Yesterday, I made my annual pilgrimage to the Scholastic Warehouse Sale. Armed with a listing of my newly reorganized Leveled Library inventory, I forced myself away from the picture books and materials more suitable to second grade independent readers in order to focus on increasing nonfiction texts. 20 year old buying habits are not easy to break.
Although the sale was not as big of a bargain as I’ve experienced previously (economics?), I still walked away with some nice reads for my third graders — lots of N, O, and P texts — in the nonfiction genres. Sometimes there is a lot of flotsam in the materials Scholastic puts out, and the warehouse sale does involve quite a bit of sifting through, but that being said, getting books at 25 to 50% off list certainly is a big deal when adding to a class library with personal funds.
And I bought myself a book or two for read-alouds. If you’ve never read Bats At The Beach by Brian Lies, I highly recommend it. I first discovered this book on NPR’s Weekend Edition with Scot Simon. Scot was reading this book with Daniel Pinkwater (who doesn’t love Guys In Space?) — it was so engaging that I bought it right off. And it has been a well-loved read aloud by my students ever since. Well, on this trip to the warehouse I discovered Brian Lies newest edition, Bats at the Library. Equally enjoyable — and we premiered this book during our read aloud this afternoon!
This morning, we spent more time on the library’s organization. Under the impression that the students were putting books back in their proper bins, I was shocked to find that over 20 had carelessly been thrown in any available bin. Regie Routman speaks to us about the gradual release of responsibility — in this instance, I must have not be gradual enough. So the minilesson I had planned during Literacy Studio turned in to a shared practice of how to put books away. Will this be the last time? I doubt it.