Luna & Me

Luna & meLuna & Me: the true story of a girl who lived in a tree to save a forest
by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw
40 pages; ages 5-9
Henry Holt & Co, 2015

Have you ever climbed a tree?
And stayed there ALL night?

This is the story of a girl who climbed a tree and lived high in its branches for two years. It is the story of a tree born nearly a thousand years ago, and a girl born thirteen thousand full moons later.

The tree’s name is Luna. The girl’s name is Julie, but everyone called her Butterfly.

One day Butterfly wandered into an ancient grove of redwoods. She noticed a tree with broken branches and a large blue X painted on its side. That blue X meant that Luna was slated to be harvested and turned into lumber. Butterfly knew that people needed lumber to build their homes. But trees are important, too. They make oxygen (important for breathing) and provide homes for animals. And their roots hold the soil and keep it from washing away.

So she decides that if she is in the tree, no one will cut it down. Thus begins her lengthy camp-out in the arms of her tree. Many friends supported her, sending food and other supplies up by rope. Butterfly began exploring the tree, discovering a magical cave and secrets of canopy animals. She documented what she learned and shared it with the world.

Finally, after nearly two years, the lumber company agreed to protect Luna and the surrounding grove. You can visit Sanctuary Forest near the town of Whitethorn, CA.

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2015 Sue Heavenrich All Rights Reserved. Site Meter

Teaching with Story: Classroom Connections to Storytelling

Teaching with Story: Classroom Connections to Storytelling
by Margaret Read MacDonald (Author), Jennifer MacDonald Whitman (Author), and Nathaniel Forrest Whitman (Author)

Booktalk: An invaluable resource book for using storytelling in the classroom, this book correlates with the Common Core Standards and covers “The Seven C’s” of Storytelling: Community, Character, Communication, Curriculum, Cultural Connections, Creativity, and Confidence.

Snippet: We will use the Common Core Standards as our guide and we will highlight the direct links that storytelling has with many of the standards we are already trying to teach. If someone ever questions the fact that you are spending time telling tales, you can explain how many different standards you are addressing every time you tell a story.

See more booktalks at the Booktalking #kidlit blog.

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Literary Link: A new first for the Carnival of Children’s Literature–our May 2015 Carnival of Children’s Literature Roundup links to 2 #kidlit book tours!

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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The World Series: baseball’s biggest stage by Matt Doeden


The World Series: baseball’s biggest stage by Matt Doeden. 64 p. Spectacular Sports series. Millbrook Press/ Lerner Publishing Group, March, 2014. 9781467718967.

Looking for a nice addition to you 796 collection? Have you a few baseball enthusiasts in your reading community? The World Series might be just the ticket for fans of the game. Hop on over to Proseandkahn for the rest of the review!


Big Tractor

Big Tractor 1790Big Tractor
by Nathan Clement
32 pages; ages 4- 8
Boyds Mills Press, 2015

You don’t need to live on a farm to love tractors. This book introduces young children to all the different things a tractor does on the farm, and lets them get a good look at the huge wheels and the implements.

The text is simple, with two lines of text on each page. It begins with early spring: “Wake up, Ol’ Partner,” says the farmer, pushing the barn doors open. It’s time to hitch up the plow. Then disc the soil and plant the corn (or soybeans or…).

Readers follow the seasons through the work of the tractor. I like the break Tractor gets when the combines head into the wheat field … tractor can hang out in the shade sipping lemonade. But then, before you know it, tractor’s back to work harvesting corn – a job that runs into overtime. Good thing tractor comes with headlights.

Finally, after all that hard work it’s time for some fun – a hayride! And then a well-deserved rest.

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2015 Sue Heavenrich All Rights Reserved. Site Meter


Touch the Brightest Star

Touch the Brightest Star
written and illustrated by Christie Matheson
2015 (Greenwillow Books)
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher

Close your eyes and breathe in deeply.
Nod your head if you feel sleepy.

Nonfiction as a toddler bedtime story? Got one right here. Each rhyming two page spread progressively takes the reader from sunset to sunrise. Readers are encouraged to participate physically with the book. In the beginning, you are asked to “wave good-bye” to the sun. Fireflies show up to be pressed and light up the sky. Create a breeze by blowing and pat a deer that is wandering by. Touch the sky and a star appears. Find the brightest star and make a wish. Trace the Big and Little Dippers with your finger and rub an owl’s head before sending them off to bed. Now close your eyes because you are getting sleepy too.

Touch the Brightest Star is a great way to cap the day with a toddler. The interactivity of the book will be a big hit. Just be prepared to do everything in order and don’t you dare skip a step. Your toddler will call you on the carpet. The illustrations are beautiful and will lead to discussions about animals and the stars. Information in the back matter will further illuminate those discussions.

This book is an excellent companion to Matheson’s Tap the Magic Tree. I will warn you that you may need to buy two copies because one of them will be loved to pieces.

Head over to NC Teacher Stuff for more posts about books. Or check your Facebook picture of your cat to see if you have garnered more likes. I’ve done that plenty of times.