Gaming with CORE

What is CORE?

Our new bulletin board is a weekly contest connecting research and photographs. It’s called CORE:

C is for Connect


O is for Observe


R is for Research


E is for Evaluate


Put the letters together and it looks like this!


One of the important aspects of the new Common Core standards in writing is research.

research standard pix

 In the library, one way we are supporting this standard is through a fun weekly research game.Every Monday I display a new photograph on the bulletin board.



Students have until Friday to pick up a answer sheet, research the answer and return their paper to the CORE box.


Students can talk to their friends or families, look it up on our databases, use books or encyclopedias, or search on the internet for the answer.



Everyone who participates gets their name on the wall and stickers are added each week a person participates. The answer sheets are corrected. Everyone gets a fun sticker if they write down an answer. If it’s the right answer, I add a fun bookmark as well.

All of the photos I have used so far have been pictures I have taken as I have traveled to different places both near and far.


Last week, I had a photo of some Roosevelt elk grazing in North Bend, Washington with Mt. Si in the background. We had lots of entries, but only Mina had both of the correct answers. Apparently I have talked a lot about Africa because the most popular answer was gazelles grazing on the African plains!

Anyone can participate and remember it is not cheating to talk with your family about the answer. In fact, that’s a great idea because if use the internet, the adults can help you search safely.

Who said research can’t be fun? 


What search engine or database do you like to use?

What kind of photograph do you suggest I consider using in the future?

Leave a comment and let me know!


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Voting Open for 2013 Edublog Awards!

It’s an exciting time in the Bulldog Reader Library!


The Edublog Awards are open for voting!

We are one of the finalists for the Best Library/librarian Blog.

Voting this year with through the website and you will be able to see real time votes. You will have to register to vote and you can vote daily. Here is a photo from Mrs. Watanabe’s blog showing how this works:

lsitly capture 


Our blog is not showing up with our regular photo, so here’s a direct link to the BulldogReaderBlog voting tab:


Encourage your family and friends to vote for our blogging friends too in other categories. You can find our nominations in this post. See full list on Listly

Voting closes on Wednesday, December 18th at 8:59 PST (11:59 EST)

Thank you for support our blog!

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Nominations for the Eddies

Can you believe it’s been ten years since the Edublog Awards began?



The purpose of the Edublog Awards, also known as the Eddies, is promote and celebrate the educational values of social media.

Here are my nominations for 2013:

Best individual blog -  Tracy Watanabe –


Best group blog - The Nerdy Book Club –


Best new blog – Mr. Salsich –


Best class blog - Mrs. Yollis – Mrs. Yollis Classroom blog


Best student blog - Mallory Fundora -


Best ed tech / resource sharing blog  – Edutopia-


Best teacher blog  – Pauline Roberts –


Best library/librarian blog -  Shannon McClintock Miller –


Best individual tweeter - @JoAnnJacobs68


Best free web tool – Goodreads –


Best educational use of audio / video/visual/podcast -  Shawn Avery & Math Movie Network -


Lifetime achievement - Jerry Blumengarten - @cybraryman1


One of the benefits of educational blogging is to give students an authentic audience for their ideas, writing and projects. Blogging gives them the opportunity to become educated global learners, connected and ready for the 21st century world. I urge you to participate in celebrating those educators and students you respect in the social media world. Share your nominations with the world! Nominations are open until December 1, 2013.


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Hello Barcelona, Spain!

Have you ever been to Barcelona?

470_jeanette_edu_1384563055Recently I found out that I will be going to Barcelona, Spain because I was accepted into the Microsoft Partners in Learning Expert Educator program. This is what I received in an email:

Dear Expert Educator,
Congratulations!  You have been selected by Microsoft to be a part of the very first class of Expert Educators! This process was very competitive – you were chosen from over 23,000 educators in over 150 countries from around the world. Your application, learning activity, and video were outstanding. We are proud to have you as a part of this incredible group of educators.


The project I submitted was our Books to Africa project where our students in grades 1-5 made various multi-media presentations about Africa to align with our literacy outreach program. Details about the project can be found on the Books to Africa blog.

BTA Logo

In March I will be flying from Seattle,to Barcelona to participate in the Microsoft in Education Global Forum. The forum is a four day series of learning workshops as well as a showcase of learning activities. Each educator brings an example of the project he or she submitted and shares it with the other people there. It’s an unbelievable learning experience that I wish every teacher will have the opportunity to experience during their career.  When I attended the global forum last year in Prague, I left with a suitcase of memories and teaching ideas, many of which I adapted and applied to our Books to Africa project.


This year’s event is expected to attract more than 1,100 top education leaders, school leaders, educators, press, government officials, partners and sponsors from more than 80 countries. We will celebrate how technology advances students into the 21st century giving them the skills they need to actively participate in the workforce and build strong economies.  The 2014 Global Forum experience includes:

  • Collaboration and networking
  • Awards, competition and recognition for the most innovative educators and school leaders
  • Keynotes and panel discussions with world renown education experts, innovators, and partners
  • Innovative uses of cutting edge technologies for learning
  • Inspiring professional development

One of the teachers Jeanette Delgado from Puerto Rico made an infographic of all the Expert Educators from around the globe. She used to illustrate the data. It’s fun and free!



The Expert Educator program is not just about the global forum. It is a year long commitment of learning about how technology can be used to successfully in the classroom. I know I am about to embark on a journey that will be life-changing and transformative. The best part of the partners in learning program is that it is free to join. Visit and sign up today!  You will have access to thousands of projects submitted by teachers from around the globe, plus, tutorials, discussion boards, hot topics, resources, professional development and it’s all free!



 I will be documenting this experience throughout the year on this blog, so I hope my readers will check back here or on the Books to Africa blog and see what’s happening!


Have you ever been to Barcelona?

What technology do you want to learn more about?

Have you ever used Photosynth or AutoCollage?

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Hard Luck is here!

Need to read the latest book in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series?


You’re in luck! We have two new copies! You might be in Hard Luck though because they are popular. Come let me know you want it, and I will put you on the reserve list! I saw this Hard Luck van photo. I wonder where you have to be to get to see it in person!


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A Boy and his Dog

How much do you love your dog?

Are you brave enough to give him away?

duke picm

Duke, by award winning author Kirby Larson, is set in Seattle during World War II. Hobie’s father has been sent to Europe to fight in the war. Everyone is doing their part to support the war movement and Hobie hopes if he helps too, his dad will come home faster. When he finds out there’s a program where he can “lend” Duke, his German shepherd, to Dogs for Defense he is torn.



The poster in his classroom seems to be screaming at him. Are YOU doing all you can?  Hobie struggles inside. Is he really doing everything he can to help his dad? He’s saving all his dimes to buy war stamps. He’s helping his Uncle Tryg and trying to be the man of the house for his mom.


Is it enough? Hobie has spent hours training Duke and the military could use him to sniff out mines or help patrol borders. It is important work and Duke would be a great defense dog.

From the moment Hobie says yes, and watches Duke leave, he regrets his decision. What if Duke doesn’t come home? What if his Dad doesn’t come home? Does Hobie have what is takes to be this brave? You will have to read Duke and find out!

Duke launch collage

Kirby had a book launch party at Third Place Books recently. She talked about her love of history, the research about Dogs for Defense and the backstory she used from her own family that developed into the book. You can also watch an interview with Kirby talking about her book.

Kirby is a serious dog lover and a portion of the proceeds went to Reading with Rover, a local reading organization where children read to dogs and practice their reading in a fun and non-stressful way. Along with some other Reading with Rover teams, Reese and I had the opportunity to attend the launch of Duke at Third Place Books.

IMG_2028cAll the copies sold out and I think Kirby found some new fans for her books! Kirby also signed copy for our library! Thank you! Check out Duke at your local library or buy a copy at your favorite bookstore. If you would like to learn more, visit Kirby Larson’s website and find out about other books she has written.


Could you give up your dog or other pet for a good cause?

How can students help other people?





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Protect Your Online Privacy

How well are you keeping your personal information private?

Creative Common Photo: Flickr

Creative Common Photo: Flickr

Are you keeping your private information secure with strong passwords? This is the question we have been talking about in 4th and 5th grade as part of our digital citizenship unit.


Year after year, two passwords stay at the top as the most used passwords for online accounts. Do you know what they are?

#1 = Password

#2 = 123456

While easy to remember, these passwords open you up to easy access by hackers. A better idea is to choose a password that is easy for you to remember, but hard for hackers to figure out. Here are some suggestions:

  • more than 5 characters – best is at least 8
  • a combination of UPper and LOwer letters, numbers and symbols
  • AmSt$@Nd
  • initial letters of a sentence with meaning for you.
  • For example: Jane Smith runs at Juanita Beach Park in 2013  === JAsmR@JbP13
  • stay away from using personal information like your address, name, phone number, pet names, etc.

 Using computers is now a part of everyday life. Protecting your privacy and digital footprint are important rules to stay safe when you are online. Be Smart, Be Safe!


What do you think is another popular password?

Do you use an app to store your passwords? Which one?




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Bully Free Starts with Me

Did you know that you have the right to stand up to bullying?


As part of National Bullying Prevention Month, I have paired two powerful books for  first and second graders to open the conversation about how it’s not good to be mean to other people.


Bully by Laura Vaccaro Seger is a the story of a bull, who is bullied by a bigger bull. It hurts his feelings, but instead of standing up to the bigger animal, he begins bullying other, smaller animals calling them names like Slow Poke, an Pig. Eventually a Billy Goat stands up to him and shows him that he is hurting his friends and the bull stops.

Bully is a great book because it teaches the importance of reading both illustrations and text. Minimal text and simple illustrations draw attention to the emotion and tone of the words. When the words Pig! are typed in a large font, the children know immediately that Bull is name calling. When he says, “sorry” with tears in his eyes, they understand that he has made a change.


Enemy Pie,  written by the Washington state author Derek Munson, tells the story of a boy who thinks he is the enemy of Jeremy who just moved into the neighborhood. When Jeremy doesn’t invite him to a party and laughs at him when he strikes out at a baseball game, Jeremy decides to make an “enemy list”. He hangs the list in his treehouse and then tells his dad about his problem.

Luckily, Dad undertands the problem with enemies, and makes his son some Enemy Pie to give to Jeremy. When the recipe calls for him to spend some time with Jeremy and get to know him, this young boy learns that often all we need to do is spend time with an other person and get to know them. Before you know it, you’re not enemies anymore, you are best friends.

Here is a video of the story Enemy Pie, narrated by Camryn Manheim.


What steps can you take to stop people from bullying you?

What kind of Enemy Pie would you make?

Leave us a comment and let us know!

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Real Boy Book Trailer Debut

Have you read The Real Boy yet?

Imagine a story that combines fantasy + fairy tales +cats +adventure + wizards + magic + friendship into one magical  middle grade fantasy novel by Anne Ursu. Like a favorite wool cloak, Real Boy will wrap you inside a wondrous tale of magic and friendship. It is a joyful, amazing story that will surprise you over and over by the author of Breadcrumbs.

RB - Blog Tour Banner
Since early October blogs around the kidlitosphere have been celebrating THE REAL BOY with reviews, giveaways, interviews, and posts from author Anne Ursu, illustrator Erin McGuire and editor Jordan Brown. In this last stop of the blog tour, we debut our book trailer THE REAL BOY.

This post is a part of The Real Boy blog tour hosted by Walden Press Books. If you would like to read previous blog posts, check out the itinerary below.

Monday, 9/30 – Maria’s Melange – Maria’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Tuesday, 10/1 – There’s a Book – Danielle’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Wednesday, 10/2 – sharpread – Colby Interviews Anne
Thursday, 10/3 – Novel Sounds – Elena’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Friday, 10/4 – Word Spelunking – Aeicha Interviews Anne
Saturday, 10/5 – The Hiding Spot – Sara’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Sunday, 10/6 – The Brain Lair – Kathy’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Monday, 10/7 – Read, Write, Reflect - Anne Talks Oscar with Katherine
Tuesday, 10/8 – Librarian’s Quest – Margie’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Wednesday, 10/9 – Buried in Books – Heather’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Thursday, 10/10 – The Book Monsters – Kristen’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Friday, 10/11 – Cari’s Book Blog - Cari’s Take on The Real Boy + An Interview with Anne
Saturday, 10/12 – Unleashing Readers – Kellee Interviews Illustrator Erin McGuire
Sunday, 10/13 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – Gina’s Take on The Real Boy + Giveaway
Monday, 10/14 – Heise Reads and Recommends – Editor Jordan Brown Interviews Anne
Tuesday, 10/15 – Bulldog Readers Blog – The Bulldog Readers Debut Their Book Trailer
And here are all the blogs featuring exclusive artwork from THE REAL BOY.
You can find THE REAL BOY at your local school,  public library, or your favorite book store today!

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Thinking about Digital Footprints

What does your digital footprint look like?


There is no better time to think about your digital footprint than at the beginning of the school year. This fall we are concentrating our intermediate library lessons on the themes of digital citizenship. In 2007 the International Society of Technology Educators (ISTE) published their National Educational Technology Standards for Students.

These are basic rules for using technology appropriately (Etiquette), communicating effectively (Communication), and protecting student safety (Rights and Responsibilities).

A person’s Digital Footprint is the digital trail they leave each time any electronic or computer device is used. Just sent an email?   Played an online video game? Sent a photo to a friend? You left a digital footprint in each of these situations. You have the choice on whether your digital trailer is positive or negative depending on how you manage it. (CommonSenseMedia)

We watched a video introducing the concept  of person’s digital footprint.


The vital lesson to be learned is that a person’s digital footprint LASTS! It’s actually more like a digital tattoo than a footprint.  Like tattoos, your digital footprint is extremely difficult to remove.

When we learn about the importance of digital citizenship and the mark we are making on the world, it’s not a time to be scared. It’s an opportunity to make that mark thoughtfully knowing you are creating a digital legacy for yourself.

 We also talked about not sharing your “YAPPY”.

What is YAPPY you ask?
This acronym is a trick to remember what to NEVER post online.
Y = Your full name
A = Address
P = Phone number
P = Passwords
Y = Your plans

The next time to get online you might even want to find out what your digital footprint looks like already. Get together with your family and make a game of it. Simply go to your favorite search engine and type your name. See what pops up! Who has the most hits?


What does your digital footprint look like?

How do you leave your digital mark the most?

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