Archive for October 2009

Emily’s fairy house

October 30, 2009

Emily, a second grader in Mrs. Lee’s class and a real fairy lover, has been building fairy houses at her house. She recently took home Fairy Houses and Beyond by Tracy Kane, which gave her some inspiration. “All the boys thinks it’s a fairy trap, but it’s not,” said Emily.  “The number one rule is you can’t use bricks or paper, because the fairies don’t like it. You can’t use anything that people made. So I only use twine and tacky glue and pine cones, rocks, leaves, sticks… The house I’m making is a fall house.”  She put leaves on the branches.  She built a ladder so the fairies can get up to the platform.  Here is the fairy house “under construction” in her house:



And here is the house in its habitat, Emily’s front yard:


Notice the shells in the pathway.  The shells came from Bar Harbor, and were a gift from her grandparents:


And here is a closeup of the second floor loft:


Finally, here is a picture of the house with the book that helped Emily and her family create it:


Emily says that making the fairy house was a lot of work but it was also fun.  She is going to check today to see if any fairies have moved into the house.  When I go by on my daily walk, I will look, too!

THIEVES AND KINGS graphic novels

October 29, 2009

This is a student post by Matt in Mrs. Morin’s 5th grade glass.

Thieves and Kings!

It’s a great graphic novel series if you’re looking for  fun and adventurous books that are thick, have lots of reading, and lots of graphics. My opinion is the details, the drawing, the texture, the whole book, the author, and  the illustrator are brilliant !! The characters tell the story so well. This is about a boy named Rubel, a girl named Heath, a King, a dark witch, and lots of other characters; even an imp that helps Rubel in his journey.   In book one, Rubel was looking for love.  In book two, he got lost in a dream and has to help the witch to get out. Will he get out? You have to read the books. Book three just came out in Mrs. Raymond’s library.  I was the first one to read it.  In fact I’m still reading it so please read books 1 and 2 and then you can have book 3 when I’m done with it.


Heath, drawn by Matt, FREE HAND, NOT TRACED!!


Where the wild things are: the movie

October 27, 2009


I went to see Where the Wild Things Are last night.  I usually don’t like movies that come from classic children’s books, because kids usually don’t want to read the book anymore after they’ve seen the movie.  Also, the story is often changed in ways that I don’t like.   But I knew that this film was ADAPTED from the book, and obviously things were going to have to be added because otherwise it would have lasted about 4 minutes!  I did not expect an exact copy of the book, but rather a fuller explanation of what was going on in Max’s head that night he got angry and yelled at his mother, and in that respect I found the movie true to the essence of the book.  It certainly explained Max’s imaginary world in a very creative and sometimes scary way.

I loved the monster costumes.  They were absolutely right in my opinion, and they often made me laugh. The monsters just looked so weird and funny walking on the beautiful beach or sand dune.   The setting was beautiful:  I believe it was filmed in Australia, and visually it was stunning.

Overall I felt that it was very interesting and it really made me think about childhood and creativity and imagination.  I also agree with other reviews I have read that it is really more for adults.  It is not marketed as a movie for children, and it felt  sad and dark with an awful lot of talk about relationships, which probably is not what school-age children or families with young children expect from a movie based on a children’s book.

Have you seen it?  What did you think?  I would love to know what CPS students, teachers, and parents thought of this movie!

Another student story!

October 23, 2009

Here is another story from Mrs. Clarke’s class.  This one is by Autumn, a 2nd grader.

A New Land

Written and Illustrated by Autumn


I went to Candy Land with my friend, Sammy.  I saw a lollipop and we slid into the Chocolate Fudge River on it.  Sammy and I drank a little bit of the river and then got out.

After that, Sammy and I found a gumball.  We rolled on it and then chewed through it.  Then, we saw a candy raft.  We got on it.


After that,  Sammy said, “Look at that big ice cream!  We can dive in it and then eat some!”  That is what we did!

Behind the ice cream there was a chocolate mountain with whip cream and a cherry.  We slid on our bellies and ate some of the chocolate mountain.


Soon we went to bed in a Jell-O cake.  In the middle of the night we saw some goblins and a little dinosaur made out of sugar.


