BCS 10th Graders and BNS Kindergartners: Bringing Books Alive!

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Karmela’s 10th Grade Crew worked with the BNS/BCS Library on a great project that culminated in them writing book reviews for the library blog and reading aloud to Kori’s kindergartners. Their experience began in the library, where they learned about the stages of child development and what makes a book appropriate for the five year old reader. Next, they read a number of books, using a set of criteria based on the concept of “kindness,” that helped them decide what books were best for their kindergarten audience. After reading their chosen books with Kori’s class, they submitted their reviews to the library for publication.

imgres-1The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat is an amazing book to read to kindergartners because it shows different ways the main character is friendly as he tries to make friends with a real kid. The book has great pictures that capture the character of Beekle, which will grab kids’ attention and connect to their imaginations. In the story, Beekle notices how every imaginary character has a kid. He travels the world, looking for adventure, and eventually finds his own kid to share adventures with. Through Beekle, kids will know more about being friendly when they see another child alone and in need of a friend, both imaginary and real. Cindy Xique

imgres-2Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman is a wonderful book for children that teaches them kindness in a fun way! The book provides loveable characters that help each other and are kind to each other. A five year old will understand the idea of helping others by reading this book. It even shows what not to do in a simple and understanding way. The book builds up the kindness in the story, so that the readers will copy the kind actions. –Diana Saavedra

Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman is a great book to read to kindergartners because it teaches them that it is best to help each other even if you are different. Another good thing about the book is that the pictures are big, colorful, and funny and will make the students laugh. It shows the robot trying to put oil in the boy because he thinks that will help the boy wake up! Studies show that having big colorful books and having funny pictures will have kindergartners wanting more and have them more interested in the story. –Alex Ariza

imgres-3Little Cub by Olivier Dunrea is a good book to read to kindergartners because it helps children realize that sometimes it is okay to go out of your way to help others get over their fears. Additionally, it also shows them that you don’t have to feel embarrassed to express your feelings to others. The book also has a lot of pictures, so if they don’t really understand what they are reading, they can look at the pictures and try to match the words up. I think it would give them a little buzz on what the words are. –Shaquia Jones

imgres-5Maple by Lori Nichols is a excellent book for kindergartners because it will help them learn about kindness. Here is an example from the text: “Then one day, Maple noticed her tree was bare. Maple was worried her tree might get cold. Maple took off her jacket and gave it to the tree to stay warm.” This section of the book shows that giving something to a person or thing is being kind because you’re looking out for that person or thing. The children can now understand what kindness really means and how it is used. –Nyla Tyndall

imgres-4My Teacher is a Monster by Peter Brown  is not only funny, it allows kids to learn that sometimes there is a need for discipline. In the story, the teacher, Ms. Kirby, appears as a monster to Robert because he doesn’t like the way she disciplines the class. Toward the end of the book, Ms. Kirby appears as a regular looking teacher because Robert learned that what Ms. Kirby did or said to him was for him to become not only a better student but a better person as well. Some of the core values this book touches upon include being open-minded and kind. I highly suggest that you pick up this humorous, colorful book. Ayana Barnette

My Teacher Is a Monster by Peter Brown is a very appealing to a child’s eye. It consists of comedy, creativity, and enlightenment. Throughout the book I felt engaged. A young boy named Bobby has the worst teacher, in his opinion. She is loud, and she yells a lot. She is a monster! Luckily for Bobby, he can go to his favorite spot in the park on weekends to play. Until one day, he finds his teacher there! Over the course of one day, Bobby learns that monsters are not always what they seem. Each page is filled with shocking details that will have kids reading the story again and again. Peter Brown takes on a universal theme, and adds his own comedic style to create a book on being kind. In conclusion, I highly suggest that you purchase a copy of this humorous and colorful book.  –Najah Khalil

imgres-8Number One Sam by Greg Pizzoli is a good book to read to kindergartners because it teaches them about kindness. Sam risks losing his title as the #1 racer to save the lives of baby chicks. This book will also help to strengthen kindergartners’ reading skills because it teaches the them many different words to add to their vocabulary. –Melissa Melendez

imgres-7Sparky by Jenny Offill and Chris Appelhans is a good book to read to kindergartners because it shows them how the main character never gives up on trying to prove that her pet is great. One of the pictures shows the girl trying to train her pet sloth, Sparky, to do tricks. It is not a great success. Sparky only sits there trying to sleep. The book has easy words to understand, and the pictures look like they are painted out, which should be very attractive to kindergartners. This book will teach them to never give up even if it might not work out the way they want it to. –Mohamed Abdullah

imgres-6Tap Tap Boom Boom by Elizabeth Bluemle, is a great story for kids because it demonstrates kindness, as well as open-mindedness. For example, when people in the book don’t know each other but start talking and making conversation, it shows how not to be afraid to make friends. It also shows that sharing ideas is important. Rhyming and pattern recognition are also kid-friendly features. –Aaron Davila

