Monday, December 17, 2007

Holiday Greetings

I am feeling a bit of holiday spirit today, having finished all grades for this term, and thus turning my mind for the first time to thoughts of Christmas. I would like to add that the sentiment expressed certainly refers to inner peace and peace with our family and friends; but especially I mean it regarding this terrible war and the threats that make me fear for another unnecessary and disastrous altercation.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Reading Year!

Last week I posted in on LM_NET and offered to compile and share the list of books that were mentioned in the recent popular thread "What I am reading now." People posted in and told what books they were currently enjoying. The resulting list is quite a mix, since some people mentioned adult titles, many shared YA books, and some may be easier than that. Topics range from parenting to philosophy with lots of good fiction in the mix. I am pasting in the list below. I hope I got everything, but if I missed your offering or if anyone wants to make additions, this would be great! You could certainly do this as comments below. And once again...Happy Holidays!

Alexis, Sherman Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Anderson, Jodi May Bird Warrior Princess
Anderson, Laurie Halse Twisted
Buckhanon, Kalisha Upstate
Buckley-Archer, Linda Cutpurse
Chopra, Deepak Buddha, a Story of Enlightenment
Clare, Cassandra City of Bones Bk 1: The Mortal Instruments
Colbert, Stephen I am American and So Can You!
Cooper, Susan Dark is Rising
Coville, Bruce All books by him!
Coyne, Kevin Marching Home
Cross, Shauna Derby Girl
Ferris Underground
Gaiman, Neil/Charles Vess Stardust
Gilbert Eat, Pray, Love
Giles, Gail Right Behind You
Green, Tim Football Genius
Grisham, John Playing for Pizza
Gruen, Susan Water for Elephants
Hale, Shannon Book of a Thousand Days
Hosseini, Khaled Thousand Splendid Suns
Jinks, Catherine Evil Genius
King, Laurie The Moor
Kingsolver, Barbara Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
Levitin, Daniel This is Your Brain on Music: The Science of Human Obsession
Marr, Melissa Wicked Lovely
Maurer Beyond the Wall of Resistance
McCarthy, Cormac The Road
Patteau, Edith East
Paver, Michell Chronicles of Darkness
Perotta, Tom The Abstinence Teacher
Piccoult, Jodi Plain Truth
Pullman The Goldan Compass
Radish, Kris Elegant Gathering of White Snows
Senge The Fifth Discipline
Smith, Roland Peak
Stephenson, Neil Quicksilver
Thompson, Victoria Gaslight Mysteries
Vrettos, Adrienne Marie Skin
Westerfield Uglies series
Zafon, Carlos Ruiz Shadow of the Wind

Twilight Series: Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse

Penny from Heaven

Black Book of Secrets

The Alchemist: Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel

My Swordhand is Singing

Third and Long

Terror on the Tide

Peter and the Starcatchers/Peter and the Secret of Rundoon

Spiderwick Chronicles


The Day of Battle: The War in Sicily and Italy 1943-1944

Ina May's Guide ot Childbirth

Birthing from Within

The Birth Partner

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Wow the things you can find...

I have an assignment in my Internet for Librarians class that is designed to promote evaluation of websites. Students look for several sites on a given topic, both good, authoritative material and also BAD examples. One type they must supply is a site with bias. One student's topic was recycling. I wondered as I began to read...will she really find a site against recycling? Not a problem I realized! There are lots of sites out there trashing environmentalists (sorry about the bad pun). Anyway, this site is a great one:

My favorite quotation is this:
" The Bible clearly states that God has made the heavens, with all their host, and the earth, and all things that are in it, and the seas, and all that is in them, and He preserves them all. (Nehemiah 9:6) God himself preserves the earth (and the oceans and the atmosphere), not governments, not environmentalists, not anybody else."

Soooo we can do as we please! GOD IS GOING TO PRESERVE THE EARTH even if we continue along with our wasteful and damaging ways! Why don't I feel relieved after reading this news...

On another topic, here is an interesting article about Yahoo!Answers, which I suspect may be trusted by both students and teachers.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

More New-to-me Links and Facts!

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I love teaching and I ENJOY GRADING STUDENTS' WORK! This was even true back in the old days when I taught junior high kids, mostly reading and English. The key is to craft assignments that I know ahead of time I will enjoy grading. I can remember actually being very eager to read what students would write in response to certain assignments back then. It was fun to see their creativity emerge. So here I am at the end of a semester and finishing up grading for the term. I just got started today, and already am stopping to record something new to me, a blog I had not visited before, and really really like! So here goes with my list of new info as of today:
  • Blog with emphasis on librarianship and web 2.0...what's not to like about that? This blog is called LibraryCrunch ad is the work of Michael Casey, public librarian and web aficionado. If you look soon, there is a cool picture of Santa getting his caffeine fix at Starbucks. He sprinkles cool pics throughout his blog, another thing to like. And there are sound files too! Here is the address:

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Potpourri of Links--Again Learning from Students

Again I am grading...grading...and will be for the coming two weeks as the fall term (already???) comes to an end. Yesterday I started a posting with a GREAT link that I found while going over student work. I could have sworn I saved the entry but now cannot find it. Wonder where it went? I now cannot remember a thing about the link except that I wanted to be sure and share it. Anyway, I will STILL share things I glean from students' work starting with one so far today and then building from there.
  • Alan Lew--I somehow missed this leader in Web 2.0 instruction, but just added him to my Twitter list. His page for that venue is: and from there you can find his other pages.

  • TwitterLit! Wow I love this site and, while I had heard of it, had not visited until it was mentioned today by a student. Twice a day you get literary teasers, first lines from books plus links to Amazon if you are intrigued by the lines. There is also a site for kids! You can subscribe via RSS or have the teasers sent to your twitter. Fun site!

  • And guess what? While I was typing, I remembered the site I wanted to share from yesterday. It is a site for teaching kids about phishing, and I think will be helpful for users of any age who need to learn about this somewhat confusing term. The site is Anti-Phishing Phil, where Phil the fish teaches the term in a game format:

  • Excellent educational use of a wiki is demonstrated at this site, which has received a good deal of attention for its presence. It is maintained by a computer science teacher at Westwood Schools, GA: