All students and teachers in the Magrath Elementary School have access to OverDrive. This is a great way to read during the summer. Each student needs their Westwind email and student password. If you need help getting set up, come to the library before the 28th or ask your teacher. The link can be found on the MES website on the library page. Look for the yellow button.
All library books are due Wednesday, June 13th.
Summer is fast approaching, and students are looking forward to a break from school: swimming, camping, riding bikes, vacationing, and enjoying the sunshine. Unfortunately, reading is not on most children’s summer to-do list, and many parents don’t enforce summer reading. This can lead to what researchers call the “Summer Slide.”
Several major studies have shown that children who don’t read during the summer experience a measurable drop in reading and learning ability before school resumes in the fall.
According to Richard Allington of the University of Tennessee, “What we know is that children who do not read in the summer lose two to three months of reading development while kids who do read tend to gain a month of reading proficiency. This creates a three to four month gap every year. Every two or three years the kids who don’t read in the summer fall a year behind the kids who do.”
Researchers have also concluded that these losses are cumulative and can result in up to a two-year gap in reading ability between children who read in the summer and those who don’t. Schools also have to spend significant time in the fall catching up on what students have forgotten over the summer.
Children who read four or more books at their reading level over the summer perform substantially better in the fall than their peers who don’t read. It has been shown that children who read 10-20 books over the summer actually improve their reading skills.
People are reading less than ever, and after grade three, reading frequency begins to decrease and continues to decrease through the teenage years. Children who are encouraged to read over the summer will do better in school and learn to become lifelong readers.
Remember: Quantity beats quality. Don’t worry about making sure the children read “good” books, just make sure they are reading!
Summer Reading Ideas:
- Make sure children have access to books in the home and encourage them to read for 30 minutes a day.
- Take advantage of the school's OverDrive program to access ebooks and audio books.
- Instead of watching movies on long trips, listen to audio books. These are available through Overdrive and through the public library.
- Find a high interest book and read the first few chapters to them. Get the child interested so they want to finish it on their own.
- Allow children to choose their own reading material. They are more likely to read and benefit from a book of their choice than one that they are forced to read.
- Take part in the summer reading program provided by the public library.
- Get a public library card and take your children to the library weekly.
- Ask children about what they are reading and be ready to share what you are reading with them.
- Read the same books as your children so you can discuss them together.
- Let your children see you reading and read to your children.
- Tie the books your children read to summer outings. (e.g. If you go to the zoo, find a book about their favourite animals.)
Fill out the form below to submit your review for the Battle of the Books.
Jane Yolen is an author of children’s books, fantasy, and science fiction, including Owl Moon, The Devil’s Arithmetic, and How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight?
She is also a poet, a teacher of writing and literature, and a reviewer of children’s literature. She has been called the Hans Christian Andersen of America and the Aesop of the twentieth century.
Jane Yolen’s books and stories have won the Caldecott Medal, two Nebula Awards, two Christopher Medals, the World Fantasy Award, three Mythopoeic Fantasy Awards, the Golden Kite Award, the Jewish Book Award, the World Fantasy Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Association of Jewish Libraries Award among many others.
You have access to hundreds of titles 24/7 with our new digital library, OverDrive!
Use the link on our library webpage, sign in with your school email, enter your password (PowerSchool number) and you are in. If you want to be able to listen to audio books, or read on any device, anytime, anywhere, you will have to download the OverDrive App available here: https://app.overdrive.com
If you need help, ask your teacher or the librarians.
You can find OverDrive here.
Children, puppies, and books all together in one place! What a great combo!
Last week Mrs. Susan Roberts visited with the kindergarten students in the library. She kindly brought Forte and Rhapsody to entertain and help the students learn a bit about our "Paws to Read" program here at the school. The children learned that you have to practice a lot to get good at something, as well as some basics in caring for a dog. There were a lot of giggles as Forte performed! Thank you Mrs. Roberts!
Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley
Even though his awful Great-Aunt Gertrudis doesn’t approve, Micah believes in the stories his dying Grandpa Ephraim tells him of the magical Circus Mirandus: the invisible tiger guarding the gates, the beautiful flying birdwoman, and the magician more powerful than any other—the Man Who Bends Light. Finally, Grandpa Ephraim offers proof. The Circus is real. And the Lightbender owes Ephraim a miracle. With his friend Jenny Mendoza in tow, Micah sets out to find the Circus and the man he believes will save his grandfather.
The only problem is, the Lightbender doesn't want to keep his promise. And now it's up to Micah to get the miracle he came for.
