Monday, May 13, 2013

Platypus Police Squad Blog Tour--Interview With Jarrett Krosoczka


This post has been cross-posted at A YEAR OF READING as part of the PLATYPUS POLICE SQUAD Blog Tour,  Ms. Hahn put the post together, and included the interview from  the TTI team.



We are thrilled to give you a sneak preview of Jarrett Krosoczka's art in his new book, Platypus Police Squad: The Frog Who Croaked








Look like fun? Here's the book trailer:



Want to know more? Here's an interview with Jarrett:

How did you think of writing Platypus Police Squad?
I was actually trying to write a book called "Penguin Police Squad," but then penguins were just everywhere, so I began to search for another animal that started with the letter "P" and I came to the mighty platypus! But it all started in 2004 when I drew a character from Punk Farm a year before that book was published. A kid guessed incorrectly that my next book was about a bunch of farm animals that were cops. So that stuck with me--a book about animal cops who wore aviator sunglasses!

Why did you make the characters platypuses instead of humans?
When you work with animals, you can get away with more things than if the characters are humans. Also, platypuses are way funnier than humans! 

Why do the place and the time from each chapters change?
Each chapter represents a different scene in the investigation. It's almost as if the chapters were pulled from a case file that the detectives needed to file after the case was solved!

How many books will be in this series? Can you tell us anything about upcoming books?
Right now we are planning on four. The second book is called The Ostrich Conspiracy and it takes place in the newly built Kalamazoo City Dome. (There's a teaser for this at the end of book 1.)

How did you get the Idea to write the Lunch Lady series?
After a chance encounter with my old lunch lady, I began wondering about her life. One led thing to another and I started writing a graphic novel series about a lunch lady who fought crime!

Why are the tools used as weapons in Lunch Lady?
Well, if you saw your lunch lady walking the halls with nunchucks, you'd begin to ask questions, now wouldn't you? And Lunch Lady simply can't have her cover blown, which is why her nunchucks are disguised as fish sticks. Besides that, she does spend her entire time in the cafeteria, so she is surrounded by resources to create crime-fighting gadgets!


Still want more? Check out the Platypus Police Squad Virtual Launch Party on May 23 -- chat with Jarrett and win prizes!!



Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Time to Interview N.D. Wilson

Today we are interviewing the author of 100 Cupboards, N.D. Wilson.  We read his book as a class read aloud and we all loved it. The book is a fantasy about a boy who found magical cupboards. Each cupboard takes you to a different place. This is the first book in a trilogy.  


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Book Review: H.I.V.E.


       

        H.I.V.E  is a book about a boy named Otto Malpense. He lives in an orphanage. He saved the orphanage by “convincing” the Prime Minister to not close it down. By doing that somehow a lady tracked him down and shot him with a special kind of sleeper gun. While he’s asleep people take him to a school called H.I.V.E. H.I.V.E stands for The Higher Institute of Villainous Education. He meets some friends and they all make a plan to escape H.I.V.E. Can Otto and his friends survive their stay at H.I.V.E and escape? Read the book H.I.V.E to find out!
The author of H.I.V.E. is Mark Walden. There are seven books in the series of H.I.V.E. The first book is H.I.V.E.: The Higher Institute of Villainous Education. The second book is H.I.V.E.: The Overlord Patrol. The third book is H.I.V.E.: Escape Velocity. The fourth book is H.I.V.E.: Dreadnought. The fifth book is H.I.V.E.: Rogue. The sixth book is H.I.V.E.: Zero Hour. The seventh book in the series is H.I.V.E.: Aftershock. Mark Walden is coming out with the eighth book. The eighth is going to be called H.I.V.E.: Deadlock.

P.D.

Book Review: How to Steal a Dog by Barbara O'Connor


     


     Barbra O’ Connor made up this awesome book called How To Steal A Dog.  Before I get to the story I have a question.  Have you ever thought where your classmates live?  Have you ever thought if they were poor and lived in a car?  Who would ever think of these questions?  But what happens if it’s true? What happens if your best friend lives in a car?  Or their dad ran away when they were just two, and they just never told you?  Well that’s what Georgina’s life is like.  Her dad ran away with almost all their money.  Now she lives in a car with her mother and brother Toby.  
Georgina is getting sick of their car and she gets a crazy idea.  What happens if she could steal a dog that somebody loved so much they would pay $500 for?  If she succeeded she would say I found the dog and get the $500.  So Georgina goes out looking for the perfect dog and spots one.  Georgina takes the happiest dog in the world and hides him.

Will Georgina be able to hide the dog and get the $500 to get a new home or will she get caught?  To find out read How To Steal A Dog by Barbra O’ Connor!



C.M.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Time to Interview Shane Evans


Shane Evans came to Indian Run Elementary School in March. Shane Evans was thoughtful enough to take a couple of minutes to let us interview him----LIVE!  Our whole group was very excited about it because it was our first one in person. We got to meet the author, Shane Evans, and he was very kind. 


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Thursday, April 11, 2013

Time to Interview Kate Messner


Welcome to our third TTI interview. We interviewed Kate Messner, author of Capture the Flag and Hide and Seek.  We are trying different formats for our interviews. We wrote questions on Pages, then emailed the questions to Kate Messner.  She answered them. Then we wrote our questions and her answers to post.

TTI TEAM: What is your favorite genre to write?

KATE MESSNER: That’s a difficult question for me to answer because I really love writing in lots of different genres — from quiet picture books about nature, to funny chapter books, to thrillers and mysteries. But right now, today, I’d have to say mystery because that’s where my brain is at the moment. When I finish writing to you, I’ll be heading downstairs to my writing room to work on MANHUNT, the third mystery in my Silver Jaguar Society series!
TTI TEAM:  Did anyone inspire you to be an author? If so, who?

KATE MESSNER: My parents always encouraged me to write, so they were one inspiration.  My other big influences were the authors whose books I read when I was a kid. I thought Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume were amazing — the way they could invent characters who felt as real to me as my flesh-and-blood classmates. They made me want to write stories, too.

TTI TEAM:  What is the most challenging thing about being an author?

KATE MESSNER: For me, the most challenging thing is drafting a new project.  When I’m researching and brainstorming, I’m all kinds of excited about the new idea. And by the time I’m revising, it’s in good shape and I feel like a really good writer because I’m making the manuscript stronger and better. But drafting? My first drafts are often messy, with lots of scattered ideas,  and when I’m in the process of writing that first draft, I hate to even read what I’ve written sometimes.  

And of course, the other hard thing is letting go of a project. When I’m working on a book, it only belongs to me, and there’s a certain joy in that — writing just for yourself. But when the book comes out and shows up in bookstores and libraries, it’s not just “my book” any more; it’s everybody’s book, and that means different people will react to it in different ways. Not everyone will like it, and that’s okay, but it’s one of the tough parts of being an author.
TTI TEAM:  When did you first realize you wanted to be an author?

KATE MESSNER:  Well, I always loved writing stories, but when I was a kid, I didn’t really understand that being an author was a job that you could have — like being a teacher or doctor or something. So when I was little, I wanted to be a marine biologist.  It was after I started teaching (and sharing lots and lots of books with my students) that I remembered how much I loved telling my own stories and started writing seriously for publication. 

TTI TEAM:  How did you get the idea of writing Capture The Flag?

KATE MESSNER:  The reason I wrote this book might surprise you. It’s because I really love airports. I love how busy and bustling they are…and how everyone at an airport is going somewhere, and everyone has a story. Some people are having the best days of their lives and some may be having the worst. Airports are just super-charged with stories – and I couldn’t imagine a better place to set a mystery.

TTI TEAM:  What was the most challenging part of writing Capture The Flag?

KATE MESSNER:  Figuring out exactly HOW the bad guys could steal the Star Spangled Banner!  Happily, I don’t have much personal experience with committing huge crimes like this, so that required some real work. As an author who travels to visit schools and libraries, I’ve spent a lot of time in airports, but the other setting for this book – the Smithsonian Museum of American History – required a special research trip. I spent a morning at the museum before it opened – I toured the flag exhibit with its curator, prowled the back hallways, and even rode one of the freight elevators until I figured out just how my make-believe bad guys might pull off their Star Spangled heist. 

TTI TEAM:  Why did you decide to make the Star Spangled Banner stolen? 

KATE MESSNER:  When I knew I wanted to write a heist story set in an airport, I sort of went “shopping” online at museum websites to find the perfect thing to steal. I considered Lincoln’s top hat and Dorothy’s ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz, but ultimately, the flag seemed like a more super-charged symbol. Not only is it truly valuable in terms of monetary value; it’s priceless as a symbol of America, and that means the stakes for the mystery would be extra high.

TTI TEAM: Where did you go to college and what did you major in?

KATE MESSNER:  I went to  Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communication and majored in broadcast journalism. I was a TV news producer and report for seven years before I went back to school to get my teaching degree later on.




Thursday, March 21, 2013

Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark




 Disney After Dark is the first book in The Kingdom Keepers series by Ridley Pearson. This is a book that is good for ages ten and up to enjoy. It is about 300 pages long. There are 5 books in the series but there is a new one coming out this April. The new one is called The Dark Passage.

On the first book’s cover, it shows 5 kids in purple and white mist. Also there is a purple and white face. I’ll give you a clue. That face is Maleficent’s. The one from Sleeping Beauty.

The book is about how 5 young teens are models for a new Disney thing called DHIs-short for Disney Host Interactive. All 5 kids are now DHIs in the park at night because there is a glitch in the Disney computer system. So now they go to the Magic Kingdom every night and the characters come alive each night.  The teens have to stop the evil characters from taking over the park.

When I first read  this book it was great and I tried to get everyone to read it. You should read it too!

by B.S.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Teacher Interview: Mrs. Guehl






Welcome to TI teacher Interview.  Today I interviewed a teacher named Ms. Guehl.  This is  one out of many interviews. When I thought of TTI, I wanted to show people what teachers do and get. My goal is to give teachers more credit on what they do. 

The one person who really helped me was Ms.Sibberson. She helped motivate me so I owe her one--thanks.

DL

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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Time to Interview Katherine Applegate



Welcome to our second TTI interview. Today, we will be interviewing Newbery winning author, Katherine Applegate. She is the author of The One and Only Ivan.

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(If you like this interview, check out our last TTI interview with Barbara O'Connor, author of How to Steal a Dog.


Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Time to Interview Barbara O'Connor



Welcome to our first interview on TTI.  Today we will be interviewing Barbara O'Connor.  She is the author of How to Steal a Dog.  

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Monday, February 25, 2013

Book Review: Lost and Found


I think Lost and Found by Andrew Clements is a 5 star book.After I pick up the book I can’t put the book back down.

Two twin brothers are moving so they have to go to a new school. Then they have a crazy thought. After Jay stays home sick on the first day of school. On the second day of school, Jay feels better then pretends to to be Ray Grayson and Ray pretends to be Jay Grayson then the to Grayson twins take turns going to school.Then they realized they could not do this all year. So then they said to each other they will tell everyone on Friday, but Ray told Melissa (someone in his class) then she told someone and that someone told someone and so on. Read Lost and Found to find out what happens.

Fun Fact: Ray’s full name is Ray Jay Grayson and Jay’s full name is Jay Ray Grayson since they’re twins.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Book Review: The Red Pyrmid


     The Red Pyramid is the first book in the Kane Chronicles series. The author is Rick Riordan. Rick Riordan is also the author of the Heroes of Olympus series and the New York Times #1 best-selling series Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The genre of The Red Pyramid is mythology. The Red Pyramid is very suspenseful and adventurous.
     On Christmas Eve [One of the two times a year Carter Kane and his dad Dr. Julius Kane gets to see his younger sister Sadie Kane] they all go to a museum in London. Their dad accidentally breaks the one and only Rosetta Stone, their dad also accidentally sets an evil god free along with 4 others, and their dad gets trapped in an ancient Egyptian sarcophagus. Can Sadie and Carter save their dad and stop the evil god? Read The Red Pyramid to find out!
     Right now there are three books in the Kane Chronicles: The Red PyramidThe Throne of Fire, and The Serpents Shadow. The first book in the Kane Chronicles is The Red Pyramid. The second book in the Kane Chronicles is The Throne of Fire. The third book in the Kane Chronicles is The Serpents Shadow. If you're lucky Rick Riordan will make a fourth book and if you're really lucky he'll make a fifth.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Creating a Logo for a Blog Series

