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  1. Good Morning, dear hearts! Today is the start of week 16 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books Blogs - Judge a book by its cover: A few years back, a blogger friend of mine posed a challenge to pick a book based on its cover. The catch however was not to read the synopsis or reviews or anything else that would tell you what the book is about. Pick the book, blog what you think the book is about, then read it and find out if your supposition was correct. I've actually come across some very interesting books picking a book based on its cover. So yesterday I went on Amazon and looked at the new releases and chose books by authors I've never read and whose covers and titles interested me. And the hard part was not looking at the book description. Easier said than done especially when you are as nosy as I am. Scroll down 4 messages for the photos or Click over to 52 books, check out the book covers and then let me know which one you think I should read? (I tried copying and pasting the images, but it killed my entire post.) Which one intrigues or tickles your interest. I'll read the one that receives the most votes and let you know what I think the story is about and what it ended up really being about. Join in the fun. Go to the library, bookstore or online and pick a book based on its title or cover. 1Q84 Readalong - Last week began our readalong of Haruki Muakami's 1Q84. What do you think so far? What are you reading this week? Link to week 15
  2. Good Morning, my lovelies! Today is the start of week 15 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books blog - Latin American Poetry: April is National Poetry Month and highlighting the poetry of two Latin American writers - Pablo Nerudo and Gabriel Mistral, both who have won the Nobel Prize for Literature. Also North American poet, Octavio Paz from Mexico City, Mexico who was encouraged by Pablo Neruda to write poetry and won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1990. Check out NPR's Audiocast of "Does Poetry Still Matter? Yes Indeed" 1Q84 Readalong: Today begins our readalong of Haruki Murakami's 1Q84 What are you reading this week? Link to week 14
  3. Happy Sunday and Happy Easter to those who celebrate! Today is the start of week 14 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books Blog - New Book Releases and Readalong: Highlighted new books that caught my attentions - Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, Drunken Botanist, Wicked Plants and Manuscript Found in Accra. Yes I know, it's an odd assortment. Next week starts our readalong of 1Q84 by Murakami, a mind bending ode and chunkster to George Orwell's 1984. I stumbled upon Open Culture the other day and a post with audio including Samuel Beckett reading two poems from his novel Watts. Another new book which I just received an email about is The Selected Letters of Willa Cather which is being released April 2. With the end of march, comes the end of the first quarter of the year, (thanks for the reminder Shari) so it is a perfect time to do a progress check. How is everyone doing with the challenge and all the personal challengers you've set such as the 5/5/5, continental or mini challenges. What are you reading this week? Link to week 13
  4. It's our first year in Home Educating and I've done 2nd and K. My Kindergartener is reading pretty well. We did 100 Easy Lessons so now she just reads out loud to me her choice of library books daily. She did Handwriting Without Tears and followed that up with Kumon Book of Writing Words which she finished. I've ordered Kumon's Book of Simple Sentences but I think that's more beginning Grammar than handwriting. She's about half-way through Math-U-See Alpha. She does Science and History along side big brother where she dictates to me what she's learned and I write it out and she draws a picture of what she's dictated to me (about 3xweek). I just feel like she's breezing through everything and I don't know what to do next? It feels like 1st Language Lessons and Writing With Ease would be a bit premature for her at this point, she just doesn't quite seem ready for that level. What could do to keep her developing toward those materials to bridge what she's already completed? Thanks is advance.
  5. Happy Sunday, my dears! Today is the start of week 13 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books Blog - Chinua Achebe: On March 21st, Nigerian author Chinua Achebe, seen by many as the father of African literature, passed away at the age of 82. He is most well known for his novel Things Fall Apart, a book I've had on my wishlist and have been meaning to read for quite a while ever since I read Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. A few years back I took a film versus literature course in which one of the books we compared was Conrad's book with the movie Apocalypse Now. Included in the book were several essays including one written by Achebe called An Image of Africa: Racism in Conrad's Heart of Darkness. It was a reprisal of a lecture he had given in 1975 tackling the racism portrayed in the story. Achebe believed that not only were the ideas in the book racist, but reflected the author's personal beliefs. Having read Heart of Darkness I can totally understand his point of view and why I wanted to read Things Fall Apart. The book is now winging it way to me (thank you Amazon) and I'll probably be reading it sooner than later. Will I be rereading Heart of Darkness since it's been 3 or 4 years since I read it? I don't know - It is a short novella that packs a punch and stays with you for a very long time. In honor of Chinua Achebe, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is sometime this year read and compare Heart of Darkness with Things Fall Apart, then watch Apocalypse now. Check out his other books here. April readalong - still planning on 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami: We'll start April 7 which will give those reading Hopscotch time to finish and absorb before diving into this chunkster. Book news: Stumbled across this a bit late, but better late than never I always say. It is the 10th Anniversary of Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code and it is available for free in ebook format through the end of today, march 24. If you haven't read it yet, here's your chance. I read it twice and enjoyed it both times. Forget all the hoopla. Just like Harry Potter, it is fiction after all. What are you reading this week? Link to week 12
  6. I live overseas and lack access to a library. I use Sonlight for my reading but the readers are not enough for my boy since he loves to read. Thankfully, I have a Kindle for him but I have had to return books a few times already since my son said they were too violent or dark. He reads very well and prefers historical fiction books. Any book under 200 pages is usually too short for him. Does anyone have any recommendations for books that are on Kindle that would be good for my son? He is in the fourth grade.
  7. Dia duit ar maidin! Happy St. Patrick's day. Today is the start of week 12 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books Blog - Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter: Highlighting book # 7 and chapter one in the list of great fiction from SWB's Well Educated Mind. Coincidentally, this is also the anniversary of the book's publication 163 years ago on March 16, 1850. Hopscotch Readalong - It's two books in one. Read as you would normally read a book or follow the trail and hopscotch around. How are you doing so far? April readalong - still planning on 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami: We'll start April 7 which will give those reading Hopscotch time to finish and absorb before diving into this chunkster. What are you reading this week? Link to week 11
  8. Good morning, my dears! Today is the start of week 11 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books blog - Hugo Chavez: The post that almost wasn't. I was totally enthralled reading The Likeness this weekend and time got away from me. Before I knew it....more on the blog. *grin* The only thing I could think of since we are armchair traveling through South America is Hugo Chavez since he died this past week so highlighted 3 books about Chavez and Venezuela. Hopscotch Readalong - are you ready for a book adventure? It's two books in one. Read as you would normally read a book or follow the trail and hopscotch around. I'm going to follow his way and start with chapter 73. Did you all remember to see your clocks ahead an hour? What are you reading this week? Link to week 10
  9. Hi there! Ok, so I know that this is a question that has no right answer, because everyone's philosophy on reading is different and everyone's child is different. But I find myself freaking out over how not-far we are in OPGTR and how not proficient in reading dd is after half a year of K4, and I need someone to talk me down off the "I suck at this" ledge! :) My dd is nearly 5 and we've been doing K4 this year. We are just getting into the "beginning consonant blends" section of OPGTR. Dd usually does really well as long as we're going slow and she can sound out slowly, but she's still needing to sound out - only rarely looking at words and being able to read them without having to go "ffffffff...iiiiiiiiii....xxxxx. Fix!" Things she's seen often, like "cat" and "mom" and stuff like that, she can read without sounding out. Sight words like "the" too. I have tried to work with her on stringing all the sounds together without a space in between, but she still breaks them up. (I feel like I'm nagging if I keep pressing the issue.) I worry that i's starting to become a problem now that we're getting into longer words, because once in a while she will mentally reverse sounds or leave off the first sound. (i.e. "hhhhh...oooo....pppp. Op!") Sometimes she just guesses. Sometimes she accidentally starts with the letter on the right, then can't let it go and start from the left. (Like for "pat" - "ttttttt...." "Where do we start?" "ppppp...aaaaa...tttt. Tap!") I haven't had material for her to read that's exactly scintillating - we've mostly just been reading the practice sentences and short stories in OPGTR, and she finds them boring. (She actually groans most of the time when I bring out the book. Not a good sign.) I just ordered a couple of the reading books from AAR, so I'm hoping that will inject some fun and motivation into our tooth-pulling reading lessons. I guess my question and my worry is - are we doing ok? Are these just normal struggles? Are we at a "normal" place? I was an early, easy reader, and incremental progress is a hard concept to wrap my head around. I'm trying to get more comfortable with it, but then I worry that I'm getting too comfortable, KWIM? TY!