Masterminds by Gordon Korman
Eli Frieden lives in the most boring town in the world: Serenity, New Mexico. Only thirty kids live in the idyllic town, where every lawn is perfectly manicured and everyone has a pool and a basketball hoop. Honesty and kindness are the backbone of the community. There is no crime in this utopia.
Eli has never left town…. Why would he ever want to? But everything changes the day he and his friend Randy bike to the edge of the city limits. Eli is suddenly struck with a paralyzing headache and collapses. Almost instantly, a crew of security—or “Purple People Eaters,” as the kids call them—descend via helicopter. Eli awakens in the hospital, and the next day, Randy and his family are gone.
As Eli convinces his friends Tori and Malik to help him investigate Randy’s disappearance, it becomes clear that nothing is as it seems in Serenity. As the clues mount to reveal a shocking discovery, the kids realize they can trust no one—least of all their own parents. So they hatch a plan for what could be the greatest breakout in history—but will they survive? And if they do, where do they go from there?
Last day on Mars by Kevin Emerson
It is Earth year 2213—but, of course, there is no Earth anymore. Not since it was burned to a cinder by the sun, which has mysteriously begun the process of going supernova. The human race has fled to Mars, but this was only a temporary solution while we prepare for a second trip: a one-hundred-fifty-year journey to a distant star, our best guess at where we might find a new home.
Liam Saunders-Chang is one of the last humans left on Mars. The son of two scientists who have been racing against time to create technology vital to humanity’s survival, Liam, along with his friend Phoebe, will be on the very last starliner to depart before Mars, like Earth before it, is destroyed.
Or so he thinks. Because before this day is over, Liam and Phoebe will make a series of profound discoveries about the nature of time and space, and find out that the human race is just one of many in our universe locked in a desperate struggle for survival.
Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
For Milo, everything’s a bore. When a tollbooth mysteriously appears in his room, he drives through only because he’s got nothing better to do. But on the other side, things seem different. Milo visits the Island of Conclusions (you get there by jumping), learns about time from a ticking watchdog named Tock, and even embarks on a quest to rescue Rhyme and Reason! Somewhere along the way, Milo realizes something astonishing. Life is far from dull. In fact, it’s exciting beyond his wildest dreams. . . .
Mrs. Frisby and the rats of Nimh by Robert C. O'Brien
Mrs. Frisby, a widowed mouse with four small children, must move her family to their summer quarters immediately, or face almost certain death. But her youngest son, Timothy, lies ill with pneumonia and must not be moved. Fortunately, she encounters the rats of NIMH, an extraordinary breed of highly intelligent creatures, who come up with a brilliant solution to her dilemma.
Football Genius by Tim Green
Twelve-year-old Troy White has a phenomenal gift: He can predict football plays before they even happen. Any position. Any player. Any team.
When Troy's single mom gets a job working for the Atlanta Falcons, Troy sees this as an opportunity to show what he can do. But first he has to get to the Falcons—and with tight security and a notoriously mean coach, even his mom's field passes aren't much help.
Then Troy and his best friends devise a plan to get the attention of star linebacker Seth Halloway. With Seth's playing and Troy's genius, the Falcons could be unstoppable if they'll only listen. But if he can’t convince Seth he’s telling the truth, the Falcons’ championship and his mom’s job are at risk.
My Diary From the Edge of the World by Jodi Lynn Anderson
Spirited, restless Gracie Lockwood has lived in Cliffden, Maine, her whole life. She’s a typical girl in an atypical world: one where sasquatches helped to win the Civil War, where dragons glide over Route 1 on their way south for the winter (sometimes burning down a T.J. Maxx or an Applebee’s along the way), where giants hide in caves near LA and mermaids hunt along the beaches, and where Dark Clouds come for people when they die.
To Gracie it’s all pretty ho-hum…until a Cloud comes looking for her little brother Sam, turning her small-town life upside down. Determined to protect Sam against all odds, her parents pack the family into a used Winnebago and set out on an epic search for a safe place that most people say doesn’t exist: The Extraordinary World. It’s rumored to lie at the ends of the earth, and no one has ever made it there and lived to tell the tale. To reach it, the Lockwoods will have to learn to believe in each other—and to trust that the world holds more possibilities than they’ve ever imagined.
The Word Collector by Peter H. Reynolds
Some people collect stamps.
Some people collect coins.
Some people collect art.
Jerome collected words . . .
In this extraordinary new tale from Peter H. Reynolds, Jerome discovers the magic of the words all around him -- short and sweet words, two-syllable treats, and multisyllable words that sound like little songs. Words that connect, transform, and empower.
