Sunday, September 6, 2015

Links worth talking about 9-6-15

Inspired by Elisabeth Ellington's weekly Links I Loved Last Week posts, I've decided to curate my own set of notable links from the past week. Last week was my inaugural post so I'm hoping, like Elisabeth, to make this a weekly event.

Another weekly event I participate in is Ruth Ayres' Celebration Saturday. Yesterday I celebrated the music of my heart -- and even got brave and sang for my blog post.

On my other blog, I reviewed three books:

A Night Divided by Jennifer A. Nielsen
This is finally the Berlin Wall novel I've been waiting for since I first visited the city back in 2004 and fell in love with its vibrant, youthful energy.

The Truth Commission by Susan Juby

Beastly Babies by Ellen Jackson, illustrated by Brendan Wenzel

On the NCTE blog, LuAnn McNabb encourages teachers to invite stakeholders into their classrooms because, as she writes:

Remember, stakeholders are just another group of students, and there’s no better way to engage students than by getting them to actively participate.

Linda Darling-Hammond, the renowned professor at Stanford who in my opinion should have been our Secretary of Education these past 7+ years, is launching an education think tank "aimed at shaping education policies nationwide." I'm excited to see where this leads.

This Chronicle Books blog post talks about the many benefits of coloring. Given my recent realization that I am struggling with anxiety, I think it's time to start pulling out the crayons and colored pencils again like I loved to do when I was a child.

Sarah Larson writes a New Yorker piece about Why You Hate Google's New Logo. Not only do I agree with her, but I also think the writing is stellar and worth sharing with students.

Thanks to Colby Sharp and Travis Jonker's new kid lit podcast The Yarn, I have begun to explore other podcasts, because sometimes I just don't feel like committing to an entire audiobook, but I can handle a 15-20 minute podcast episode. A couple of my favorites right now: Stories from the Teaching Life with Penny Kittle and Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert. What are some of your favorite podcasts?

Speaking of Travis Jonker, how can you not want to watch an Ignite Talk he gave at the 2015 Michigan Reading Association conference entitled "Be the Flava Flav of Books"? Though I was really hoping he'd wear sunglasses and a clock necklace when he gave his talk.

My friend Sarah Andersen wrote about helping high school teachers in her district and neighboring districts spread book love in their schools and classrooms.

And congratulations to my friend Kevin English who made the International Literacy Association's 30 Under 30 List. So well-deserved! 

I love Pernille Ripp's and Kristi Mraz's reasons for discouraging teachers the use of public behavior charts in their classrooms -- and also Kimberly Moran's empowering way she took the behavior chart that she was required to use and turned it over to her students.

Back in 2013, Ta-Nehisi Coates gave some wonderful advice about writing and the stamina needed for it. I think I'll be showing this video to my students in the near future.

Two Vlogbrothers videos I loved this week: John Green talks about how everyone's been misinterpreting the famous Robert Frost poem "The Road Not Taken" all these years and Hank Green talks about society's unproductive addiction to outrage.

This adorable baby who cries every time a book ends proves to us all that the struggle is real. 

Banned Books Week is coming up soon. On the NCTE blog Millie Davis talks about intellectual freedom. I particularly love the video at the end of the post.

Pope Francis continues to prove to me time after time that he is the Pope the Catholic church needs right now, choosing not to maintain the status quo, but to minister humbly and simply, just as Jesus would.

Here's another on point op-ed from Leonard Pitts, Jr. this week where he says:
In deciding between its children and its guns, America had decided the loss of the former was... "bearable."

A single Tweet is all it took for me to follow Christian author Rachel Held Evans.

Apropos of nothing related to this blog other than the fact that it includes a place in my beloved Ann Arbor, and it's a restaurant I love, here is USA Today's 10 Best: Awesome Burgers Across America.

Also apropos of nothing other than my husband and I are big Michigan football fans and have season tickets for the first time this year (and I love Charles Woodson):


  1. Really loving your Links posts! Hope you'll keep it up. I'm newly obsessed with podcasts, to the point where I'm struggling to listen to audiobooks at all right now. I love Books on the Nightstand and Happier with Gretchen Rubin.

  2. Also had to comment on the coloring link: my Creative Mind capstone course has been coloring and the students are LOVING it. Like even when I don't give them coloring homework, some of them are choosing to color! I've been buying grown-up coloring books for years and absolutely love them. Good quality colored pencils are a must.