just that. The Brooklyn Public Library is just one of the systems participating along with others in Arlington, Kensington, and Red Hook. What a super cause.

I thought I was doing well to plan ahead and have some new poetry books out to review for April, National Poetry Month. GottaBook's Gregory has gone above and beyond with a poet a day for the month of April. Jane Yolen, Nikki Giovanni, and Jack Prelutsky are just the tip of the iceberg.

Are you in the mood to create a character scrapbook? Well you will be after you check out the Character Scrapbook tool, complete with a pick-the-facial-features feature.  It reminds me of a high-tech and educational Mr. Potato Head.

All righty folks. My work here is done. Have a fantastic weekend and we'll see you back here on Monday.  

Picture Book Thursday: Frogs



Bigmouth The Frog with the Big Mouth
Written by Teresa Bateman
Illustrated by Will Terry
Ages 4-8

 
 
FooFrog Foo, the Flying Frog of Washtub Pond
Written & illustrated by Belle Yang
Ages 3-7

 
 
 
 
Quentin Blake's Ten Frogs/Dix Grenouilles:
A Book About Counting in English and French
Written & illustrated by Quentin Blake
Pavilion Children's Books
Ages 4-8

The Frog with the Big Mouth
Set in the rainforest "by Iguazu Falls, where Argentina meets Brazil," the Frog with the Big Mouth is on the hop, boasting about his fly eating capabilities to any animal that will listen. Illustrated with verdant greens and filled with interesting points of view, Will Terry does a nice job complementing Teresa Bateman's text. And with a funny, "I should have seen it coming" ending, readers are bound to enjoy the adventures of Frog.

Foo, the Flying Frog of Washtub Pond
I think frogs must just be boastful creatures because Foo is on a roll, bragging to his friends Mao-Mao and Sue-Lin. But he gets his comeuppance and lands on his feet both figuratively and literally. Described as having a "remarkable style influenced by childhood memories of Taiwan and Japan, her experience immigrating to the United States at age seven, and her studies in Scotland and China," Belle Yang has an interesting illustrating style that continues to grow on me. Nice work Belle!

Quentin Blake's Ten Frogs/Dix Grenouilles
I was already a Blake fan from his Roald Dahl illustrations and continue to be with this fun counting book. His quick and quirky make for a fun English/French counting book. I think his "5 Rats" page is my favorite.

Activity
Use Ten Frogs as the inspiration to create a class counting book. Have students illustrate their own number page to be bound into a class book. For a home/school connection, xerox the book and send copies home with students.

Video Wednesday: Mark Teague Interview

Get up close and personal with illustrator/author Mark Teague in this gem of a video. The creator of the LaRue series and illustrator behind How Do Dinosaurs... series shares his inspiration, his advice for budding artists, and, most amazingly, takes you into his studio to show how he creates his beautiful artwork.

He also shares a few stories about his reading life as a kid, which I can relate to. I remember coming home from the library with a big stack of picture books, as well!

For more Teague resources, find downloadable classroom activities on the SeeSaw Author of the Month page.

More about Mark Teague.

New Review Tuesday: Wintergirls

35621937 I confess, I had to read Laurie Halse Anderson's new novel Wintergirls in small doses. Her portrayal of her main character Lia's struggle with grief, eating disorders, and cutting was so spot-on and disturbing that I could only handle about ten pages at a time before needing a break to think about how we've created a culture with so many huge obstacles for teenage girls.

Lia is trying to deal with the death of her former best friend Cassie, her partner in a compulsive race to be as thin as possible. Lia keeps seeing Cassie everywhere she goes, and the sightings combined with Lia's guilt at not answering Cassie's calls the night of her death threaten to push Lia over the edge—into a fairy tale world that Lia and Cassie created in their minds, where they can never be thin enough.

