Sunday, April 11, 2010

Vacation Reading

Time I started reading again, too. Or at least writing about it.

Eat, Pray, Love
by Elizabeth Gilbert

Genre: memoir Rating: (out of 10): 7
I had wanted to read this for awhile. Found a copy of it in the villa we stayed in over spring break. I liked the middle section, about her time in India, the best. I expected more from the end of the book than just "I'm in love, life is good".

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Associate by John Grisham
Genre: suspense, law Rating: (out of 10): 5
This was pretty standard Grisham. A quick, light read.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Just Missed

I was short by two for the year. But I have a good start to this one!

Hate that Cat
by Sharon Creech

Genre: Children's lit, poetry Rating: (out of 10): 9
I loved using Hate that Dog to teach my kids poetry. Now there is a sequel! This one contains onomotopoeia, alliteration, etc. I'm plotting how to get my hands on 30 copies already...

Schuyler's Monster by Rob Rummel-Hudson
Genre: Memoir, parenting Rating: (out of 10): 8
The reviews of this book were right on the mark. I'd read enough of his blog to know what to expect in this book, and that took away from it a little bit.

Charlie Bone and the Beast by Jenny Nimmo
Genre: Fantasy, Children's Literature Rating: (out of 10): 7
I liked #5 better, but this one continued the series... It didn't move much more toward the climax... How many books are there?

Charlie Bone and the Shadow by Jenny Nimmo
Genre: Fantasy, Children's Literature Rating: (out of 10): 7
This one left us in suspense again... What's going to happen to Billy?

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Grad School Odds and Ends

I need to record some titles and videos I'd like to read/see at some point somewhere. I was going through my grad school files cleaning things out in the kids' room and found some titles. So this is the list...

The Child Called X
Chomsky- On Miseducation
Rodriguez- Hunger of Memory
Video- It's Elementary
Critical Pedagogy Reader
Spike Lee- Bamboozled
The Wooden Horse (POW camps)
Sweetness & Power by Sidney Mintz
Fart Proudly
Ruby Paine- strategies to teach dominant discourse
Kindergarten is Academic Boot Camp
Talking Sociology
Letters from a Nut
Function of Poverty (poverty is necessary)
Rebecca Sitton (spelling?)
PBS Race the power of an illusion
The Illusion of Race- PBS
A World of Diversity
Video- the tale of "o"
"Diversity not strive to acquire, instead work ot recognize" Janet Casey
Courageous Conversations about Race Singleton and Linton
Article- When the Rules are the Same, but the Game Isn't
Movie Can't Hardly wait
Jackson Katz documentary- tough guise- violence, media &...
People like us- social class in America 2003 PBS
Putnam's Bowling Alone
Book- Enough
Made in Multicultual USA- Tensions of Race, culture, Gender & Sexuality
Rethinking our classrooms: Teaching for equity and justice
White Teacher- 1979
Postman- Teaching as a subversive Activity
Book: Consumed
The Color of Fear- documentary
What the Media teaches about Diversity
Movie Lost in Translation
Oprah- School Swap 2006-2007
Bohemian Grove CA- Economic & political elite meet
The Very First Thanksgiving Day- R. G. Greene
Legends of the Fall 1994
The New World 2005
Smoke Signals 1998
In the White Man's Image
Lamar Alexander- TN suppressed study on small schools, every kid own IEP
Movie: Rise
Educational Leadership becoming citizens of the world
bell hooks- eating the other
carlos mencia- comedian
stand and deliver
movie- half nelson
Jean Anyon- Radical Possibilities, The Hidden Curriculum of School at Work
Freedom riders for the New England Primer
October Sky- movie
Their Highest Potential- Walker
Freedom Writers
David Hawkins- Univ. of Colorado
Herndon (he)- book
Journal of youth studies
Intercultural Education
Journal of Education for teaching
Comparative Education
In Schools We Trust
Deborah Meier
Rethinking Globalization
The Ecological Footprint
The Human Footprint
Origins of the Urban Crisis
Silverberg- The World Inside
The Culture of Denial- Bowers
Rethinking Freire
Permaculture in a Nutshell
Omnivores Dilemma
Jaybar Crowe- Wendell Barry
How we've come to think as westerners
Place-Based Education- Sobol, Greneweld & Smith,
Griffin & Bateson
Blessed Unrest- Paul Hawkin
hullabaloo- myspace
Being Prey- Plumwood
Wisdom of the Mythmaker- Sean...
Keith Basso- Wisdom sits in places
Spell of the Sensors
History of Sexuality- Foucoult
Changes in the Land- William Cronin
The Turning Point
The Web of Life- Pritjof Capra
H.H. Dalai Lama- Ethics for the New Millenium
Film- Ancient Futures
Cultural Denial- Chet Bowers- Handbook for Ecojustice Ed?
Polyani- The Great Transformation- bell hooks?
Freire Pedagogy of Oppressed
Book- the devil wears red shoes
Book- The Ethics of Teaching
Nel Noddings
Carol Gilling
Amy Gutmann- Democratic Education
Movie- Children in America's Schools- Kozol
Dist. of Education- Amy Gutman & Kenneth Howe
Takaki- A different time

Friday, January 2, 2009

The Last of '08

I made it to 46 in this calendar year, but I only started counting as of February 1st. Looks like I have a month to read 6 more! I'll know which post at which to start counting for 2009, though.

The Last Lecture
by Randy Pausch

Genre: Motivational Rating: (out of 10): 6
There were some great nuggets in this book, but his presentation put me off. It seemed as though he did most everything right... I liked the story style of Tuesdays with Morrie better.

Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardiner
Genre: Historical Fiction, Children's Rating: (out of 10): 9
This was a short book written at about a 3rd grade level. I was surprised at how many deep subjects it contained. There is a lot to teach from this book. The ending surprised me, too.

The Purpose of Christmas by Rick Warren
Genre: Religion Rating: (out of 10): 4
I liked the layout of the book- three distinct sections with main points following. It was easy to follow. I've just never gotten into religious reading.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling
Genre: Fantasy, Children's fables Rating: (out of 10): 7
This was a neat concept. There were 4 fables from Harry Potter's world, and then Dumbledore commented on each one afterwards to tell more about their significance. I thought two of the stories were wonderful and the others were so-so. I could see why avid Harry Potter fans would be disappointed- it was just a taste. All of the proceeds from this book also went to charity.

Charlie Bone and the Castle of Mirrors by Jenny Nimmo
Genre: Fantasy, Children's Rating: (out of 10): 8
The books are building into a great ending. I have trouble separating one from another after I've read them, but I have enjoyed the series as it has grown throughout the books. I thought the first book was pretty straightforward. Now we're getting to know more about the battle between the Red King's children and the history behind what's going on.

Charlie Bone and the Hidden King by Jenny Nimmo
Genre: Fantasy, Children's Rating: (out of 10): 9
Much like my last comments. We figure out what happened to Charlie's father in this book. Like I said, it's building.

Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke
Genre: Fantasy, Children's Rating: (out of 10): 7
Can I give two different ratings for the first and second half of the book? I felt the same way with Inkspell. I just could not get into the first half of the book- read two chapters, go to bed- there was no sense of "can't put it down" at all. The second half of the book came together beautifully- and she wrapped up the trilogy in a perfect way. It was clever, engaging, and creative... once you were past page 300 or so.

Monday, November 10, 2008

52 this year

My goal was to read 52 books this year... I'm a little behind pace. I did decide that I don't have to consider it a failure until February, though, since I didn't start keeping track here until February.

Letters to a Young Teacher by Jonathan Kozol
Genre: Education Rating: (out of 10): 8
I'm not such a young teacher anymore, and during parts of this I felt as though he were preaching to the choir... but that's what Kozol is about. He points out inequities and injustices in education for the larger population. There are several chapters in here that would be great to read as a staff at our school, and a few that I want Dave to read to understand the problem with why schools work the way they do. It is reaffirming to read things I know to be true about education in print- as if there is hope out there for turning things around.