  10. My child is now 9 years old. Struggling reader and reading under "grade level." My kiddo refuses to read anything on her own, pick up a book and sit and read, read aloud without me right next to her, read a sign, read a package, refuses to READ anything. If she does read she will know some of the words, she may guess at some words, she may make up a word, or she will just get to a word and look at me as if awaiting for me to tell her the word. Reading has become a chore in our home. Its frustrating to all parties involved and I am stuck not knowing how to help her. We have continued with phonics, grammar, and now spelling and reading 1st and 2nd level books. She enjoys anything I read to her. We have tried by getting books she will enjoy and partner reading-this is what gets the most accomplished reading. I am at the point of thinking about pushing all subjects to the side and fully focusing on reading? But then will all of our other subjects suffer? Any advice anyone would give will be taken as helpful! - Mommy with a frustrated reader!
  11. Good morning, dear hearts! Today is the start of week 10 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books - Gadding about South America: If you've been doing the Continental Challenge and following along with me, the first couple months of armchair traveling has taken us down through Canada and across the Unites States. Now we are heading down through South America and see what there is to discover. If you don't know where to begin, check out the books I found based on setting at Traipse through South America (also listed on the blog). Wide Open Education lists the 20 Essential Works of Latin America Literature which includes Pablo Neruda, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Isabel Allende and Julio Cortazar. And to torture you some more, Becca of Lost in Books has been doing a fabulous Take me Away series highlighting books from different countries and has so far done Argentina, Brazil, Chili, and Peru, that will have you adding more books to your wishlist. Speaking of Julio Cortazar - are you ready for a challenging readalong? Stacia talked me into it so we going to tackle reading Hopscotch by Argentinian novelist Julio Cortazar and will begin March 10th. Synopsis: Horacio Oliveira is an Argentinian writer who lives in Paris with his mistress, La Maga, surrounded by a loose-knit circle of bohemian friends who call themselves "the Club." A child's death and La Maga's disappearance put an end to his life of empty pleasures and intellectual acrobatics, and prompt Oliveira to return to Buenos Aires, where he works by turns as a salesman, a keeper of a circus cat which can truly count, and an attendant in an insane asylum. Hopscotch is the dazzling, free-wheeling account of Oliveira's astonishing adventures. And by free-wheeling, they mean a stream of consciousness book in which you can read in chapter order or follow the random pattern set out by the author. Same as the title, you will be Hopscotching around. According to the Quarterly Conversation: The most remarked-on aspect of Hopscotch is its format: the book is split into 56 regular chapters and 99 “expendable†ones. Readers may read straight through the regular chapters (ignoring the expendable ones) or follow numbers left at the end of each chapter telling the reader which one to read next (eventually taking her through all but one of the chapters). A reading of the book in that way would lead the reader thus: Chapter 73 – 1 – 2 – 116 – 3 – 84 – 4 – 71 – 5 – 81 – 74 – 6 – 7- 8, and so on. - So be prepared to set aside all expectations, take your time, have a glass of wine or two (or your favorite beverage) and enjoy. I intend to. For those who aren't interested in Hopscotch, in April (dated to be determined) we will be doing a readalong of the chunkster IQ84 by Haruki Murakami. What are you reading this week? link to week 9
  12. Good morning, dear hearts! Today is the start of week 9 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books blog - Book News: 6 of the 9 movies nominated for the Oscars best picture are based on the written word. The movie Argo is based on on a article from Wired magazine and Juicy and Delicious was inspired by a one act play by Lucy Alibar. So be sure to check out the Oscars tonight and then read the books. In other bookish news CSPAN's The First Ladies of the United States has been published to go along with their television series: First Ladies: Influence and Image about the lives of the first ladies which will run for two seasons and begins weekly on Monday, February 25th. Check out NPR's Great Reads about the Silver Screen about past books which became movies Publisher Weekly's Best New Books for the Week of February 25 Last call for those who want to participate in the 52 books Amazon Wishlist. Please pm with link to your wishlist and name. Will be sharing with 52 bookers for the purposes of birthdays and just because gifts. What are you reading this week? Link to week 8
  13. I am looking for your favorite apps for phonics and reading:001_smile:
  14. Good morning, my lovelies! Today is the start of week 8 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books Blog - Jane Eyre: Highlighting book # 6 in SWB's Well Educated Mind list of fiction to read along with an excerpt of the first chapter. Publisher weekly book news: Most anticipated books for spring 2013 list includes a new crime novel by Stephen King Joyland and a new adult sci fi/fantasy novel by Neil Gaiman The Ocean at the End of the Lane. For the writers and sleuths in us check out - Mastermind: How to think Like Sherlock Holmes by Maria Konnikova What are you reading this week? Link to week 7
  15. Good morning, my lovelies! Today is the start of week 7 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. The link is below in my signature. 52 Books blog - Keeping the Feast: Highlighting Paula Butturini's memoir about how food played a role in her and her husband's life through multiple trauma's and helped them heal. Their story is at times difficult to read, yet shows a strength of character. I think a big part of their healing came from living in Italy itself. Paula found healing and solace in the daily routine of walking to the outdoor market in the piazza to pick out their food for the day, preparing and cooking their meals. Interspersed throughout the book, she shared stories about growing up, her parents, her mother's fight with depression and most of all, memories of family meals. Christmas and other holidays centered about the food, not the event. Since we aren't financially independent enough to travel the world, taste testing all the way, we'll be vicariously journeying and eating our way around the world through culinary memoirs. My challenge to you is to read a book about food - a chef's memoir, history of food, etc, And since we've been traveling through Canada during the Continental challenge, be sure to check out one of Canada's best well known chef's Michael Smith and try out some of his recipes and let us know how it turned out. I've also linked to a few other chef memoirs on 52 Books to get you started. What are you reading this week? Link to week 6
  16. Our daughter just started kindergarten. She is in an inclusion classroom b/c of a vision impairment. Most of the work they are doing now though I would think is not K level. She was in the same school last two years for part-time inclusion preschool. This fall they are beginning to sort by attributes. Following directions (color this thing yellow, the apples red). I don't even think they have started working on patterns yet. Recognizing letters. All of this she has done at least a year back in preschool. We are in a "good" school district, I am just trying to get a handle on whether for any reason they might be moving slower in the inclusion class. It is also only a 3 hour program in our district, and with specials every day. They also include a play period (which is good, except it's such a short program anyway). Our son did PS kindergarten but it was 5 years ago and another school, he was also reading a year before starting. DD is on target in all areas, and on DIBELS reading readiness they gave all kids -- she is just starting to recognize words. The inclusion class is good however in a smaller ratio and DD needs assistance with magnification etc. b/c of vision. If you are willing to share the kinds of beginning kindergarten work your child is doing, it would be helpful. Thanks! Amy
  17. ...do a reading program? I am looking at BJU Reading and I can see there are some things in the workbook that I may not think of to teach if we were just reading books. But are there enough concepts taught in the workbook to make the time to do them?? What do you see that we'd be missing by NOT doing a reading "program"? (looking at 4th grdade & up) Pam
  18. My 2nd grader is set to finish Book 8 in the Explode the Code series. We've used them for phonics practice/review. He enjoys the books a lot and is reading way above his 2nd grade level. I am curious what I should do after the last Explode the Code book. Should I start a vocabulary workbook? Is there anymore Phonics that we need to learn? Should we do a reading comprehension workbook? Looking for suggestions that are quick, fun, and easy to teach....similar to what Explode the Code was!!
  19. Okay, my 2.5-yo now needs roughly the same amount of sleep as my 7-year-old. Since my best, longest stretch of read-aloud time has been reading to Button after I've settled the tot, as a bedtime story, what to do? (the toddler doesn't take a nap) Please don't tell me to get up 30-45 min earlier with the tot. Or if you do, please send a hug along with the advice! :) Here's the current schedule for morning wake-up and PM going down: 7:00 AM -- boys allowed up. Button sleeps until 7:30 usually, Bot-bot's been getting up at 6 - 6:30 the last week or so. 8:00 AM -- everybody needs to be upstairs, dressed, &c. 8:30 - 9:30 -- we start school. ... 7:00 - 7:15 -- Bot-bot's story & snuggle time traditionally begins now. 7:30 - 7:45 -- finished with Bot'bot's story & snuggle, I wash my face & take a short moment before ... 7:35 - 7:50 -- read to Button 8:15: Button in bed, short snuggle. I mustn't rely on DH to put the toddler to bed, because he travels so often. But I would hate to lose that 30-ish minute stretch of good reading time. Any ideas? Should I try to give the toddler a video? let him play as long as he is "quiet"? just suck it up, and perhaps make our evening read-alouds something closer to Pippi Longstocking (which the toddler can sort of follow) than Mrs. Frisby or the Mixed-up Files (which he just can't). What do y'all do?
