Monday, July 29, 2019

It's Monday! What are you reading? 7-29-19

It's Monday! What are you reading? Is a wonderful community of readers, teachers, and librarians. Hosted by Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers, participants share their reading adventures from the past week along with their reading plans for the week ahead.

My Monday posts are generally just a highlight of what I've been reading during the week so if you'd like to see all that I've been reading, follow my Goodreads page.

Hey friends! It's been a minute. It's hard to write about everything I've been reading when what I've been reading lately has been award committee reading. 

Here's what I've been up to lately:

  1. I got a new job! I'm still a school librarian but it will be at a school in the same town where I live so the commute is shorter AND the pay is better. 
  2. I'm back in grad school. Wayne State University just introduced an experimental graduate program for teachers to get their media specialist certification in Michigan for only 15 credits. Since I don't have an official librarian degree, this is a great way to get my certification so I can make myself legit. :) 
  3. I was named chair of the 2020 Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award committee. I am elated at this appointment because I love the Walden Award so much. 
  4. The 2019 Walden Award was just announced last week and I love every single one of these books so much. 

The winner is: 
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

The finalists are:
Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough
The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson
Darius the Great is Not Okay by Adib Khorram
The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X. R. Pan

I hope if you haven't read any of these books yet and you teach middle or high school students, you consider reading them and sharing them with your students. The criteria of the Walden Award are meant to encourage teachers to use them in the classroom. They are: 1. Literary merit 2. widespread teen appeal 3. Positive approach to life.

Here are a few books I've read and loved lately that were outside of my Walden reading:

Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos by Lucy Knisley
This book made me laugh, it made me cry, it made me... rage. 

Rage for the lack of education in reproductive health in our country.
Rage for the U.S.'s increasing maternal mortality rate. 
Rage that for our all focus on the baby's health, we ignore the mother. 
Rage that I had to learn these things in a graphic memoir because no one seems to care about the reproductive health of women in this country. 

This book might be Lucy Knisley's memoir of how childbirth almost killed her, but it is also a well-researched call-to-action that we must do better for women in this country. Pregnant women aren't just vessels to hold growing humans. Their health and wellness matters just as much as that of the child. And for some reason, not just our culture, but our healthcare system seems to have completely forgotten that.

Truman by Jean Reidy, illustrated by Lucy Ruth Cummins
When Sarah leaves for her first day of school, Truman the Turtle waits impatiently for her to return, but when she doesn’t come back as soon as he’d like, he goes on a quest to find her. But he’s a tortoise. So you can probably already guess that he doesn’t get very far very quickly. The writing in this book is lovely and the story tugs at your heartstrings. I’ve never had any desire to have a pet turtle until reading this book.

The Sloth Who Slowed Down by Margaret Wild, illustrated by Vivienne To
For the speediest family in the world, a pet sloth is just the thing to help them slow down and enjoy life.

People Don't Bite People by Lisa Wheeler, illustrated by Molly Idle
Well who knew there was a niche for picture books that deal with kids who bite? You can’t get much cuter than Lisa Wheeler’s rhyming verse and Molly Idle’s soft yet colorful illustrations.

Currently reading:

First We Make the Beast Beautiful: A New Story About Anxiety by Sarah Wilson

Currently reading with my ears:

Heretics Anonymous by Katie Henry