Friday, November 8, 2013

Holy Bagumba! Our First Mock Newbery Book.

Mock Newbery groups are forming this month at Prairie Creek Intermediate.

What is a Mock Newbery group? These groups will follow the procedures of the actual Newbery committee. We will read a set of great books published this year, use a version of the official criteria to evaluate these titles, and vote to decide the books we think should win.  In January we'll compare our results to the official Newbery winning books.

Our first title for consideration is Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures by Kate DiCamillo.

More titles coming soon.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Book Fair needs you!

The next Scholastic Book Fair is coming in November and we are looking for a Student Crew. What does the Student Crew do? Watch this video for details.
Pick up a volunteer form in the library.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Animation Club

Do you have a story idea?  Would you like to turn that idea into a short animated movie?

Mr. Cox and Ms. Kline are offering the Creek Animation Club for all interested students.  We held information sessions this week. If you missed these meeting don't worry!  Below are the videos we showed about each medium.

Club members have two options for creating their stories.

Stop Motion Animation


Sign up for the club here

The first creative meetings are scheduled!

5th grade - Wednesday, Sept. 11th during recess and lunch.

6th grade - Monday, Sept. 16th during recess and lunch.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Visitng Mrs. Anderson's class

I am learning how to use Vine. This one is way too fast. Enjoy the book tour of Mrs. Anderson's 6th grade class.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Runaway gami

The fantastic 6th graders in Mrs. Becicka's class are already creating cool stuff. Here is a Gami McKenzie and Shelby made about the book Runaway.


Thursday, August 22, 2013


To kick off the new school year we've been viewing this video in our Library & Technology class.

We've had amazing discussions.  Do I see a future group of coders in our building?  Absolutely!

We have plans to use Scratch and I can see us relying on Codeacademy too.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Ready to Vote?

The Children's Book Week display has been nearly empty for several weeks.  

 I 'm guessing this means we have lots of students who have some opinions to share about the nominees.  Read and View more about them on Teaching Books.

VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE (all votes are due by Thursday, May 9th).

Stolen Children

      Stolen Children is one of my favorite books I have read! Stolen Children is exciting, humorous, dangerous, and much much more!  But one of my favorite parts was how is focused so much on abduction.  This book showed a real life scene that could happen at any given moment.  Stolen Children by Peg Kehert  is definitely one book you should put on your must read list!
~Nicole S

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Thirteenth Princess

Did you like this book?
Yes, I really liked this book. It was a fantastic fantasy book because it always urged me to read on. The book was about a girl named Zita. She was the king’s thirteenth princess. After Zita was born her mom died and the king always thought it was Zita's fault. She couldn't live with her sisters and her father up in the bed chamber. Zita had to live down stairs under the palace with the servants. Zita was always a servant. But soon her sisters start to get REALLY sick and Zita thinks it is magic. Every night the princesses wake up and go to a lake in a faraway kingdom where they dance till dawn. But this is killing the sisters. Will Zita be able to save her sisters and get back her fathers love? Read to find out!

~Emily B.

This book review is by Emily B. in Mrs. Johnson's homeroom.  Do you want to review books for the library blog?  Share your review as a google document with Mr. Cox.

Book Trailer from Harper Collins Publishers

An interview with the Diane Zahler.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

What Are Your Reading Today? It's not a secret

I dropped by Mrs Kay's literacy class (Mrs. Callahan's homeroom) today and talked books with Haley and Luka.

Paxton and Cameron stopped by too.

The Book Covers.

Preview and Review

Have you visited the newest attraction in the library? Come by the Preview and Review shelf to look at books being published later this spring and summer. After you read these preview copies write a review for fellow students and the publishers. (See Mrs. Johnson or Mr. Cox for forms).

Monday, April 22, 2013

Sailing the Unknown

Would you dare to sail a ship where no one had gone before? In 1768 an eleven year old boy did with a world famous explorer.

When I say "explorer" what names come to your mind?  How about  James Cook?  He traveled all over the globe in the 1700s - an interactive map will show you the routes.  Many times he and his crew didn't know what they would find or the best route to take.