Even though this is a difficult story to get through, it's absolutely worthwhile and my favorite young adult novel of the year so far. Anderson is at the top of her game—her prose is as lean, poetic, and tortured as her characters. I would recommend reading this before giving it to any students so you are prepared to talk about any themes or questions that come up. That said, this is one of those books that could be truly life-changing for the right reader.

Have you read Wintergirls? What did you think?

Nonfiction Monday: It's Almost Poetry Month!

Get ready for Poetry Month with this fiction/nonfiction book pair and activities for grades K-12!

Nonfiction.monday Facts First

9780689834097_lg You Have to Write
by Janet S. Wong (Author)
and Teresa Flavin (Illustrator)

Reading level: Grades 2-8
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry

This how-to book about writing at school is also persuasive (You can do it!) and poetic.

Pair With

MyHippoSmall My Hippo Has the Hiccups And Other Poems I Totally Made Up
by Kenn Nesbitt (Author)
and Ethan Long (Illustrator)

Reading level: Grades K-8
Hardcover: 176 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks

This new book and CD of poems performed by the poet (say that three times!) includes tongue twisters, word play and just plain silliness.

Activities...

Continue reading "Nonfiction Monday: It's Almost Poetry Month!" »

Friday Kid Lit Round Up

Wildthings

I am such a sucker for Where the Wild Things Are. I love the artwork and the layout of the book is super. I guess it's only natural that I would add to the hype of the forthcoming movie.




Pigeon, Elephant, Naked Mole-rat, need I say more?  Funny man and kid's book author extraordinaire Mo Willems was recently on NPR's "The Roundtable." It's worth a listen.

I'll give you three guesses as to which famous author/illustrator continues to receive over 10,000 fan letters a year. Need a hint? Gene Hackman is his neighbor. If you're still stuck, read Emma Brockes interview over on The Guardian.

I have to admit, I haven't tried this myself yet, but I'm so intrigued with the idea. At BookMooch you can: "Type in books you want to give away. Receive requests from others for your books. Mail your books and receive points. Ask for books from others with your points." Talk about win-win!

When I posted about Emily Gravett yesterday, I had yet to read the article about her on Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast. I was pretty taken with Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears  and now I can't wait to get my hands on some of these other titles.

And with that, my friends, another week draws to a close. Why not end it on a high note and put a smile on the face of your librarian? Go pick up a picture book and donate it to your local library. I'd love to hear about the reactions you get. Until then, we'll see you back here next week.

Picture Book Thursday: Don't Worry, Be Happy!


Littlemouse Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears
Written and illustrated by Emily Gravett
Ages 4-11







LittlerabbitLittle Rabbit and The Night Mare
Written by Kate Klise
Illustrated by M. Sarah Klise
Ages 3-7






Underbed What's Under the Bed?
Written and illustrated by Joe Fenton
Ages 3-7






Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears
I have to admit, I missed Gravett's book Wolves when it was first published. I'm happy to report, I did not miss Little Mouse. Ms. Gravett uses humor and a clever mix of trompe l'oeil effects to create a story within a story. There are so many different cuts, folds, and fold-outs, that my hands were constantly running over the pages to see what was three dimensional. Meanwhile, Little Mouse's neurotic scribblings kept me in stitches throughout. His "I get edgy near sharp knives," page was particularly amusing. What a treat!

Little Rabbit and The Night Mare
The Klise sisters offer a charming tale of a rabbit who becomes so anxious after being assigned his first report, he begins to suffer from nightmares. Well, a "night mare" to be exact. This horse-like boogie man causes Rabbit no end of anxiety until he faces it down and aces his report, you guessed it, on his nightmare. The animal infused illustrations are well done; I'd call them Garth Williams meets Margaret Wise Brown. This title is a great way to broach nightmares and worries with your students.

What's Under the Bed?
What do you get when you combine a peppy Seussical text with a carefully chosen color palette? Joe Fenton's first, hopefully of many, picture book. Children will find a kindred spirit in Fred and his monster-in-the-dark troubles. The surprise ending is sure to please and leave readers with a smile. FYI: I've found lining up stuffed animals around the perimeter of the bed to be a reliable monster deterrent.

