Linda Kulp Trout

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Holiday Reading Fun

What do you get when you mix poetic picture books, holiday music, a few snacks, and kids?  Our Picture Book Holiday Read-In!  On Monday, I filled several tables in our media center with picture books. My middle school students were allowed to choose which books they wanted to read.

I loved hearing their excitement as they recommended a book to a classmate, bragged about the number of books they read during our Read-In, and told me their favorite details from their books.   The students are in my six reading intervention classes. They don't usually list reading as their favorite activity.  Yet, there they were enjoying books!  

Many of the kids commented about how relaxing the time the read-in was. It was like they suddenly discovered READING!  I encouraged them to find a book and have their very own read-in at home. 

I thought I'd share a few photos. You might recognize some of these books! 

Another fun holiday activity this week was watching my granddaughter, Evie,  decorate her Christmas tree.  All the decorations ended up on one side, but it was the most beautiful tree I've ever seen.  Then we baked cookies!

Happy Holidays!

Head on over to Buffy's Blog for more poetry fun!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Poetry Friday: The Meaning of Christmas

I had a wonderful time at NCTE, and the highlight was meeting some of my favorite poets. It was a magical three days, and I wanted to share my excitement. I planned a blog post, but time slipped away from me. From the minute I got home, I hit the ground running and before I knew it, I was knee-deep back in the daily rush!   Maybe that's why it's been so hard for me to get into the holiday mood this year.

I love Christmas. I love baking, addressing cards, wrapping presents, and putting up the tree.   Yet, this year, the joy wasn't  there.  It felt like I was just going through the motions to get things done. 

Then while rushing home from work today, "Away in a Manger" came on the radio.  Outside my car window, snow was falling, and  the world seemed to slow down.  As I listened, I could feel my spirit lifting. I could feel Christmas.

"Away in a Manger" is the first Christmas carol I learned as a child. I don't know how I learned it(maybe from my mother), and I love singing it every year.  It so simply, yet so perfectly reminds us of the true meaning of Christmas. It was the song I needed to hear.

It's amazing how a song can change your mood.  So, what song gets you in the holiday spirit?  I hope you'll share it in the comments. I'll be taking a break from posting for a few weeks so I'll see you again in the new year!

Have a blessed and joyous holiday, and remember to take a little time for yourself! 

Paul, one of my new friends I met at NCTE, is our host for Poetry Friday at These 4 Corners.