Tag Archives: 2nd grade

Second Grade Library Tour–Intro to the Library

So the second graders from the local school are once more coming to visit, yay! This time the teacher has not given me a topic assignment, we will start with “intro to the library.” I have about a half hour, and just me, 50 students and two teachers. So far the plan is evolving, and since I get to do this program twice, it may change after the first run through.

After introductions, we’ll discuss the library and who has been here and how one can get a library card.

Next we’ll read Miss Brooks Loves Brooks! (And I Don’t), Miss Brooks Loves Books! (And I Don't) which is nice because it really shows how librarians can not just help people find the specific book they want, but also a book they may not know exists or that they would want.

We’ll talk about what kinds of books they like and what kinds of things they can find in our library. I’ve pulled a bunch of materials of different kinds and I want to show them to the kids. I’ll go over stories versus informational, and where the books are located.

After talking about the fun materials we have here, I’ll talk a little bit about our programs and encourage them to come to the star party we’re having next week.

I’ll finish with reading Interrupting ChickenInterrupting Chicken and inviting them to come to the library with their parents/guardians to get a library card!


Celebrations Around the World

A second grade teacher at a nearby school asked if she could bring her students and those of another teacher to learn about Cinco de Mayo. Not my favorite holiday, but a good opening to a discussion of how things are around the world. I talked about two holidays that are both celebrated May 5th on different sides of the planet: Cinco de Mayo in North America and Children’s day in Asia, with an eye to promoting our summer reading club on One World, Many Stories.

Because life is like this sometimes, the group showed up at 1 p.m. for a 1:30 presentation, and I walked in the door from running errands with half of my lunch left to hear that the 50 second graders were already here. So we dove right into the presentation!

Cactus Soup First up I’ll read Cactus Soup, which is a variant of the traditional tale “stone soup” set in Mexico during one of their revolutions. I’ll tell them there are two important things to learn from the book. The first is about Mexican culture and history. And the second is about the story itself.

The history that leads up to the various Mexican revolutions int he 19th century is very messy and complicated. I’m going to do a very short presentation on the history of this holiday. I have a good short book that explains it simply. Cinco De Mayo (The Library of Holidays) I want to put some pictures up so the kids can see what these celebrations are like. I also want to point out that there are all kinds of celebrations around the world that are different from ours. I’ll share the fact that the 5th of May is also a holiday in Japan. That it is the celebration of Kodomono-hi.

From this discussion of the holiday, I want to move to folk tales in general and worldwide, so I can promote the Summer Reading Program here. I’ll ask the kids if they can remember the story we read, and explain the outline. Then I’ll show some other variations–stone soup, button soup, and different books. The fact that folktales have different variations and can be told in different ways around the world is one of our Summer Reading Program weekly themes, so it makes a nice segue into discussions of the Summer Reading Program. Stone Soup Button Soup (Bank Street Level 2*)

Sign-ups start May 31st, right after Memorial day. When you sign up you get a program guide with a reading log where you record how much you read each week. When you’ve read or been read to for 3 hours or more in a week, you can come into the library for a prize. Also on the reading log is a calendar of our awesome events. All our Children’s Summer Reading Program events will be at 10:30 every other Wednesday, starting on June 6th. We will be having a professional story teller, a world traveler, musical guests, and lots of games, crafts, and snacks! At our final party, children can get a prize bag, with a book in it!

After discussing the particulars of our Summer Reading Program, I’ll close with a retelling of a Mexican folktale, Borreguita and the Coyote, based on Verna Aardema’s account. Borreguita and the Coyote (Reading Rainbow Books)

Suprise Second Grade Visit

So apparently I scheduled a 2nd grade visit while I was in the middle of a long reference question, and now do not remember what I said I would talk about. Yeah, not great. I plan on calling on Monday before to double check, but in the mean time I am planning a simple class visit. We have some fun programs coming up at the library and ideally these class visits will encourage more kids to come to the library.

Spot the Plot: A Riddle Book of Book Riddles While the schools I visit are all pretty close to the library, I’m always amazed how many of the kids have no idea where the library even is! So I like to start with an introduction to me and where the branch is located. I’m hoping to include more poetry in my school visits, but I’m always tempted to read a few of the poems from Spot the Plot, though I’ve used it a number of times.

Interrupting Chicken After that I encourage the kids to come to the library and ask me for book suggestions, or to find a book they can’t quite remember. Then I read a longer story, this time I want to try Interrupting Chicken, which I love, but haven’t had a chance to read to any kids yet. I think it will work well for the second graders.

A Picture Book of Harry Houdini I’ll finish with a book about Houdini to promote our magic show, I’m thinking A Picture Book of Harry Houdini, by David Adler.

This will work, so long as the teacher doesn’t tell me they had something specific in mind!

Dr. Seuss Celebrations, Part 1

It was Dr. Seuss’s birthday last week, and we went all out to celebrate one of our favorite authors. Not only did we host 2 second grade classes to present stories, activities, and crafts, but we held a party, and are continuing our festivities by going to a Spanish immersion program (my assistant is the Spanish speaking one, she is actually the one doing that program).

Our first program was a returning group of 2nd graders, the same students who came to learn about Shakespeare last month. The teacher left the topic up to me, and I was going to share books from the county reading program. When the teacher heard about our Seuss program, however, she requested I share Seuss with her students.

And To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street I started with some stats on Seuss. There is a nice bio of him here. I especially liked the information about And To Think that I Saw it on Mulberry Street my favorite Seuss book. It was his first book, and received 27 rejections before it found a publisher. Seuss based the scenes in the book on streets from his childhood home, even the name of the street is a real place in Springfield Massachusetts. After reading the book we worked to create a story together. All of the students walked down the block from their street, so we started
“As I walked to the library today, I saw a ______________. It couldn’t be a _________________. No, no. What I really saw was _________________________________________________ _________________________________________________ _________________________________________________. And to think that I saw it all on the walk to the library!”

I encouraged the students to help me build on what they saw to create a story of their own.

My Many Colored Days After that, we talked about how the things we could have seen made us feel. Then I introduced one of Dr. Seuss’ last books My Many Colored Days, which we read and then wrapped up with a quick craft. I had wooden stick people and tissue paper. The kids could color the stick to represent their emotions.

I’ll post more about the other programs later!

Shakespeare for Second Graders

This was an interesting dilemma, how do you present the Bard to 2nd graders? Seventeenth Century London might as well be outer space, so I decided to take the students on a trip back in time. In another life, I used to be a graduate student in Early Modern English History, so it was fun to go back to my own past.

This group walked down from a nearby school, and for second graders were a very attentive audience. I started by reading Will’s Quill, or How a Goose Saved Shakespeare, Will's Quill and then took them back in time with a PowerPoint based loosely on this book: Shakespeare's London: A Guide to Elizabethan London

It was a lot of fun, and I was invited to give the presentation to the other half of the 2nd graders at that school.