Friday, February 14, 2014

Chocolate Lily Celebrations!

Hello everyone:)

Thank you to all our bloggers and book reviews this past month.  We enjoyed sharing and reading your thoughts and opinion on the two past reads Hunter and Racing Home!  I was delighted to see some of the excellent writing developing amongst our bloggers, as they learn how to capture the attention of a reader and make them want to read more. To read the blog reviews go to this page here.  Congratulations to Angus and Bekah for winning book reviewing prizes this month!

 I am also thrilled at the level of open ended questions that encourage collaboration on Blackboard.  Our students are all becoming excellent moderators and worthy of teacher status!  Congratulations to Melody for getting a good conversation going on Hunter.

Winning students please share with me your email address so I can send your prizes?

If you still have a book review or comment to add to our HCS NDG Blog please go on and encourage your friends or share your opinions on this page here.  Alternately you can share your review in word document and I will add to the blogs.

Sadly we are on to our last leg of Book club for this term :)

I have ordered some of the CHOCOLATE LILY selection in our e library, and we have double copies of the books in our physical commons. The books in our e library include Maggies Chopsticks and Big City Bees.  You can order the other physical copies via Canpar and our catalogue at L4U.  So with that in place I am happy to announce the next stage of our learning...

We will have one more meeting to discuss the winner of the Chocolate Lily books in late May as well as our author read earlier on May 7th, where we hope to encourage all book club participation.  But in the meantime I encourage you to take out the books and share your review on the HCS NDG blog or share with me and I will post.  I will let you know more re our meeting date as we connect with our campus library students and other book clubs.

We are very excited to have famous Canadian authoress April Dueck come and share her writing gifts with the Red Cedar nominated book Racing Home on May 7th at 1.45 pm.  It is going to be a tough choice to decide the winner of the Red Cedar nominees, but I think my votes are for Catboy and Racing Home.  How about you?

Blessings and Happy Valentines Day!
Pippa Davies

Friday, January 17, 2014

February Meeting

Thanks for joining in our recent Christmas party, and sharing more about Catboy, your Christmas traditions and awesome art work on the white board!  :)

Gabrielle has blogged about the book on this post here on the NDG blog.  Please can you go on and comment what you liked about the book beneath her post?  I hope this starts more collaboration on the blog and will encourage others to start blogging!  :)  I would love to see you all writing a review or commenting on someone else's review to win the next prizes in book club please?  Just let me know if you or your parent would like to be invited and I will add your name as an author on the blog.  This is a wonderful way to learn how to write with voice, for a given audience.  Sharing about literacy is all part of being a book club member:D 

Our next meeting is February 5th, 2014.  Here is the link:

Hopefully that will give us all time to read the next books.     We are reading  Hunter! by Eric Walters  It shares the same story,  but from the cat's viewpoint.  If you cannot get a copy of the book we are also reading Racing Home, available on our e library here  which is on the Red Cedar book awards list.  This is an amazing read and I highly recommend!  Let me know if you are reading this book and I will order more copies for the e library.

This session will be our last novel that we read, but please note you do not have to read both books.  Only if you have time:)  Please feel free to share book reviews with me as you go and I will help you edit and submit to the blog if you want to share!  The next part of book club in the spring is sharing on picture books.  More to come soon!

Our winners for today's prizes were Gabrielle for her book review and Bekah and Angus for initiating discussions.  Way to go!  You will be receiving your Amazon gift vouchers soon via email.

 Blessings on your weekend and I look forward to seeing you on the blog :D

Thursday, November 21, 2013

December Read

Hello everyone,

What a great session we enjoyed last week with our first moderators rising to the challenge to ask questions on our read, The Westing Game, and our first two book reviews!  Prizes went to Gabrielle, Kennedy and Nathan this time.  Congrats!

Our next meeting is on Dec 11th @1.45 pm and we are reading Catboy by Eric Walters.  We have several copies of the e book in our e library.  So you don't need to purchase ;)  I have also purchased a copy of Atticus Claw Breaks the Law for our E library.  This book is being read by our British counterparts, and I hope some of you will read too.  Please feel free to read and comment on this one on the blogs.

Here is our link for our next meeting!

I look forward to seeing book reviews, or blog posts/video trailers on our NDG blog if you are interested in collaborating with the other schools?  It should be great fun!  Let me know if you need help and we can schedule a time to screen share if you want to make a video or blog post:)  Or you can send me your post and I will add to the site.

I pray that the start of the Advent season brings joy and special memories to you and your families.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

November Drop and READ!

Cover of "Westing Game"
Cover of Westing Game
Hi Everyone:)
It was so wonderful connecting with you all on Blackboard this month!  I was impressed with all of your technical and collaborative skills!  Thank you for the awesome discussion on the two books we read by Deb Ellis,  and also the comparison between first and third world countries.

Our next book club read is The Westing Game.  We will meet on November the 113th @1.45 pm.  Here is the link to sign into the classroom:

I hope you have all been able to find a copy of this book in your local library.  We have a couple ordered for the physical commons, but I could not get an e book for this one.  As we read the book I would love it if you could share on a blog,  that we have set up as a sharing space on Blogger called Global Book Reviews HCS and NDG!  I will start posting my posts there as well and then we can start asking questions and responding as we read.  In order to share a post I will need to invite you to this blog as an author?  You will need to have a gmail account to do so.   Sign into Google and set up your profile.  Please make sure you have your parent's consent! Please send me your gmail address and I will add you to the blog as an author.  Then you will be able to comment and add your own posts if you feel led to write about a particular part of the book that appealed to you:)  I will start sharing as I read the book.  At this stage I am not sure if NDG will be reading our book but this is a start and we will definitely connect on one of the books;)

  The school who shares this blog with us is to be found in Guernsey England. To find out more about their school read this article. Last year we had a wonderful collaboration re picture books in the Chocolate Lily and Kate Greenaway Awards, and then a final discussion online using Blackboard.  We also hope to involve some of our campus classmates in Kelowna in the new year.

I look forward to receiving your gmail address and whether you will be allowed to be part of this blogging adventure?  Also there will be a prize for best sharing at our next Blackboard session.  This can be sharing orally or in writing.  One of the ways book club students like to share is by writing book reviews.  So feel free if sharing on the blog or another blog to share a book review of what you are reading.  I will post to my book club blog as well under Reviews.  You might want to read some of the awesome book reviews that have gone before you;)

Many blessings and happy reading!
Mrs Davies.

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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Book Club 2013/14

Welcome to all our Book club members for a 2013/14 year of reading and literary discovery!  I am so excited to meet all our new members!!  Our grade 6-8 grades will enjoy some amazing books, collaborate in a Blackboard classroom, poll and share their suggestions on Collaborize Classroom and generally learn how to deconstruct books!

Our first read for next week's discussion on October the 9th is My Name is Parvana for the grade 7/8 students and The Breadwinner (both Deborah Ellis books and available on the E Library) for the grade 6 group.  We will have a discussion on the comparison of third world countries to first world countries, in this case Afghanistan to Canada,  using the protagonist's experience as our starting point.  In our first session we will also learn how to deconstruct a novel, share Christian worldview, and suggest and vote on the next novel.  Along the way students may win prizes for participation, techie ideas, book reviews, video creation etc.  Please have a book ready to share about at the meeting?  A link to a review would be perfect!:)
Here are some ideas for possible reads:

Red Cedar choices
Racing Home:  Adele Dueck-  In 1908, twelve-year-old Erik faces the challenges of adapting to pioneer life on the Canadian prairie, saving an injured horse with the help of his cousin, and understanding what's really going on in his family. - 

Torn Apart: The Internment Diary of Mary Kobayashi (Dear Canada) by Susan M. Aihoshi 
Catboy by Eric Walters (While trying to adjust to his move from a small northern town to the heart of Toronto, Taylor becomes interested in caring for a colony of feral cats in a junkyard, but when development threatens the colony, Taylor wonders how he can help them.)
The Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis

Other Grade 6/7/8 choices
Mrs Frisby and the rats of Nimh
My Side of the Mountain
Jungle Book
The Westing Game
The Incredible Journey
James and the Giant Peach
The Lightning Thief
Out of the Dust
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
Lost in the Barrens
Owls in the Family

During the school year we will meet and share all things literary on Collaborize Classroom, a virtual classroom.  Here students can poll and share media with each other and encourage their reading buddies.  But next week's discussion  will take place on Blackboard Collaborate.  Please make sure that you have a good headset with microphone, and check in early about 15 minutes before we get going at 1.45 pm.  We will finish up just before 3pm.

Please click on this link to get access to the classroom.

Please read the following set up when entering your classroom:
If you have a LearnNowBC username and password, you may view the meeting details here.

First Time User?

  • You may be prompted to download some software which may take anywhere from 2 to 20
  •  minutes depending on your Internet connection speed. Join your meeting early if you can.
  • A microphone and headphones or speakers will allow you to participate fully in the meeting.
  • Visit the Configuration Room and use the Audio Setup Wizard before the session to make
  •  sure your computer's audio is configured correctly.

Handy LNBC Collaborate Links:

I look forward to seeing you all at our first meeting:)  Let me know if you need help with Blackboard on the Wednesday and I will come on early to help you?
Mrs Pippa

Friday, March 8, 2013

Read-A-Thon Book Reviews!

Rayah Smith Grade 3 Flat Stanley's Worldwide Adventures - The US Capital Commotion;
I loved the book Flat Stanley's Worldwide Adventures - The US Capital Commotion.
Flat Stanley travels to Washington, D.C. and finds out that he won a medal.  He wonders why he won it
and was a little embarrassed seeing as he hadn't done anything but hold onto a flag...pretending to BE the
American Flag!!  Flat Stanley gets to meet the president of the USA.  I think it would be cool to meet
Obama Barrack!!

Rayah Smith Grade 3 Agent Amelia, by Michael Broad.   Today I read a book called Agent Amelia.
Agent Amelia is about a girl who is very smart and has saved her city from robbery.  On one of Amelia 's
 trips she keeps her teacher from stealing a very special necklace and catches 2 robbers from stealing
money from the bank. I like detective books and would love to read more from this series!  

Colton Penner Gr 5  Matilda Bone, Karen Cushman   Matilda Bone is a historical fiction novel written by Karen Cushman in 2000 and published by Yearling Books.  The setting is a medieval town and the story begins with a girl, who was raised by priest in a manor home as she is dropped off at Blood and Bone alley to be an apprentice to Red Peg, the bone setter.  Without much adventure, Matilda Bone is an enjoyable book for all ages as she learns about life and friendship in her new home.  Matilda Bone has long golden hair, ice blue eyes and a sincere personality.  Her main struggle is to fit in with her redheaded mistress, Peg and to understand town life but she scorns her daily life because of her ignorance and false teachings by Father Leufredus.  The people of the town love and help her to adapt to town life and show her the importance of people, relationships and God’s love.  Near the end of the novel, crisis suddenly strikes as Tildy, her best friend, is smacked off a stone wall by a piece of pork and fractures her skull.  Dashing to get Dr. Theobald, who is the rich town physician, she stops dead in her tracks and thinks, “Should I seek help from master Theobald, who consults the stars for advice and does not care about his patients’ lives or the loving Dr. Margery, who treats all of her patients with tender love and care?”  Walter Mudd, a minor character, shows Matilda great love as he chooses to stay with his old blind master, Nathaniel, rather than moving to another town to start his own apothecary, which would have earned him fortune.  The theme of Matilda Bone is to love one’s neighbour as yourself and in order to do this; one must truly know and care about the people around you.  Matilda Bone is an intriguing story, though without much action, which shows the importance of learning to love and accept others.  The variety of characters Matilda meets makes the story highly interesting.  Readers will learn about life in the Middle Ages, from the foods they bought at the market, to how they treated illness and the types of jobs they lived.  In order to be a great friend one must love your neighbour as yourself, just as Matilda Bone learned to love the people in her life, who became her family.  

