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Practically Paradise
Inside Practically Paradise

Easter Engines – a Thomas and Friends Step into Reading 2 with a Giveaway


Easter Engines – a Thomas & Friends Step into Reading 2. New preschoolers and kindergartners relate to trains and to Thomas the Tank Engine. For students who may have never had an adult read to them, finding Thomas & Friends books in their school library gives them something to relate. How many of you have […]

Don’t say “Gay” bill

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My views do not represent my school, my employer, any organization to which I belong, my family, my church, the organization that promotes this blog, etc. My views come from my heart and from my experiences as a teacher/librarian since the mid 1980’s. I am invoking my right to Free Speech. I want the legislators […]

Fandango Stew and “Why you should go up and down every row of exhibit halls”


The placement of an Exhibit hall booth is a science. Those vendors with the best placement are probably paying the most money and have an established exhibit hall history. But there are other factors that determine where booths of vendors are located. Sometimes there are special rows that are intended to highlight special interests like […]

If you hit a Bad Day?

If you write a blog, participate in Social Media, tweet, skype, or chat on facebook, your life is public. When things are going well, everyone can celebrate with you. When things don’t go as smoothly, you have choices how you can react. You can share it all openly. This could result in several scenarios: Others […]

Scholastic’s 100 best children’s books

Scholastic put together a list of the 100 best children’s books (and the top 10 as well). We don’t have to agree, but  the list is interesting: I think the list is too broad, but I’d love your opinion. Would you have split the list? Two years ago I asked for your picks for the […]

NJASL and CISSL’s study on benefits of school libraries

I’ve been waiting for information on this study so appreciate Patricia Sarles sharing notice of publication on the AASL forum: Three-year study asserts benefits of school libraries on student learning. An executive summary and the full report, “The New Jersey Study of School Libraries: One Common Goal — Student Learning,” are available online at Take […]

Robert Sabuda – winner of Sydney Taylor Book Award visits Practically Paradise


Artist Robert Sabuda joins us in Practically Paradise today. Robert Sabuda and Michael J. Rosen’s pop-up creation extraordinaire (AKA book) Chanukah Lights is the 2012 Winner of the Sydney Taylor Book Awards, Younger Readers category. Have you had a chance to hold this book in your hands? If not, be sure to view this video […]

Science Fiction loses author John Christopher


Rest In Peace John Christopher (Christopher Samuel Youd). Christopher’s series, The Tripods, was a popular pick for me to put in students’ hands for three decades to introduce them to science fiction. My students loved his work. Although the Tripods trilogy was released in the 60’s, I didn’t discover the series until the prequel was […]

Into the Outdoors by Susan Gal


I almost missed this book while I was in such a hurry to get outside and enjoy the sunshine and 65 degree temps in Tennessee. Into the Outdoors by Susan Gal has appealing illustrations created using charcoal on paper and digital collage. Unusually for me, I didn’t care as much about the story as I […]

Nonfiction Monday on Tuesday iScience


I’m so fortunate to have some of Norwood House new iScience titles in our collection. They demonstrate the scientific inquiry method in complex ways but are easily understood by students. In fact, I find the students understand the titles better than the teachers and are willing to listen to each read aloud. The students don’t […]