The library has a new picture book about his adventures from 1768 to 1771. We learn more about the adventures aboard the Endeavor through the journal entries of the youngest crew member, eleven year old Nicholas Young.  The author, Michael J. Rosen, used research to imagine the perspective Nicholas would have on the real historical events the crew encountered.   All kinds of activities and information are available here:

 Take a preview here (click on the images to look inside the book).   The illustrator, Maria Pritelli, paints the scenes as well as text features (maps, cross sections).


Just in case you haven't seen it here is a short video about the most common text features from a social studies unit.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Read Everything and Decide

Children's Book Week is coming up in May.
Check out the newest display of finalists for the Children's Choice Book Awards (this is like the national version of our Iowa Children's Choice Award.)

Read as many of these as possible and vote by May 9th.

Here is the link to vote:


Monday, March 4, 2013

The Willoughbys

My weekend reading included The Willoughbys by Lois Lowry.

Have you read lots of stories with orphans?  Do you have a sarcastic (maybe even slightly dark) sense of humor?  This books has lots to offer you!  Lois Lowry makes fun of many of the traditional plots found in classic orphan stories.  The four Willoughby children dislike their parents.  The parents don't much love their kids. Everyone is plotting to be rid of each other. I guarantee you'll laugh - at least twice.

What did you read this weekend?

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

World Read Aloud Day plans coming together

Plans are coming together for our first celebration of World Read Aloud Day at Prairie Creek. Here is what we have on the agenda so far:

Monday, February 25, 2013

It's Monday - What Are You Reading?

What I read last week

GINGERSNAP by Patricia Reilly Giff
Historical Fiction - World War II

by Michael Escoffier
Illustrated by Kris Di Giacomo

What I am reading this week






Thursday, February 21, 2013

A Gateway to Ethical Use - Google Image Advanced Search

Ethical use of information is an important learning standard for 6th graders.  Today we're using their interest in visual culture (like dogs playing pianos) to introduce the concept of copyright licenses.  Using Google Image Advanced Search they looked for images with licenses that allow for sharing and modification.  With this user friendly image downloaded they begin experimenting with the features in the Aviary Photo Editor app (currently free in Edmodo).  Coming soon our first Prairie Creek Photo Contest.


Friday, February 15, 2013

Are you "appy"

We're working on making personal devices learning tools.  Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is one way we are encouraging students to use digital tools to set personal learning goals.

Our primary platform for the library & tech encore class is Edmodo.

A new addition to our research tool box is Brain Pop. (Big thank you to the Prairie School Foundation for funding our building-wide subscription to this resource for the 2013 calendar year)

Destiny Quest app is the student gateway to our library catalog.

Building e-book lists

Even on school store duty the incredible Ms. Johnson (tireless library associate) tends to the virtual library.
Pictured here she uses here new ipad mini to build e-book lists in the library catalog.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Mrs. Becicka class selections

For the 5th grade lunch book club Mrs. Becicka's a.m. class selected these books:

Can't wait to talk about these stories over lunch.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

5th Grade Book Clubs

The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg

Al Capone Does My Shirts 
Gennifer Choldenko introduces and shares some of the backstory to the book.

Bud, Not Buddy
reading of an excerpt by the author, Christopher Paul Curtis.

Surviving Brick Johnson

Interview with the author, Gary Paulsen, featuring this title.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

2013 Reading Goals

All students at Creek have set reading goals for this school year.  I need to set a goal for myself in 2013.    One idea is to read a book every day.  That would be 365 books by the end of the year!

So far I am on target (check out the 2013 Reading Challenge widget on the right).  This tool is how I will track my progress.

Many of the books I read will be chapter books but to stay on target I know it will take all formats.  The first day back to school will be busy so I am reading a new graphic novel we've received in the library.


How are all you students doing on your reading goal?

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Animals Welcome

 Maybe you like Peg Kehret's books?  Perhaps you are someone who really cares about animals?  The new memoir Animals Welcome might be of interest to you.  Here is a brief description from the library catalog: "Author Peg Kehret shares her experiences living on a small wildlife sanctuary and provides facts about a variety of animals."  I plan to read this new arrival soon (when Mrs. Johnson is finished).