The goblins took us back to Sammy’s house in a chocolate elevator!  Sammy and I went to bed in her room.


In the morning, we went back to Candy Land again!  We traveled to the gingerbread homes where we stuffed candy from the roofs into our mouths.

After that, Sammy and I went home for a long time.  But, we did not tell anyone about our adventures!

Student stories!

October 22, 2009

Mrs. Clarke came to me yesterday, very excited, wanting to share with me some stories that her students had written.  We decided to post them on this blog so everyone could see the amazing work that was being done by these talented students.  The first story will be a second grader’s…

The Rainbow Unicorn

Written and illustrated by Tabby



Once upon a time I was walking.  I saw a unicorn.  The unicorn came down from the sky.  It was flying.  It had wings.

I wanted to keep it.  So I did and I loved the unicorn so much and the unicorn loved me, too.

The unicorn had a big horn.  I named it Horny because Horny had a big horn.  Horny the Unicorn had wings, too.  And…….

Me and my unicorn slept together.  We played together.  I took a ride on Horny the Unicorn.


I had so much fun with Horny and Horny had so much fun with me, too.  I said, “Horny, I love you.”


And here is a story by Kylee  in Grade 4.

Before I go to soccer……

Written and Illustrated by Kylee


Before I go to soccer on Saturdays, I target practice.  I shoot a milk carton.  I shoot it with my beebee gun.  I have a lot of fun.

I target practice with my mom.  She is my instructor.  It is awesome!

I target practice because I think it is cool.  I have my own gun.  It is brown and has a deer on it.  My gun is not loud.  I also have a gun at my dad’s house.  I get to shoot with my dad, too.  I don’t think it’s scary.

Mom says that I am going to hunt with her when I am ten.  I have to be ten years old to hunt with my mom because it is the law.  I think it is cool that I will get to hunt for deer, moose, birds and rabbits.  I will hunt for these animals but I will not eat them all.  My dad will eat the deer and moose.  The rabbit skins will hang in my room if I shoot any.  I can’t wait to hunt because I love to shoot guns!

When I shoot, I don’t wear earplugs or eye protection.  Target practicing with my mom is exciting and interesting!  Being with my mom is sweet!  I love to shoot and I love my mom!


The Giants and the Joneses by Julia Donaldson

October 20, 2009

url-2Here is a book by a British children’s book author that combines elements of Jack and the Beanstalk, The BFG by Roald Dahl, The Borrowers by Mary Norton, and “The Littles” series by Peterson. It even had echoes of the movie (I know! I’m not supposed to talk about “the ‘m word'”, but sometimes I do watch movies) “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” which you students maybe have never even heard of….ANYWAY, in this book three siblings (who don’t get along very well) Colette, Stephen and Poppy get captured by a giant girl, Jumbeelia, who plants a beanstalk from way up there in “giant land” because her favorite story is Jack and the Beanstalk, and she climbs DOWN to see if she can find some “iggly plops” ( giant language for “little humans”). One of the fun things about this book is the invented language of the giants. There is a glossary at the back of the book but you can usually figure out what they’re saying from the context. How do you think the three human children will make it up there in their new surroundings? If you think Brian had survival issues in Hatchet, wait till you see the dangerous things these three children have to deal with when Jumbeelia’s evil brother gets ahold of them! Check it out if you are a fan of adventurous, fast-paced, suspenseful fantasies.

Announcing the first “Guest Post”

October 16, 2009

We have some excellent readers at Crescent Park School. From time to time I will feature student book reviews on this blog. Today for your reading pleasure I feature this blog’s first guest post, submitted by Matthew, one of the stars of my Fifth Grade Literacy Group.

url-1The Lost Years of Merlin is a great book. The author does a good job at keeping you on the edge of your seat. It is about the great wizard Merlin when he was a kid. He has lost his memory of being a baby on a legendary isle called Fincyara. Since his mom was a human and Merlin was born on Fincyara then Merlin was cursed from the island forever. But his mother ran away from all the people on Fincyara and washed up on the shores of Gylead. There Merlin starts to learn about his powers and how dangerous they become to him. Read this amazing thriller. This is part of the Merlin series.