From the creator of The Dot and Happy Dreamer comes a celebration of finding your own words -- and the impact you can have when you share them with the world.
We're All Wonders by R. J. Palacio
Wonder is the unforgettable story of August Pullman, an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face. With over 5 million copies sold, Wonder is a true modern classic, a life-changing read, and has inspired kindness and acceptance in countless readers. Now younger readers can discover the Wonder message with this gorgeous picture book, starring Auggie and his dog Daisy on an original adventure, written and illustrated by R.J. Palacio.
With spare, powerful text and richly-imagined illustrations, We're All Wonders shows readers what it's like to live in Auggie's world - a world in which he feels like any other kid, but he's not always seen that way.
We're All Wonders taps into every child's longing to belong, and to be seen for who they truly are. It's the perfect way for families and teachers to talk about empathy, difference and kindness with young children.
Speaking Our Truth: a Journey of Reconciliation by Monique Gray Smith
Canada's relationship with its Indigenous people has suffered as a result of both the residential school system and the lack of understanding of the historical and current impact of those schools. Healing and repairing that relationship requires education, awareness and increased understanding of the legacy and the impacts still being felt by survivors and their families. Guided by acclaimed Indigenous author Monique Gray Smith, readers will learn about the lives of Survivors and listen to allies who are putting the findings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission into action.
For the months of April and May you can take part in the Battle of the Books! MES Staff have recommended books for students to read. Div I students will complete a review on paper (forms are available in the library.) Div II students will complete an online review here. Each review will act as an entry for weekly draws as well as for the final draw.
Students can see the recommended books on the bulletin board displays at school, in the library, or here:
Once Upon an Alphabet
The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader
The Sisters Grimm
The Wednesday Wars
Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea
Harry Potter: A Magical Journey
What Do You Do With an Idea?
A Child of Books
Love that Dog
The World From Up School
Because of Mr. Terupt
The Darkest Dark
If the World Were ad Village
What Do You Do With an Idea?
Because of Mr. Terupt
The Wolf the Duck & the Mouse
Ms. Bixby’s Last Day
I Need My Monster
There’s a Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom
What Do You Do With a Tail Like That?
George and Martha
Pusheen the Cat
Black and White
Mrs. Miller Gr 1
Nate the Great
Owen and Mzee
Mrs. Miller Gr 2
Duck on a Tractor
The Mouse and the Motorcycle
Who Would Win
Where the Red Fern Grows
The Book With No Words
Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood
The Hand of Robin Squires
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers
Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea
Who Would Win
Trouble With Trolls
Ruins of Gorlan
Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type
Before John Was a Jazz Giant
It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger.
"Wild nights are my glory," the unearthly stranger told them. "I just got caught in a downdraft and blown off course. Let me be on my way. Speaking of way, by the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract".
Meg's father had been experimenting with this fifth dimension of time travel when he mysteriously disappeared. Now the time has come for Meg, her friend Calvin, and Charles Wallace to rescue him. But can they outwit the forces of evil they will encounter on their heart-stopping journey through space?
We just wrapped up another successful book fair. Thanks to all who attended and supported the library. We'd also like to thank Mrs. Barbara Davies and Mrs. Susan Roberts (along with Forte) for graciously accepting the invitation to be storytellers for our family event. We appreciate our amazing volunteers and Mrs. Chelsie Wilde for organizing things for us.
Congratulations to the 8 winners of the Winter Reading Challenge. We hope you are enjoying the books you chose from the Book Fair!
Jorja Thomson won the family draw, so she and her teacher, Mrs. Kinisky each got to choose $25 in free books!
Hadley Zaugg won the guessing contest!
Hope you all enjoyed our "Paws for Reading" Book Fair!
Today is the last day of the book fair. We will be open until 1:00 p.m.
New York Times best selling author Shannon Hale started writing books at age ten and never stopped, eventually earning an MFA in Creative Writing. After nineteen years of writing and dozens of rejections, she published The Goose Girl, the first book in her award-winning Books of Bayern series.Book of a Thousand Days, a standalone novel for young readers, is a Cybils award winner. Princess Academy won a Newbery Honor and is followed by best seller Palace of Stone and upcoming The Forgotten Sisters. Her Ever After High books have been runaway bestsellers.
Her books for the adult crowd are Austenland (now a major motion picture), Midnight in Austenland, and The Actor and the Housewife. With her husband Dean Hale, Shannon wrote two graphic novels: Rapunzel's Revenge andCalamity Jack, and illustrated chapter book The Princess in Black. Shannon's books have been translated into many languages and studied in classrooms from elementary schools to universities. She spends her days as a stay-at-home mom to four young children near Salt Lake City, Utah.
Visit Shannon Hale's website here.
Our Spring Book Fair runs March 14th-16th and it is going to be so Doggone good!
We are inviting all to our first Family Night, "Paws to Read", Thursday, March 15 from 6:00-8:00.
Please COME, SIT, STAY and READ a great tale with your family when you come to peruse the Book Fair!
We are so excited to have storytellers, Barbara Davies, and Susan Roberts (along with her dog, Forte), to entertain from 6:00 to 6:30 and again from 7:00 to 7:30.
It's a casual open-house format that we hope you will take time to enjoy! Of course you are welcome to visit the book fair during school hours if that's more convenient for you. We will be open:
If you would like to volunteer for a couple of hours, just call the MES office, we'd be happy to accept your help.
Princess Cora and the Crocodile by Laura Amy Schlitz
A Newbery Medalist and a Caldecott Medalist join forces to give an overscheduled princess a day off and a wicked crocodile a day "on."
Princess Cora is sick of boring lessons. She's sick of running in circles around the dungeon gym. She's sick, sick, sick of taking three baths a day. And her parents won't let her have a dog. But when she writes to her fairy godmother for help, she doesn't expect help to come in the form of a crocodile, a crocodile who does not behave properly.
Who Will Plant a Tree? by Jerry Pallotta
From the apple seeds stuck to the fur of a bear to the pine seed carried by an army of ants, Mother Nature is given a hand in dispersing seeds.
The Skeleton Tree by Iain Lawrence
Less than 48 hours after twelve-year-old Chris casts off on a trip to sail down the Alaskan coast with his uncle, their boat sinks. The only survivors are Chris and a boy named Frank, who hates Chris immediately. Chris and Frank have no radio, no flares, no food. Suddenly, they've got to find a way to forage, fish and scavenge supplies from the shore. Chris likes the company of a curious friendly raven more than he likes the prickly Frank. But the boys have to get along if they want to survive.
Because as the days get colder, and the salmon migration ends, survival will take more than sheer force of will. There in the wilderness of Kodiak, they discover a bond they didn't expect, and through it, the compassion and teamwork that might truly be the path to rescue.
Connect the Stars by Marisa de los Santos
From Saving Lucas Biggs authors Marisa de los Santos and David Teague comes another heartwarming middle grade adventure about two misfits who discover the importance of just being themselves.
When thirteen-year-olds Aaron and Audrey meet at a wilderness camp in the desert, they think their quirks are enough to prevent them from ever having friends. But as they trek through the challenging and unforgiving landscape, they learn that they each have what it takes to make the other whole.
Luminous and clever, Connect the Stars has Marisa de los Santos and David Teague’s trademark beautiful prose, delicate humor, swooping emotions, and keen middle grade friendships. This novel takes on the hefty topics of the day—bullying, understanding where you fit in, and learning to live with physical and mental challenges—all in a joyous adventure kids will love!
The Wolf, the Duck, and the Mouse by Mac Barnett
This is a story about a mouse and a duck who get swallowed by a wolf.
Early one morning a mouse met a wolf
and was quickly gobbled up.
When a woeful mouse is swallowed by a wolf, he quickly learns he is not alone: a duck has already set up digs, and, boy, has that duck got it figured out! Turns out it’s pretty nice in there, with delicious food and elegant table settings, courtesy of the wolf’s unchecked gluttony. And there’s something even better: no more fear of being eaten by a wolf! In fact, life is pretty good, until a hunter shows up. . . . With a nod to traditional fables and a wink to the reader, the award-winning Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen offer a tale of cooperation and creative cuisine that is sure to go down easy.
If you liked The Ethan I was Before by Ali Standish then you might like...
Ms. Bixby's Last Day by John David Anderson
Everyone knows there are different kinds of teachers. The good ones. The not-so-good ones. The boring ones, the mean ones, the ones who try too hard. The ones you’ll never remember, and the ones you want to forget. But Ms. Bixby is none of these. She’s the sort of teacher who makes you feel like the indignity of school is worthwhile. Who makes the idea of growing up less terrifying. Who you never want to disappoint. What Ms. Bixby is, is one of a kind.
Topher, Brand, and Steve know this better than anyone. And so when Ms. Bixby unexpectedly announces that she is very sick and won’t be able to finish the school year, they come up with a plan. Through the three very different stories they tell, we begin to understand just what Ms. Bixby means to Topher, Brand, and Steve—and what they are willing to go to such great lengths to tell her.