On the Trail of 39 Clues

Peter Lerangis, the author of the third 39 Clues book is over on Ink Splot blogging about his crazy adventures promoting the new book (The 39 Clues #3: The Sword Thief) while following mysterious clues. It's very entertaining -- especially if you're a fan of the books. 

Watch the first of five videos he filmed "Blair witch" style in the New York City subway, here:

Everything you need to know about 39 Clues is here.

Are you reading the 39 Clues series? What do you think?

Nonfiction Monday: Women's History

Celebrate Women's History Month with this fiction/nonfiction book pair and activities for grades 6-8.

Nonfiction.monday Facts First

Jacket_med No Girls Allowed
by Susan Hughes (Author)
and Willow Dawson (Illustrator)

Reading level: Grades 6-8
Hardcover: 80 pages
Publisher: Kids Can Press

See the stories of seven women who dressed as men, including Hapshepsut and Mu Lan, in this history book written and illustrated as a comic.



Pair With

9780590226516_lg Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie
The Oregon Trail Diary of Hattie Campbell, 1847

by Kristiana Gregory

Reading level: Grades 6-8
Hardcover: 168 pages
Publisher: Scholastic

In this Dear America historical diary series thirteen-year-old Hattie travels with her family across the country on the Oregon Trail.

Activities...

Continue reading "Nonfiction Monday: Women's History" »

Friday Kid Lit Round-Up

While he didn't technically write any picture books, he sure did have an effect on our language: good, old William Shakespeare apparently had his portrait painted in the early 1600s and there's evidence that the painting is directly of him instead of a copy of another piece of art.  

I would have to say that I agree with the BookChook that Mem Fox is "The Queen of the Read-Aloud."  "Fall in love with the pause," is just one of her "14 Fantastic Hints on Reading Aloud."

I know you've heard the big debate, Harry Potter or Twilight? Well, the Seattle Public Library has decided to take it to the fans as an after-school fundraiser, with panels that will "debate the merits of each series." Nicely done Seattle Public Library!

RIF has done a nice job of creating a collection of read-along stories and songs, including The Eeensy Weensy Spider, The Frog Princess and my personal favorite, Mice-tro Mozart. Try sharing these with students with the help of a whiteboard or projector.

Flashlightreader_large_lg As usual I'm hooked on Flashlight Readers, in particular the Underland Chronicles. The site is loaded with features: a moderated message board, a meet-the-author section, and the Gnawers' Labyrinth to name a few. I can't stop playing with the Creature Creator!


Alrighty then folks. Send me a comment or two and tell me what featured sites or books you've enjoyed. I'm all ears. Until then, have a super weekend and we'll see you back here on Monday. 

Picture Book Thursday: And the Cow Jumped Over the Moon


Icarus Icarus at the Edge of Time
Written by Brian Greene
Art Direction & Design by Chip Kidd
Knopf
Ages 10-Adult





Moonpowder Moonpowder
Written and Illustrated by John Rocco
Hyperion
Ages 5-8






AlmostastronautsAlmost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream
Written and Illustrated by Tanya Lee Stone
Candlewick Press
Ages 10 and up






Based on this post's title you had a 50/50 shot at guessing this posting's theme. By now you've probably figured out I'm not focusing on our bovine friends but on the moon itself. So, without further ado...

Continue reading "Picture Book Thursday: And the Cow Jumped Over the Moon" »

Video Wednesday: New Video Booktalks

Here at Scholastic, we dig video booktalks.They're a fun, easy way to get kids interested in good books without having to read the jacket or skim through the first few chapters. I've been inspired to read books after watching a booktalk (including Chasing Vermeer). We just published 12 new booktalks, bringing our grand total to 75 videos. Whew!