Theo Schmidt Gr 3 Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater Mr. Popper's Penguins is an awesome, action packed book with tons of silly scenes. My favorite part is when two of the penguins get into a play fight in the basment of the Popper's house. All the other penguins gathered around, and there were lots of flippers flapping! I recommend this book to strong readers age 8+, and as a read aloud to children age 5+.

Victor Penner Gr 7 Taren Wanderer Lloyd Alexander Taran, once a poor pig-herder, has fought beside the greatest princes and warlords in Prydain. Taran has traveled far on his many quests: seeing strange and magical wonders only fantasies to most, challenging wicked enchanters and ruthless warriors and falling in love with the beautiful princess Eilonwy. He has grown in courage and wisdom, he has suffered and sacrificed, made choices that will haunt him and buried friends who died for him. He has lost much though he has learned much too, that which his loyal friends and unbearable choices have taught him, but despite his many adventures he has not learned what he seeks the most. Who are his parents? In hopes that he could unearth the secrets so long buried, Taran forsakes his home for the life of a wanderer. Throughout his travels Taran is challenged to the very core by revelations about himself, everything he has ever known is stripped away. He learns great sadness, discovering wisdom through his faults, but in the end achieves his goal, in a way he would never have dreamed. Unlike the preceding books, instead of a clash of battle hosts, Taran faces evil in many disguises, such as the deathless wizard Morda and the deceitful warrior Dorath, as well as the storm that rages in Taran`s own heart. The insight and wisdom that fill every chapter staggers the reader and the detailed description will illustrate a vivid tapestry in his head. Taran and the land of Prydain will bond with anyone who picks up the book and change their mindset of fantasy.

Karina Brown Gr 5 Challenge on the Hill of Fire Marianne Hering and Nancy Isanders.    
The Imagination Station Challenge on the Hill of Fire Authors: Marianne Hering and Nancy I. Sanders ISBN: 978-1-58997-694-8 
 This Adventures in Odyssey book is all about the characters Patrick and Beth who jump on the Imaginations station in search of adventure and Shamrocks and leprechauns. However they don't find a pot of Gold at the end of the rainbow and they don't even find a rainbow. What they actually find is nothing like the fairy tales tell you about! Fifth century Ireland was a very scary place filled with people who try and hurt Patrick and Beth, causing them to flee! Imagination station is fabulous historical fiction that is recommended for ages 7 and up. It has questions and answers about St. Patrick and a secret word puzzle on the back. This book is an exciting story that keeps you interested, you could imagine the entire story as if it were really happening. My favorite thing about this book was that you were learning and you get caught up in a great adventure. Adventures in odyssey is a great series altogether. I would highly recommend them to anyone who wants a remarkable narrative packed with adventure and real facts.  

Diquita Cardinal; Gr 8 'Unashamed' by Francine Rivers.
     'Unashamed' is part of a Series of Novels by Francine Rivers. She takes women from the Bible and tells their story and adds how she thinks life would be for them. All the women in her novels are from the line of Jesus of Nazareth. The author takes what we are told in the Bible and ads historical information to help shape a story that is really fun to read. Unashamed is about Rahab the prostitute. Rahab lives in the city of Jericho and she hears about the God who does miracles for his people the Jews. She turns away from the idols of her people and through many events becomes a believer in God. It is a love story too. Two jewish spies come into Jericho to scope out their battle options. She saves them from being discovered. When the walls of Jericho fell, Simon takes her to join their nation. I was amazed at Rahab's faith in God even though she did not know very much about him. It reminds us of God's forgiveness towards us, and how he is active in our lives when we turn our hearts to Him. It think other teens and women would enjoy this story because it brings a bible story to life.
Aiden Watson; Gr 2 Valentine's Day Disaster by Geronimo Stilton This is a great book.  I liked it because there is some comedy and adventure in it.  My favourite part was when Geronimo touched a valentine decoration and got electrocuted in mid air......don't worry, he was ok!