Tap Tap Boom Boom by Elizabeth Bluemle is a great book about kindness for small children. There is a lot of rhyming and the setting is NYC, which students can connect to. The book has a sense of collaboration and kindness.The colorful illustrations combine real life and illustration. In the book, everyone is just enjoying their day until it starts raining and everyone rushes to seek shelter. People run into the train station for asylum from the rain, and while waiting for the rain to stop, they develop friendships. This sets the mood of going from happiness, to sadness, and back again. –Andrea Diaz

A Page Turners Review of “The Girl Who Could Fly” by Victoria Lakeman

imgres-1By Sophia

The Girl Who Could Fly is about a girl named Piper who lives in a small town with her mom and dad. But she is no ordinary girl, in her sleep she starts to float! Her parents take her to a doctor, but the doctor doesn’t believe her, and says nothing is wrong. After that her mom isolates Piper. She can’t play with the neighborhood kids or go to parties. She is home schooled. But one day her mom lets her go to a picnic if she promises that she won’t fly. She makes some friends, but they wonder why they never see her. At the end of the picnic, all the kids play a big game of baseball. Piper is chosen last. She never catches the ball, and she gets made fun of. She gets angry. To catch the ball, she flies, thinking they would think it cool. Everyone freaks out and runs! The next thing you know she is in the newspaper, and now the world knows. A day later a strange beautiful lady comes and asks Piper to come to a special school with kids that have powers like her. She excitedly goes with the lady. But when she gets to the school strange things happen. Will Piper save the school that seems nice but is really a prison? Can she do it alone? ….

The Girl Who Could Fly is a great and exciting book. It is full of detail and description. It is written very well. It is interesting from the start and full of suspense. It shows the great value of friendship and trust, making it more of a heartwarming book. The book has different genres: mystery and suspense, and other aspects to it. My only issue with this book is that sometimes you know something that the character doesn’t yet. For example, you already know who is evil when the character is still getting to it. But that is not an issue for everyone. In all, it is a great book, and I loved it.

Story Told Through Poetry: A Page Turners Review of “Owl Moon” by by Jane Yolen and John Schoenherr (Illustrator)

imgresBy Sophia

Owl Moon is a picture book about a boy and his dad who go owling. Owling is calling out for owls and hoping that they return the call. It is told by the boy in a very descriptive way. The boy has wanted to go owling all his life and he knows what to do from his older brothers. He explains all of his senses and emotions as he goes into the woods. The boy and his father call out, “Whoooo, whoooo,” and they get answered under the Owl Moon.

Owl Moon is a story told though poetry. This descriptive book makes you feel like you are there. You see and feel what the character does.Not only is the writing fantastic, but the illustrations are great. They tell the story in a different way, explain, and give a feel to this poetry-based book.

I loved Owl Moon; it inspires young readers and writers. I would highly recommend it, not to mention the 1988 Caldecott medal it won!

Magical, but Not Fantasy: A Page Turners Review of Kate Milford’s “Green Glass House”

61oAigRWnBL._AA160_By Maize

It was supposed to be a nice, relaxing break, getting snowed in while sitting near a fire place. Then tons of unexpected visitors come to Milo Pine’s family’s inn in Nagspeak. Milo, a kid adopted from China by the lovely couple Nora and Ben Pine, has his confidence due to change. A quiet break from school becomes a confusing mixup and his confidence slowly drops. When almost all the characters’ identities turn out to be a scam, Milo has to restore order to the inn before all becomes chaos.

I thought this book was fantastically written and I couldn’t stop reading it. The description of the inn’s amazing stained glass windows, the ride up to the inn and the whilfarber whirlwind are almost . I thought this book was incredibly descriptive and secretive. Overall I thought it was fabulous.

For Anyone Who Gets Nervous About Competition: A Page Turners Review of Kate Messner’s “Sugar And Ice”

51nQbvmc1uL._AA160_by Maizie

In Sugar And Ice by Kate Messner, the main character Claire is not rich. She isn’t poor either, but she could never dream of training somewhere as fancy as the Lake Placid Olympic skating rink.

Things take a turn when a Russian coach (and former Olympics star) takes her aside after a show and offers her a scholarship. But things take another turn as schoolwork and the demanding schedule finally catches up to her. Her fellow ice skaters’ drama does not make her life any more enjoyable.

I can totally relate to all the nervous feelings Claire gets around competitions. The book is from the point of view the main character, which is interesting to know her point of view on things and thoughts. I also thought this book was very inspiring. From facing her fear of competition to making a painstaking decision, it really touched me. Overall this book’s description and vocabulary was nice, the writing I loved, and all together I thought the book was fabulous.

Don’t Judge This Book by Its Cover! A Page Turners Review of “Flyaway” by Lucy Christopher


by Isa

“Flyaway” by Lucy Christopher is an amazing book about a girl’s life. Her life may be different than others, but it is still her life. She and her father love birds, especially swans. They love them so much because the swans are so fascinating, and have such amazing features. It is a hobby that both of them have. They are running after a flock of swans one day, when her father falls, and gets really hurt. He has tons of operations, but throughout the time he is in the hospital, she meets Harry, a boy who doesn’t tease her about her fascination of birds. She finds a particular swan that acts very weird and she gets attached to the beautiful white bird.