My favorite of the bunch is for Carlos is Gonna Get It by Kevin Emerson. It's performed by Scholastic staffer Jonathan Valuckas, who is just as hilarious and gregarious in person as he is in his video clips.

Watch all of the video booktalks and find a new book to read or recommend.

New Review Tuesday: Duck! Rabbit!

35382437 I'm a big fan of Amy Krouse Rosenthal's — I loved the charming Little Pea and Little Hoot, as well as her memoir for grown-ups, Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life.

And so I was thrilled to get my hands on her newest picture book, Duck! Rabbit!, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld. Duck! Rabbit! is a fun look at visual illusion—specifically the duck-rabbit conundrum that psychologist Joseph Jastrow first observed over a hundred years ago. Is Lichtenfeld's funny, black-and-white rendering a duck or a rabbit? Readers will battle it out with the two competing narrators, one of whom sees a duck wading through a swamp, the other a bunny hiding in the grass, and so on. The speakers eventually come around to one another's perspective, only to be stumped again by an anteater/brachiosaurus.

There are so many possible curriculum connections in this simple story — use it to talk about perspective and point of view from kindergarten on up. Older kids will be inspired to research other famous illusions. Point them in the direction of Al Seckel's great non-fiction book, Optical Illusions: The Science of Visual Perception. And of course the bunny/bird protagonist makes Duck! Rabbit! a terrific springtime read aloud!

Nonfiction Monday: Bullies

Teach students how to deal with bullies with this fiction/nonfiction book pair and activities for grades 3-5.

Nonfiction.monday Facts First

GoodbyeBullyMachine_SC Good-Bye Bully Machine
by Debbie Fox and Allan L. Beane, Ph.D.

Reading level: Grades 3-5
Hardcover/Paperback: 48 pages
Publisher: Free Spirit Publishing

This new book about bullying in school comes out in April, and it's filled with practical advice and colorful collage art.

Pair With

9781434210487 BMX Bully
by Jake Maddox
and Betsy Lewin (Illustrator)

Reading level: Grades 3-5
Hardcover: 72 pages
Publisher: Stone Arch Books

Matt wants to make the Evergreen racing team, but his chances are seriously threatened when a new boy moves to town and resorts to cheating in order to win.

Activities...

Continue reading "Nonfiction Monday: Bullies" »

Friday Kid Lit Round-Up

9780399226908_lg

Hey folks. Glad you could pop in. I think the Batches of Butterflies project at the Eric Carle Museum is so cool! They're asking "friends, families, and schools throughout the country and abroad to create their own butterflies to flutter in the museum." Pop on over to see how to get your butterfly fluttering in the Great Hall. But hurry, they need to get there by the 15th!

All you Percy Jackson fans had better start buttering your popcorn because February 2010 is the release date for the new movie. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief will star Logan Lerman and Brandon T. Jackson in 20th Century Fox's cinematic delight.

Mir is back at the Kitchen Table with a book review about a serious subject. At one point her daughter asked her about the Holocaust. "That could never happen nowadays, right?" With all that's happening in the world today, it really makes you stop and think.

With all of the book awards flying about lately, my students have become adept at identifying the Caldecott sticker and have been asking me all sorts of questions about it. They got me thinking and Wizards Wireless has the answers. So...."How do Caldecott and Newbery-winning books get their shiny stickers?"

I ran across this title the other day and was positively salivating. Amazon Supplier Loses Warehouse Lease, Invites the Public to Loot Its Books. I know you feel my pain that I wasn't in the UK to participate in this event!

Alrighty folks. I want you all to have a super weekend. Try to take a little time out to hunker down with a good book. And remember to support your local independent book store. They really help to keep the choices rich and... I sound like a coffee commercial. Just go read!

