Shel Silverstein is a staple in 5th grade. Many years ago, while teaching 5th grade, I received Light in the Attic for my birthday. I brought it and Where the Sidewalk Ends, its companion, in to class where I shared it with small groups. I let them find their favorite funny pictures and accompanying poems and mark them with bookmarks they had designed themselves. I read a few favorites aloud in class, showing the drawings on the video camera. We did this in the few minutes before lunch or after PE for a “settle down” effect.
To integrate poetry with a grammar lesson later, students were asked to supply a noun for each blank in Richard Armor’s poem, “Money.” Then we compared our answers with the original which follows:
View original post 149 more words
I was sure I had read this book back in 1969 when it was first published; in fact, I told someone I had. This was not true. I have read so many things about it, that I thought I’d read it. Kurt Vonnegut’s semi-autobiographical, satirical novel deals with time travel and experiences during WWII. It is strange, but strangely appealing.
Billy Pilgrim, the protagonist is not an appealing person. In his PSTD and mental state, he thinks and recalls vividly that he had been abducted by the Tralfmadorians, beings from another planet. Pilgrim’s life journey, reflective of Pilgrim’s Progress, journeys through life and through time and recounts his experiences to the reader. Some are quite believable, like living through the bombing of Dresden, others are not. Seeing a great many deaths of both friends and enemies and relatives, Billy Pilgrim accepts the philosophy of, “so it goes.” He applies this…
View original post 51 more words
Recently I blogged giving some of my favorite quotes about books. Here are a few more I didn’t have room for:
“There are worse things than burning books; one of them is not reading them.” Poet Joseph Bradsky
“A classic is a book people have heard of, but never read.” Mark Twain
“A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.” Italo Calvino
“The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who can not read.” Mark Twain
” A great book should leave you many experiences, and slightly exhausted. You should lead several lives while reading.” William Styron
A book that has caused me to muse on faith and its various manifestations for the past few weeks is Anne Lamott’s Traveling Mercies. Published in 1999 by this renowned essayist and novelist, it’s messages are still just as relevant as ever.
As one critic said, Lamott can be “…both reverent and irreverent in the same lifetime…sometimes in the same breath.” She gives the reader stories of her life and about her son, Sam, at an early age. It is “tough, personal, affectionate, wise, and very funny.” It covers from her troubled past through her enlightened life today. My favorite essay was from the “Fambly” section, titled “Mom”. In it Lamott writes, “In the photo (of her mother and herself) I am looking over at her with enormous gentleness because I sometimes feel this…But I was only feeling this about half the time that day. The rest of the time…
View original post 92 more words