Saturday, November 19, 2011

Free Sites That Teach Literacy

These sites are great practice for students learning how to read.

Starfall’s Learn to Read Site   (K – 1st grade)
This site contains an easy way to access letters and letter sounds by moving the cursor over the block.  There are 4 different activities listed on the left hand side of the page with music and/or sound.  A number of other activities or videos are available on the right hand side of the page and include these concepts:  calendar, 100th day, and holidays.

Gameaquarium   (K– 4th grade)
There are many games on Gameaquarium that are educational.  The second web address listed is helps with beginning sounds of letters.

Family Learning (K-2nd grade)
This site contains many games that give students a place to practice phonics.  They tend to be at a medium level or higher.

Soft Schools  (K-8th grade)
This site has no sound.  It contains many games that include spelling.  There are grammar games for older students.

Game Goo Learning That Sticks  (K-4th grade)
A more advanced game for alphabetizing the alphabet and such.

Between the Lions (K-2nd grade)
Good for practicing phonics, can be used with the younger kids.

Synthetic Phonics (K-3rd grade)
There are two free sites that can be reached from the blue box in the top section of the page.  At this time only the first site is available.  The letters are listed as well as different vowel sounds.  If you move the cursor over the letter then you hear the phonemic sound of that letter. 

Sesame Street (K-2grade)

Red Clover Award Nominees for 2011 - 2012

Each year a committee comprised of teachers, librarians and sponsers choose 10 nominees for the Red Clover Award Program from both fiction and non-fiction picture books published in the previous year.  More information about the program can be found at Red Clover Program website,

This year's nominees are as follows:

A Pig Parade Is a Terrible Idea
Michael Ian Black



Art & Max
David Wiesner

Bink & Gollie
Kate DiCammillo and Alison McGhee

Born Yesterday:  The Diary of a Young Journalist
James Solheim

I Know Here
Laurel Crozea

Mirror, Mirror
Marilyn Singer

Nabeel’s New Pants: An Eid Tale
Fawzia Gilani-Williams

Stand Straight Ella Kate
Kate Klise

Who Stole Mona Lisa?
Ruthie  Knapp     

Wonder Horse
Emily Arnold McCully,








Wednesday, November 2, 2011

DCF Books 2001 - 2012

Dorothy Canfield Fisher Nominees
A list of the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Nominees with summaries of each book can be found at

More information about the DCF Award as well as previous winners and nominees can be seen at the Dorothy Canfield Fisher site located at

Here are the Dorothy Canfield Fisher 2011 - 2012 DCF nominees:

Angleberger, Tom
The Strange Case of Origami Yoda
4 up
Balliett, Blue
The Danger Box
5 up
Conly, Jane
Murder Afloat
5 up
Couloumbis, Audrey
Random House
4 up
Draper, Sharon M.
Out of My Mind
5 up
Erskine, Kathryn
5 up
Falls, Kat
Dark Life
6 up
Gibbs, Stuart
Belly Up
S & S
5 up
Henson, Heather
Dream of Night
6 up
Holm, Jennifer
Turtle in Paradise
Random House
5 up
Kimmel, Elizabeth Cody
The Reinvention of Moxie Roosevelt
5 up
Klass, David
Stuck on Earth
7 up
Klise, Kate
Feiwel & Friends
6 up
Levy, Debbie
The Year of Goodbyes
6 up
Lord, Cynthia
Touch Blue
5 up
Lupica, Mike
5 up
McMullan, Margaret
Sources of Light
Houghton Harcourt
7 up
Messner, Kate
Sugar and Ice
5 up
Mitchell, Don
Driven: A Photobiography of Henry Ford
National Geographic
5 up
Montgomery, Sy
Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest Parrot
Houghton Harcourt
5 up
O’Connor, Barbara
The Fantastic Secret of Owen Jester
4 up
Oppel, Kenneth
Half Brother
7 up
Resau, Laura
Star in the Forest
4 up
Rhodes, Jewell Parker
Ninth Ward
Little, Brown
4 up
Shulman, Polly
The Grimm Legacy
7 up
Silberberg, Alan
Milo: Sticky Notes and Brain Freeze
5 up
Sonnenblick, Jordan
After Ever After
6 up
Telgemeier, Raina
5 up
Williams-Garcia, Rita
One Crazy Summer
5 up
Zafon, Carlos Ruiz
The Prince of Mist
Little, Brown
7 up