  20. Good Morning, dear hearts! Today is the start of week 4 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. 52 Books Blog - Oliver Twist: Highlighting the 5th fiction book in SWB's Well Educated Mind's great reads. Originally published in serial form in Bentley's Miscellany, it ran monthly from February 1837 through April 1839. For those who aren't familiar with the story, it's about a young orphan who ends up living in London with a gang of pickpockets. Dickens used the story to call attention to the treatment of orphans, child labor, poverty and the seedier side of London's criminal element. The story may be read online here, here, or here. I failed my own challenge to read the story last year, so here's my second chance and yours as well. Since Dickens birthday is February 7th, we'll declare February Dicken's month so start thinking about which Dicken's books you'd like to read. What are you reading this week? Link to week 3
  21. arrg - just ignore this one - doesn't want to edit and deleting half of what I'm trying to say. Now I have to totally retype 52 books entry for the week. This is what I get for trying to post earlier. Brain and fingers and WTM gremlins battling to the death. Who shall win.......
  22. Happy New Year! Welcome to our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our regulars, to all those joining in and those following our progress. The goal is to read 52 books. How you get there is up to you. All the mini challenges are optional. Mix it up anyway you like and most importantly, have fun. The rules are simple: The challenge will run from January 1, 2013 through December 31, 2013. Our book weeks will begin on Sunday (except for the first week) Participants may join at any time. All books are acceptable except children books.** All forms of books are acceptable including e-books, audio books, etc. Re-reads are acceptable as long as they are read after January 1, 2013. Books may overlap other challenges. **in reference to children books. If it is a child whose reading it and involved in the challenge, then that's okay. If an adult is doing read aloud with kids, the book should be geared for the 9 - 12 age group and above and over 100 pages. If adult reading for own enjoyment, then a good rule of thumb to go by "is there some complexity to the story or is it too simple?" If it's too simple, then doesn't count. We have a blog Read 52 Books in 52 weeks where you can link up to your blog and book reviews. Every Sunday, I'll start a new thread here in the Chat room.(usually around 10:00 a.m. pst) Plus a blog post with Mr. Linky on the 52 Books blog where I'll highlight authors, books from Well Educated Mind and whatever else comes to mind. If you have any questions, ask away and either me or our regulars will be more than happy to answer. Also throughout the year, I'll be presenting you with random mini weekly challenges such as pick a book by its cover, your birth year or one with a certain number or color. Challenge you to read a book in a different genre or a new to you author. Your first mission, should you choose to accept it, involves reading across the continents. We are starting off the year in Canada and will eventually end up Antarctica. Every couple months we'll travel to another continent. You can travel along or meander your way around the world. So put on your reading shoes, get comfortable and enjoy. What are you reading this week? Link to 2012 52 books wrap up
  23. I am looking into curriculum for my soon-to-be kindergartner. We are planning to do Classical Conversations, and I'm pretty sure they recommend Writing Road to reading for reading instruction, but in looking at IEW PAL, I think I might like that better. I've only looked at both of them online, so I've never actually seen them in person, so if you've had any experience with them, let me know the pros & cons. (I also have OPGTR, if that might be better than either one?)
  24. Good Morning! Today is the start of week 3 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, to all those who are just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 Books blog to link to your reviews. 52 Books Blog - Pierre Berton: Highlighting canadian journalist and non fiction writer Pierre Berton. When he died in 2004, CBC (canadian broadcasting company) put together a great short video of his life which is available to view on the blog. Be sure to check it out. PW Best new books for the week of Jan 14 including an autobiography of Georgette Heyer. Check out the excerpt in which author Jennifer Kloester describes the single time Heyer ever granted an interview. What are you reading this week? Link to week two
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