Picture Book Thursday: Bend It Like Beckham

0763633909.med Big Kicks 

Written and illustrated by Bob Kolar
Candlewick Press
Ages 4-6







9780061227790 Pele, King of Soccer
Written by Monica Brown
Illustrated by Rudy Gutierrez
Harper Collins
Ages 8-12







Davy-soccer-star-small Davy, Soccer Star!
Illustrated by Eve Tharlet
NorthSouth
Ages 3-8



Hey folks. I thought with all of the drama surrounding Beckham and whether or not he'd stay with Galaxy, you could use some down time with some "good for the soccer soul" picture books.

Big Kicks
The bright and colorful end papers features characters in a postage stamp design and become even more fun and relevant as the book unfolds. With illustrations reminiscent of Henry Hikes to Fitchburg, this story follows the Mighty Giants quest to find a player to help them win the big game. With quirky characters like Chicken Rabbit, Twirly Squirrel, and Fluff the Duck, adults and children will enjoy the story. And while it's not quite a back story, I thoroughly enjoyed the antics of Fluff the Duck as they played out in the background.

Pele, King of Soccer
This bilingual picture book traces soccer king Pele's rise to become one of history's greatest players.  Children will easily relate to the text and stories with quotes like, "Pele loved to play soccer with his friends. They didn't have enough money for a ball, so they used a grapefruit instead. If they couldn't find a grapefruit, they would stuff an old sock with newspapers!"

The colorful pictures impart a sense of energy that lends itself nicely to the subject. There's almost an electric buzz to them, that will keep the attention of students.

Davy, Soccer Star!
Oh that Davy, he's one resourceful rabbit. When his homemade soccer ball is ruined beyond repair, he decides to compete against the Big Bad Badgers to win a new ball. With some practice and training his ragtag team of wild rabbits pulls off a big win and brings home the bacon. (Well, ball actually, but you know what I mean.)

As always, Eve Tharlet provides a series of beyond cute creatures in her super illustrations.  Davy fans will not be disappointed.

Activity
Get some warm soapy water and white and black wool. Have students roll the white wool into small soccer balls. When the balls are nearly done, use spots of black to mimic the pattern on a soccer ball. 

For full instructions on felting wool, check out the Crunchy Parent Making a Felted Wool Ball video on YouTube.

Video Wednesday: Diary of a Wimpy Kid Booktalk

The adorable and lovable Sammi Hanratty, a Hollywood actress whose credits include "Pushing Daisies," "The Suite Life of Zack and Cody" and the new American Girl movie, stopped by the Scholastic offices a few weeks ago. While here, we asked her to talk about her favorite books. She couldn't wait to tell us all about Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney -- which she had recently finished and had recommended to all her friends ... even her Dad!

Here's her booktalk:


Watch the Diary of a Wimpy Kid video book trailer and check out more video booktalks here!

Live in the Tri-State Area? Free Tickets to Meg Cabot Event March 12!

Scholastic is hosting an Allie Finkle Super Sleepover with author Meg Cabot and celebrity host Caroline Rhea. If you live in the tri-state area, you and your child can sign up for tickets to this live event.

What: Allie Finkle’s Super Sleepover LIVE Event

When: March 12, 2009 at 7:30 p.m. EST

Where: Scholastic Auditorium: 557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012

Why: We’re celebrating the release of Best Friends and Drama Queens, the newest book in Meg Cabot’s best-selling Allie Finkle’s Rules for Girls series

Who: You and your parent or guardian

How: RSVP here (bottom of the page) -- then print out and bring your ticket with to the event.

Dress: Pajamas (optional)

You can also submit questions in advance on the RSVP page.

New Review Tuesday: Tell Me Who

32589679 If you've ever been a 12-year-old girl, it's hard not to be drawn to the premise of Tell Me Who, by Jessica Wollman. Sixth-grader Molly and her best friend Tanna discover a machine that accurately predicts who you're going to marry when you're older. Squee!