There are some students in our class who do book reviews and interviews for writing time.  They also created their own logos. The reason they wanted to create logos was because of "It's Monday! What Are You Reading?" had a logo and so did "Slice of Life". They thought it would be a good idea to have their own logos for their blog series.  Read this post and you might learn how to make your own logo.

Here is the Book Reviews logo:



We asked him how he came up with the idea.

Q:  What did you make your logo on?
A:  I took a picture of a bookshelf and pasted it on Pages.

Q:  Why did you take a picture of a bookshelf?
A:  I just liked the idea of a bookshelf.

Q:  What does your logo say?
A:  Book Reviews

Here is the logo of a kid who interviews teachers at our school:


Q:  What did you make your logo on?
A:  Pages

Q:  What did you want your logo to look like?
A: Just make it simple.

Q:  What does your logo say?
A:  Teacher Interviews

Here is the logo from the group that is going to interview authors:


Q: What did you make your logo on?
A: Pages

Q:  What's your name on the logo?
A:  T.T.I. (Time to Interview)

Q:  Why is it called that?
A:  We all liked the name.

Q:  How did you want your logo to look?
A:  We wanted to to be simple.

That's our last interview! Check out our blog for these logos and blog series posts!

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Unforgettable Season


 If you like baseball you will like this book. This book is nonfiction. The book is called The Unforgettable Season by Phil Bildner. But the subtitle is "The Story of Joe Dimaggio,Ted Williams and the Record Setting Summer of 1941". The front cover shows the two players on each side of the book. He writes chapter books, picture books and nonfiction books. One of his chapter books is called Sluggers. He’s coming out with a new teen book.

       The book is about how Joe Dimaggio might make a record  of hitting a ball every game. Also it is about how Ted Williams might break the record for the most batting average. Will they break the records or not?

       I think it was a good book. But someone in my class said “I don’t read a lot of nonfiction and it just caught my eye.” He also said “ It was a really good book.”I  like this book and somebody else likes it. So it has to be good. 
B.S.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Book Review: The Lightning Thief


     Today I'm reviewing The Lightning Thief. The Lightning Thief is the first book in the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series.
      Rick Riordan is also the author of the Heroes of Olympus series and the Kane Chronicles trilogy.
     The genre of The Lightning Thief is mythology.
     Percy isn't a very normal kid. He hasn't lasted at one school for more than a month. He is ADHD and he has dyslexia. Percy can also stay underwater for a long time. His best friend's name is Grover. Then some weird stuff happens: His substitute teacher accuses Percy of stealing some lightning bolt. Then Grover goes over to Percy's house and asks Percy's mom to take him and Percy to a camp for kids with " special abilities." On the way to camp a huge bull thing tries to kill Percy then kidnaps his mom. Then Percy, Grover, and a girl named Annabeth sneak out of camp to save Percy's mom. Can they save Percy's mom and prove Percy innocent? Read The Lightning Thief to find out!
     There are five books in the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series. The first book is The Lightning Thief. The second book is The Sea of Monsters. The third book is The Titans Curse. The fourth book is The Battle of the Labyrinth. The fifth and final book is The Last Olympian. Rick Riordan will not be writing any more books in this series.
P.D.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Green Screen



Flickr Photo http://www.flickr.com/photos/mrjerz/3605477488/ 
This year our class did a Green Screen project about math problems. We had to read the problem and then make a background that matched the problem.  We acted out or told the problem in front of the green screen.  We got to choose and make a background then record our project. We put a giant green sheet in the background that we stand in front of and record our video. Our class thinks that the green screen is a fun project to learn! 