This book is good for everyone, even someone who doesn’t have a particular favoring of birds–like me. The reason for that is because this book also describes what the hospital is like. The author talks about school, and being a younger sibling in a different situation than most younger siblings. Lucy Christopher does a good job of describing the scene to you, and how the main character feels at the time.

This book may not look so interesting, but remember! Don’t judge a book by its cover! Read the reviews, and the first few pages to see if you get into it. I hope you like this book as much as me!!!!!!!!!


Magic, Fantasy, Adventure…and a Boy Who Wonders “Why Me?”: A Page Turners Review of Anne Ursu’s “The Real Boy”

51KkbHTKIqL._AA160_by Anna

In Anne Ursu’s The Real Boy, Oscar isn’t very normal. For one thing: he hates being around people, just regular people, normal humans. The forest is the only place where he feels at home. Other than being shy, Oscar is also an intelligent eleven year-old. He taught himself to read and he knows how to make a healing salve, no problemo. He has lived a life of being teased and bullied by Wolf, his master’s apprentice, and people at his foster home in the East. He speaks in whispers and wonders: Why me?

It all started with a country in a big continent. The country had magic protecting all its walls, and a big trading business with other countries. Wizards lived here, and weaved in with simple towns people. When they were about to die, they planted their feet in the soil and grew into trees. But the wizards died out, right after the country was struck by the Plague. Then came the sorcerers, then magicians. This is the time when Oscar lives. He does everything on a schedule, and nothing else. He is a hand (servant) for a powerful magician named Caleb in the Barrow, near to the Shining City, where the duke lives. All the people in the Shining City are perfect, and buy all their magical ointment and amulets and things in the Barrow. After the shocking and awful death of Wolf and disappearance of Master Robinson’s apprentice, Oscar meets Callie, the healer’s apprentice. They become close friends, and teach each other things, like names of herbs, and how to be respectful to strangers. But then the perfect children of the Shining City fall ill, and Caleb and Madam Mariel (the healer) are gone. Only Callie, and maybe Oscar will be able to save them. Is Oscar ready to reach out and accept the adventure he has in front of him? But, why is the city so–sparkly? Or is there just a flaw in history?

I really liked all the detail Anne Ursu used. For example, “There was a purple wound blossoming on her side.” This example made me feel as if I was in the moment. I also find her characters very unique and very well done. Every important character has a signature move. Callie’s is raising her eyebrows; Oscar’s is not looking people in the eye and concentrating on small things.

The type of reader that would love this book should be into fantasy and be on a higher level of reading. I say this because the main purpose of the book is about how magic affects the city and how Oscar lives with it, and the book is quite thick and contains certain sophisticated words and description. Such as, “Caleb was nothing but a shell, a lifeless shell.” I really liked this book and living in the world of Oscar and Callie.

Action and Adventure that Teaches and Inspires: A Page Turners Review of “Chasing Vermeer” by Blue Balliett

images-1By Sophia

12,12,12,12,12,12,12,12,12,12,12,12. The number 12 plays a big role in Chasing Vermeer. It appears in many of the clues in the mystery.

Chasing Vermeer is about a girl named Perta and a boy named Calder. They are in the same class but don’t really know each other. Calder always has his pentominoes and Perta her notebook. Pentominoes are different letters that you can make into shapes. They have a very strange teacher who loves art. Perta and Calder get in trouble, and develop a friendship. Then an art piece goes missing, an art piece that Perta and Calder were going to see for its opening. Perta and Calder know secret information about the missing art, and from this they form theories about thief’s identity. They get tangled in a twisting, exciting art mystery involving many interesting characters.

I really liked this book. It is very well written, and as you read it you can’t stop, you get sucked up in the book. It is full of description and it makes you feel like you know the characters. The book is full of action, adventure, but also teaches you, and can inspire you. My only criticism is it sometimes gets confusing and the next thing you know they solved something. Also some characters are introduced but not explained. But overall it is a great book and I would recommend it.

A Fragile Girl with a Secret: A Page Turners Review of “The Mark of the Dragonfly” by Jaleigh Johnson

By Isa

51qbFK6iPyL._AA160_The Mark of the Dragonfly is about a girl from a town where only scrappers live. There are meteor storms often, and things from the other worlds come down with them. Scrappers live on these objects, selling them to get food.

One day Piper is out in a meteor storm, looking for her friend, braving the poisonous green dust in the air. As Piper wanders around after the meteor storm, she finds more than just objects. She finds an unconscious girl who cannot survive without her. They find themselves on a train, running from a man who would stop at nothing to get that girl. Will she stay with Piper and live, or will she end up with the man she calls a wolf? Why can’t she survive without Piper? Is it because she is so fragile, or because she is hiding a deep dark secret that she doesn’t even remember?

I really loved this book, because it has many details, some that could be possible, and some that are just fantasy. It makes a very good mix. The characters are well made, and very interesting. All of them started out in a bad place, and by the end of the book are in the best place that they could dream of. All of them have become better people, and their personalities are totally different by the end of the book.

When I finished this book, I was laughing because it was a happy ending, and crying because I had finished it, and the story was over.

I hope everybody who reads this book loves it too.

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