As you can imagine, hilarity ensues, especially when Molly finds out she's destined to marry...a fifth grader. Uh oh! I loved the funny moments in this book, which brought me right back to playing MASH with my own sixth-grade buddies. But I also appreciated the more serious plot line, in which Molly struggles to talk to her dad about his upcoming wedding to the dreaded "Claw." Ultimately, Tell Me Who asks readers to think about whether or not we can change our destinies, a message that goes way beyond lunchroom antics.

This book would also be a fantastic accompaniment to a unit on inventions. Why not challenge readers to come up with their own machines designed to solve a question or problem? Best for grades 4–6.

Nonfiction Monday: Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

Celebrate Read Across America today on Dr Seuss' birthday with this fiction/nonfiction book pair and activities.

Nonfiction.monday Facts First

9780375922985_lg The Boy on Fairfield Street
by Kathleen Krull (Author)
and Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher (Illustrators)

Reading level: Grades 3-5
Hardcover: 48 pages
Publisher: Random House

Ted Geisel grew up to be the famous Dr. Seuss, but this biography shows him taunted as a child and told he could never make it as an artist.

Pair With

9780394944944_lg And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street
by Dr. Seuss

Reading level: Grades K-2
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Random House

This easy reader was the first book Ted Geisel both wrote and illustrated...and it was rejected 27 times!

Activities...

Continue reading "Nonfiction Monday: Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!" »

CBC Book Awards Finalists 2009

The 2009 CBC Children's Choice Book Award finalists have been announced. Nearly 15,000 children and teens cast votes to determine the list -- and thousands more will weigh in on who should win.

Kid Lit Kit applauds all the fantastic nominated books, authors, and illustrators. The Scholastic finalists are:

Fifth Grade to Sixth Grade Book of the Year
100 Most Dangerous Things On the Planet by Anna Claybourne 
Amulet, Book One: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi (watch an interview with Kibuishi and the Amulet book trailer)

Teen Choice Book Award
Airhead by Meg Cabot (see the Airhead video booktalk)
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
(read Hunger Games chapter one (PDF), watch an interview with Collins, find The Hunger Games discussion guide)

9780439634250_lg Illustrator of the Year
Jon J Muth, Zen Ties








Encourage your students to vote at www.BookWeekOnline.com from March 16 through May 3. 

Friday's Missing Kid Lit Round-Up

(Note from Amy: Ah technology, you wonderful, wild beast. Jeremy's Friday post resurfaced inexplicably in our What's New blog (a very good blog in its own right. I recommend you check it out if you haven't already). So, here it is, back where it belongs. We're getting piles of snow today. If you are too, hope you're enjoying it curled up with a good book. What's your favorite book for a snowy day?)

Neddiad_interview Hi folks. You can imagine my surprise as I was listening to Car Talk this weekend when who should I hear but that king of NPR kid lit himself, Daniel Pinkwater (read an interview with Pinkwater).  It was a blast to listen to him talk about his search for the perfect car -- see what the winning car was.

Attention all you Grace Lin fans: If you're in the Cambridge area this summer, you're invited to the book launch of Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. A virtual party is in the works as well "with the grand prize being your name or your likeness (or your child's, whatever you prefer) in an upcoming book of mine!," announced Grace Lin.

I'm guessing you haven't had a chance to put much thought into quality manga for kids, but now there's  no need to!  The folks at School Library Journal have done it for you. So go ahead and check out Zelda, Clover, and Kaya  (you know you want to.)

The Red House Children's Book Award nominations have been announced in the UK. Lo and behold, Allan Ahlberg's The Pencil made the cut. Savvy readers will remember that title from my very first post here on the Kid Lit Kit.

And lastly, if you're in the mood for a three-day, two-night trip to New York City then do I have a contest for you. Enter the Share Your Love for Scholastic.com Contest and you might win a trip to visit with the fine folks at Scholastic.

Well, it's that time folks. I need to head off to ready the classroom for another day of kindergarten and field test some new titles for you. Have a super weekend, and we'll see you back here on Monday. 

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in Kid Lit Kit are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.