Caileigh Watson  Gr 1.   Elliot's Emergency by Andrea Beck.
 In Elliot's Emergency, his leg gets hurt. All his friends try to help, even his best friend Socks. I really liked this book because all of his friends help him. His friends names are Amy, Socks, Lionel and Paisley Bear. The pictures are wonderful and detailed. This is a great book and you'll have to read it to find out what happens.

Caileigh Watson Gr 1 Thea Stilton and the secret city by Geronimo Stilton.
 I liked this book because in this book people named Nicky, Colette, Violet, Paulina and Pamela find a secret city. Thea is a good strong character because she is a good friend and she's brave, smart, thoughtful and kind. My favourite part of the story was when the characters slid down a slide.
Aiden Watson  Gr 2. Geronimo's Valentine by Geronimo Stilton.
 I like this book because there were some funny parts, like when Geronimo was in a cheesecake eating contest and he nearly threw up because he ate so much. I like Geronimo because he is funny, a big fraidy cat and kind. Everything always works out in the end. I would recommend this book because there is plenty of comedy and sometimes there are adventures.
Jacob Pohl Gr 6 . Island Book One: Shipwreck
This book is about 6 troubled youth who have been put on a boat for a six week program that will turn
them hopefully into good kids. In the book there are rough seas and the ship starts to sink. The kids 
have to learn teamwork to keep the boat from sinking. The ship blows-up and the kids are stuck in the water. I would recommend this book to anyone who doesn't normally like to read because every page has action on it. It is a fictional adventure book. The book flows nicely and doesn't go back and forth on the characters. All the characters are different and they have to work out their differences to survive. This book is not a Christian book but it does not focus on violence or have any bad language. I think that Christians would enjoy this book.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

April Swiss Family survival!

Thank you God and my awesome Book club students for a great session today!  I loved hearing from all of you, with the questions posted re Swiss Family Robinson and Robinson Crusoe; the wonderful collaboration, on outdoor survival and the sharing of book reviews and Prezi by Zion, Ayrelea and Denise.  They are posted here.  I think we were all wowed by what a great literary and techie group we have! Thanks also to Jenessa for joining our group and blessing us with her encouragement.  We missed our few members who could not make the session.

Zion and Aryelea won for their techie presentation on Prezi.  Tyler won for best contribution on his outdoor list sharing and reasoning for duct tape!   Denise won for best review this month, please send me your word doc Denise?  Everyone who contributed in the discussion raised important points, and brought some encouraging comments to the fore.   Now some of the names I have shared may have already received a prize.  If that is the case please let me know?  Also if you have not received a prize after being told you were going to get one, please let me know.

You might be interested in finding out the list of survival ideas your students brought to the emergency list.  Here are the essentials:

1.  Bible
2.  Fire lighter of some kind
3.  Tarp for cover
4.  Family or friends.
5.  First aid kit and antibiotics
6.  Food of some kind
7.  Twine or duct tape.
8.  Hatchet and knife and stone for sharpening.
9.  Weapons
10.  Pot for cooking and collecting water.

We have one more session left in book club and that is for our author read and discussion.  I am collaborating with author Eric Walters, to see if he will be available to join us for a live webinar.  If this pans out we will need to read one of his books.  Soooo with that in mind I am going to let you decide which one of his books to read.  Here is a list of his potential goodies!

The Bully Boys.

Caged Eagles



Fly Boy

The Pole

We will need to have read one of his books to be able to ask him relevant questions.  Please let me know which book you are reading;)

I will let you know more about a date for our next meeting once I have spoken to Eric.  I will know more  towards the end of the spring break.  Our session will hopefully be in April.

Enjoy your holidays and see you all soon on skype, the ning or collaborize!

Many blessings
Pippa Davies