Monthly Archives: October 2016

Reynolds’ Ish and Flipgrid

As I was suffering from post-book fair fatigue I decided to read a good book to 2nd and 3rd graders, one that would illicit some discussion, strong opinions, or creative thinking.  Since I had read Peter H.Reynolds’ book, The Dot, during September as part of our Dot Day Celebration, I chose his book, Ish, as a follow up.  I figured the students would be familiar with The Dot and remember it pretty clearly.

I began with a brief discussion about what the expression “ish” meant.  At least one student in each class nailed it, with answers like, “it means kind of” or “it means you’re close.” After reading the book, I asked the students to consider how the books were the same, how the characters exhibited any IB/PYP Learner Profiles or Attitudes, who was their favorite character, etc.

Ish Was a Hit!

The students all really enjoyed the book and most immediately made the connection between the books (characters who think they can’t create or stop creating, but are inspired by someone else). I gave each student an index card and had them write their reflection on it. One of the 2nd grade students even described Marisol’s behavior as “sister-ish”.



I used Flipgrid as a way for the students to record and share their responses. One second grade student made a very interesting comment as soon as I held up copies of The Dot and Ish and told the students that we were going to read another book by Peter Reynolds.  He said that he (the boy on the cover of Ish) is the same boy at the end of The Dot!  I never made that connection.  I replied, maybe he is, we don’t really know.img_0025

Check out our Flipgrids.  They are a work in progress as I continue to read to students this week and next.

Flipgrid codes:  and



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Filed under Books, Social media, Students using technology, Uncategorized

Moveable (or Movable)* Tables in the Library

I am one happy camper today.  I would love to have new flexible seating and tables in my library media center, but I am stuck with sturdy, solid oak tables and chairs.  These things were made to last (were purchased probably about 20 years ago).  The tables are REALLY heavy and as a result they get dragged when we need to move them.

I read an article or blog post awhile ago about a library media specialist fixing up her library on the cheap.  She added casters to her table legs and I thought, “I can do that.” Or rather, I thought, “My handy husband can do that.”  And he did!

My library media committee and I discussed it last school year and we are just getting around to doing it.  The first table was done today and two more on the chopping block tomorrow morning.

Supplies Needed

We bought locking casters at Lowe’s and it ran about $20 a table.  Not really cheap, but a heck of a lot cheaper than new tables!

My husband brought his saw, drill, etc. from home.  I might have been able to have our school system facilities department do it, but the quality is not consistent there.

I am so giddy that I can’t wait until Thursday when the Scholastic Book Fair arrives and I will have (by then) 3 tables that I can move just by pushing with my hand!  We bought all the casters that Lowe’s has for now, so the other 4 tables will get the chop later.  We cut an extra one inch off the legs as the tables were really too high for the kindergarten through 2nd grade students.  This new, shorter version should be more comfortable for the majority of our students.


We will be more likely to move tables around after all them are converted.  This will help not only with working with students, but also with the other staff meetings, showers, etc. that are held in the library media center.  The legs of some of the tables are a bit wobbly from years of dragging around.  My husband thinks the tables weigh about 80 pounds!


The point of no return!


It helps to have a handy husband with all the necessary tools!


It’s funny to be so excited by this, but it is going to make my life so much easier!

*Apparently either spelling is acceptable…I checked!


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