Brisinger by Christopher Paolini
Genre: Children's Literature, Fantasy Rating: (out of 10): 8.5
Dave pointed out that this was a "transitional" book, and I had to agree... but I loved it. This book bridges the gap between his 3rd and the final 5th book in the series. While it was huge, the book kept moving quickly enough that I read it in a week. There was a lot of character development, and even though it stayed away from the romance angle (which I was intrigued by), I still found it interesting. It also revealed how Galbatorix has so much power... I thought it was neat.

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum, Ph. D.
Genre: Education, African American Studies Rating: (out of 10): 6.5
This was a book I started two years ago and put down. The book would be interesting and helpful had I not been involved in my masters' program at EMU. I feel like this would have been a good book to read during one of the classes, since I gained most of the knowledge and perspective of how racial identity forms in several of my classes.

A Young People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn, Adapted by Rebecca Stefoff
Genre: History, Textbook for Kids Rating: (out of 10): 7.5
Zinn writes revisionist history, in other words, history from the point of view of the losers. It is extremely interesting, but the format was not something I can use in my classroom. I was hoping for some primary source documents and writing from other perspective to use, but it was more narrative and a little harder than my fourth graders could handle. Still, interesting, and I finished this book quickly, unlike the adult version. I've been working on it for years.

Playing for Pizza by John Grisham
Genre: Realistic Fiction Rating: (out of 10): 7
This was not in his normal genre of law. The book was about a washed-up NFL quarterback who ended up playing semi-pro football in Italy. I loved the parts about Italy and food (great reminders of our trip in March). I made Dave read the book because some of the description of food was so realistic. Otherwise, the book was alright. It had a lot of football and was a bit of a "coming-of-age" story. A quick read.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Catching Up

The Amulet of Samarkand: The Bartimaeus Trilogy Book 1 by Jonathan Stroud
Genre: Children's Literature, Fantasy Rating: (out of 10): 7.5
The series was set in London during the American Revolution (but for some reason the magicians had cars). The series revolved around the conflict between the magicians running the government and the commoners. I really enjoyed the differing perspectives in the whole series of these books. It was cleverly written, for some reason just not a "can't put down" book.

The Golem's Eye: The Bartimaeus Trilogy Book 2 by Jonathan Stroud
Genre: Children's Literature, Fantasy Rating: (out of 10): 8.5
This book had twists and turns, and it took me about the whole thing to figure out who the villain behind the golem was. The character development of the main character was interesting as well.

Ptolemy's Gate: The Bartimaeus Trilogy Book 3 by Jonathan Stroud
Genre: Children's Literature, Fantasy Rating: (out of 10): 8
The third book tied up some questions about the past of the characters and gave background information. It was really tied up very well. I just didn't love the series. Great writing, though.

Settling in Michigan by Lynne Deur
Genre: Primary source, history Rating: (out of 10): 6.5
Short stories in this book gave accounts of early Michigan. Useful for teaching.

Orphan Trains: Researching American History by Deitch & Bracken
Genre: Primary Source, history Rating: (out of 10): 8
This book contains a variety of types of sources: newspaper, firsthand accounts, adoption documents, etc. Very complete picture of what the orphan trains were like. It will be indispensable for my unit.

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
Genre: Fantasy Rating: (out of 10): 8.5
I'm tempted to give two ratings: One for the beginning of the book and one for the end. I thought that the climax of the book was about halfway through, and the rest was superfluous. Dave did point out to me that there were some loose ends that needed to be tied up. The plot was predictable as it was heavily foreshadowed in the beginning of the book, but enjoyable nonetheless.

The Green Book by Jill Paton Walsh
Genre: Children's Literature, Science Fiction Rating: (out of 10): 6
The book is about a group of people who are forced to evacuate Earth and live on an unknown planet. I am thinking about starting the year with a space theme, and I heard of this book from an example unit. The book was a little strange, though... not sure it will accomplish what it is meant to accomplish as an introduction to the year, and afraid that it will scare the kids- make them worry about the end of the world. We'll see. I may try it.