We interrupt this blog for breaking news. “Humor Me” is taking a summer blog break. It will return at the end of July to continue to inform and entertain the masses. See you then!
Archive for June 2012
Summer vacation is here. It’s time to get down to serious reading business. The first book I’ve chosen is Keeper written by Kathi Appelt and illustrated by August Hall. I can see those lovers of children’s books shaking their heads, wondering why I haven’t read this book before now.
In my pile of reading material, books get shuffled around. Some books that were on top end up at the bottom of the pile. Alas, that’s what happened to Keeper. Never fear. It has been rescued and is beside me this very minute, waiting patiently for me to open its magical pages.
Keeper will be a keeper as I begin my summer reading adventures.
A few other books I’ll be reading this summer are:
Do you have a favorite middle-grade book to recommend?
In the past three weeks I’ve been to three graduations – college, high school, and grade school. On Sunday, one of the young speakers at the grade school graduation I attended told his classmates that their graduation would be something they would always remember and they would maintain their friendships throughout the years.
I scoured my brain for graduation memories. This is what I came up with. In grade school, we wore royal blue caps and gowns and there were four-two graduates – all from one eighth grade class. My high school graduation was hot. The only picture I have of my graduation shows me in an orange, sleeveless dress with perspiration stains under my arms. Not cool! At my college graduation, we sweltered in the football stadium stands, and my family celebrated by taking me out to Roy Roger’s Roast Beef. Not too memorable!
And what about those friendships the young speaker spoke of maintaining throughout the years? In reality, true-blue friends are hard to find. People change. Times change. You lose contact. A friendship that weathers the test of time is a true friendship. Consider yourself successful if you have one of those priceless friends.
Memories of graduations fade, but friends don’t. I hope those grade school graduates work to keep their special friendships because, no matter what, a true friend will always be there with you.
What are your graduation memories?
Books for Graduation Gifts:
Yay, You! : Moving Out, Moving Up, Moving On written and illustrated by Sandra Boynton (Little Simon, 2001)
I Knew You Could! written by Craig Dorfman and illustrated by Christina Ong (Grosset & Dunlap, 2003)
Reach for the Stars: and Other Advice for Life’s Journey written and illustrated by Serge Bloch (Sterling, 2010)
Oh, the Places You’ll Go! written and illustrated by Dr. Seuss (Random House, 1990)
If you had the opportunity to read the blog I posted about baseball last year, you know my feelings about the sport. If you haven’t had the chance to read it, you can see it here.
Since I last expressed my true feelings on the All-American game, nothing has changed. I still find baseball uninspiring. Not even peanuts and Cracker Jacks can pique my interest. Maybe a beer … or two … or three … or four would help, but I doubt it. I’d just end up with a headache and feeling bloated.
I must admit not all things about baseball are boring. I’ve learned to appreciate a few baseball terms – like cheese, donut, lollipop, meatball, and pancake. They conjure up some pretty delicious thoughts. On the other hand, the term spit ball grosses me out.
Cool Baseball Facts, written by Kathryn Clay, is a book that has some interesting information. The reading level is for younger students, but I’ve used the book with older groups, too. I pitch questions at them from the facts included in the book. Sometimes they get a hit. Other times they strike out. It’s a great way to get them actively involved.
Baseball isn’t for everyone, but I don’t want to drop the ball when it comes to giving others the opportunity to immerse themselves in the sport. Just because I’m the one out in left field doesn’t mean I’m a total screwball. I don’t want to be accused of having my foot in the bucket. I’m willing to step up to the plate and knock the cover off the ball to get kids interested in reading – even if it means reading books about baseball. Who knows, with the right attitude, this could be a whole new ball game for me!
Baseball picture books I recommend:
How Georgie Radbourn Saved Baseball written and illustrated by David Shannon (Blue Sky Press, 2012)
Bats at the Ballgame written and illustrated by Brian Lies (Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 2010)
Baseball Saved Us written by Ken Mochizuki and illustrated by Dom Lee (Lee & Low Books, 1995)