A Review of 2012

As we are enjoying the last day of 2012, Melody and I are reunited here in Seoul.  A big thanks to all of our readers and especially our top commenters. We appreciate all of your support and we look forward to continuing our blog in 2013. Here’s a look back at our year!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 20,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 5 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Here a few of the highlights of 2012!

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A New Kind of Read Aloud

Hello Educators!

I apologize for the lack of posting (there I said it, now on to more fun stuff).

As some of you may know by now, my school does not have unlimited resources, so I have had to become more creative in certain areas. One of those areas concerns my lack of books. And since I live in Korea, there is only one or two used books stores (because I am always on a budget!) for getting books in English. And most of those books are… just not appropriate for my classroom, or too old.

Then, one day, I happened to stumble across this amazing website! They put books online for you to read with pictures and everything. A digital book for free? YES, PLEASE.

WE GIVE BOOKS (this is the website- check it out!)

All you have to do is create an account (for FREE) and click on what book you want to read. I have done this a couple of times in the past couple weeks and my students think it is awesome, and if you had a smartboard it could be even better.

Also, a HUGE BONUS is that for every book you read money is donated to organizations that provide books to children and schools that really need them. How cool is that? They mostly have books for children from ages 0-10 years-old.


A couple of the books we have read so far:



Do you know of any other websites with free online books? Please share them with us!

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Author Visit with Rukhsana Khan

Our school hosts various authors throughout the year,which is pretty amazing, considering we are all the way in Singapore! This year, we had an author visit from a well known children’s author, Rukhsana Khan. Her books include Big Red Lollipop, Muslim Child, and The Rose in My Carpet. Not only is she an amazing and accomplished author, but she was a captivating speaker! The room full of 5th grade kids were engaged, excited and laughed as they listened to her stories.

In one of our sessions with her, she shared her story about immigrating to Canada from Pakistan at a young age. She shared about her different struggles including being seriously bullied for being different in her school.   She shared with us her journey to becoming a writer and the funny stories along the way. She had the entire audience eagerly waiting to hear what happened next. (I don’t think I’ve ever met a writer who wasn’t an amazing story teller!)


Rukhsana also shared a few stories of teachers that made a strong positive impact on her life and encouraged her to write. One teacher had her keep a creative writing journal. She even brought in the journal and showed us the letter that the teacher wrote to her after an entry. One of the students asked her to read it aloud. She shared the positive feedback that the teacher wrote in her notebook calling her a poet.

Our words can impact our students positively or negatively. I was reminded of the power that I have as a teacher. I was reminded that I need to continue to tell my students that they are writers. Thank you Rukhsana for inspiring our students and even our teachers!


Also, I found out that our school hosts an annual children’s literature conference! How cool is that?! This year it will take place from Feb. 1-3rd. We will have the following authors presenting: Chris Crutcher, Kadir Nelson, Laura Vaccaro Seeger, and Deborah Wiles.  I can’t wait to meet and learn from them! Check out the website for more information on registration and the authors.