Sparrow Road by Sheila O'Connor
It's the summer before seventh grade, and twelve-year- old Raine O'Rourke's mother suddenly takes a job hours from home at mysterious Sparrow Road – a creepy, dilapidated mansion that houses an eccentric group of artists. As Raine tries to make sense of her new surroundings, she forges friendships with a cast of quirky characters including the outrageous and funky Josie.
Together, Raine and Josie decide to solve the mysteries of Sparrow Road – from its haunting history as an orphanage to the secrets of its silent, brooding owner, Viktor. But it's an unexpected secret from Raine's own life that changes her forever.
Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt
Sylvie and Jules.
Jules and Sylvie.
Jules adores her older-by-one-year sister, Sylvie.
Sylvie: beautiful like their mother.
Sylvie: supreme maker of tiny snow families.
Sylvie: faster than fast.
Into thin air, Sylvie goes missing, and as Jules stumbles in grief, a fox cub is born. A shadow fox, spirit and animal in one. From the minute the cub opens her eyes, she senses something very wrong. Someone—Jules.
Jules: steadfast like their father.
Jules: supreme maker of tiny snow foxes.
Jules: collector of rocks.
Who is this Jules? Who is this Sylvie she cries out for? And why does the air still prickle with something unsettled? As that dark unknown grows, the fates of the girl Jules and the fox cub, laced together with wishes and shadowy ties, are about to collide.
Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea
Features seven narrators, each with a unique story, and each with a different perspective on what makes their teacher so special.
It’s the start of fifth grade for seven kids at Snow Hill School. There’s . . . Jessica, the new girl, smart and perceptive, who’s having a hard time fitting in; Alexia, a bully, your friend one second, your enemy the next; Peter, class prankster and troublemaker; Luke, the brain; Danielle, who never stands up for herself; shy Anna, whose home situation makes her an outcast; and Jeffrey, who hates school.
Only Mr. Terupt, their new and energetic teacher, seems to know how to deal with them all. He makes the classroom a fun place, even if he doesn’t let them get away with much . . . until the snowy winter day when an accident changes everything—and everyone.
Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eager
While her friends are spending their summers having pool parties and sleepovers, twelve-year-old Carolina — Carol — is spending hers in the middle of the New Mexico desert, helping her parents move the grandfather she’s never met into a home for people with dementia. At first, Carol avoids prickly Grandpa Serge. But as the summer wears on and the heat bears down, Carol finds herself drawn to him, fascinated by the crazy stories he tells her about a healing tree, a green-glass lake, and the bees that will bring back the rain and end a hundred years of drought. As the thin line between magic and reality starts to blur, Carol must decide for herself what is possible — and what it means to be true to her roots. Readers who dream that there’s something more out there will be enchanted by this captivating novel of family, renewal, and discovering the wonder of the world.
David Wiesner is one of the best-loved and most highly acclaimed picture book creators in the world. His books have been translated into more than a dozen languages and have won numerous awards in the United States and abroad. Three of the picture books he both wrote and illustrated became instant classics when they won the prestigious Caldecott Medal: Tuesday in 1992, The Three Pigs in 2002, and Flotsam in 2007, making him only the second person in the award's long history to have won three times. He has also received three Caldecott Honors, for Free Fall, Sector 7, and Mr. Wuffles!.
Wiesner grew up in suburban New Jersey, known to his classmates as "the kid who could draw." He went on to become a student at the Rhode Island School of Design, where he was able to commit himself to the full-time study of art and to explore further his passion for visual storytelling. He soon discovered that picture books were the perfect vehicle for his work.
Wiesner generally spends several years creating each new book. Many versions are sketched and revised until the story line flows smoothly and each image works the way he wants it to. He creates three-dimensional models of objects he can't observe in real life, such as flying pigs and lizards standing upright, to add authenticity to his drawings.
David Wiesner lives with his family outside Philadelphia.
You can learn more about David Wiesner on HERE
Ethan had been many things. He was always ready for adventure and always willing to accept a dare, especially from his best friend, Kacey. But that was before. Before the accident that took Kacey from him. Before his family moved from Boston to the small town of Palm Knot, Georgia.
Palm Knot may be tiny, but it’s the home of possibility and second chances. It’s also home to Coralee, a girl with a big personality and even bigger stories. Coralee may be just the friend Ethan needs, except Ethan isn’t the only one with secrets. Coralee’s are catching up with her, and what she’s hiding might be putting both their lives at risk.
The challenge has been extended! Everyone who returns their completed form to the library by Friday, March 9th, will have their name entered for a chance to win a book from the March Book Fair! (10 Chances to win)Read More