We put the video on the desktop and then pull up iMovie and import the movie. Don’t forget to put and place the back ground! If you use a blue screen it will not work. You can also do a green screen picture. If you don’t want too do a video you can put yourself in front of the White House for a project or a piece about the White House. Green screens are perfect for longer projects about animals that live somewhere you can go. You can put yourself where the animal lives and if you’re lucky you can put the animal next to you. 

So do not use a blue,red,black or yellow.ONLY GREEN WORKS ON THE GREEN SCREEN! If you are wearing green and you step in front of the green screen you will be invisible! So don’t wear green! 

We used a normal ipod to record and used something called IMovie. We had fun and all of them turned out to be a success thanks to Mr. Tucker and Mr. Sibberson!    
This year our class did a Green Screen project about math problems. We had to read the problem and then made a background that matched the problem and acted out or told the problem in front of the green screen.  We got to choose and make a back ground then record our project. We put a giant green sheet in the background that we stand in front of and record our video. Our class thinks that the green screen is a fun project to learn! 

We put the video on the desk top and then pull up iMovie and import the movie. Don’t forget too put and place the back ground! If you use a blue screen it will not work. You can also do a green screen picture. If you don’t want too do a video you can put yourself in front of the White House for a project or a piece about the White House. Green screens are perfect for longer projects about animals that live somewhere you can go. You can put yourself where the animal lives and if you’re lucky you can put the animal next to you. 

So do not use a blue,red,black or yellow.ONLY GREEN WORKS ON THE GREEN SCREEN! If you are wearing green and you step in front of the green screen you will be invisible! So don’t wear green! 

We used a normal ipod to record and used something called IMovie. We had fun and all of them turned out to be a success thanks to Mr. Tucker and Mr. Sibberson!    

This year our class did a Green Screen project about math problems. We had to read the problem and then made a background that matched the problem and acted out or told the problem in front of the green screen.  We got to choose and make a back ground then record our project. We put a giant green sheet in the background that we stand in front of and record our video. Our class thinks that the green screen is a fun project to learn! 

We put the video on the desk top and then pull up iMovie and import the movie. Don’t forget too put and place the back ground! If you use a blue screen it will not work. You can also do a green screen picture. If you don’t want too do a video you can put yourself in front of the White House for a project or a piece about the White House. Green screens are perfect for longer projects about animals that live somewhere you can go. You can put yourself where the animal lives and if you’re lucky you can put the animal next to you. 

So do not use a blue,red,black or yellow.ONLY GREEN WORKS ON THE GREEN SCREEN! If you are wearing green and you step in front of the green screen you will be invisible! So don’t wear green! 

We used a normal ipod to record and used something called IMovie. We had fun and all of them turned out to be a success thanks to Mr. Tucker and Mr. Sibberson!    

Monday, January 14, 2013

Reading Nonfiction Books


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Our class pretty much reads nonfiction books every day.  We often start our day with nonfiction.  We just finished a read aloud book called Extreme Scientists.  The part our class read was about Hurricane Hunters.  We also have different baskets for different topics of nonfiction-from animals to weather to girls' clothing. A lot of people read different books. Some popular book topics are sports and animals.  The whole class has a variety of nonfiction books. We read National Geographic, Wonderopolis, DOGO News,  to Face to Face series and even Sports Illustrated.  Some of our favorite nonfiction authors are Seymour Simon, Nic Bishop, Steven Jenkins, Irene Kelly and Nicola Davies.

Which nonfiction books do you like best? PLEASE COMMENT!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Ruth Ayres: A Google Hangout Visit

We had a Google Hangout Visit with Ruth Ayres. She is a writer from Two Writing Teachers and she talked to us about Slice of Life writing.  She is so nice because she's a busy writer but she had time to hang out with us. We asked her lots of questions and she answered them.  She has been writing since she was a little kid.  She has written Slices of Life since 2008. She wrote more than 400 Slices of Life.  We had fun talking with Ruth Ayres. She was so nice. We think she liked doing a Google Hangout with us too.

You can also write your own Slice of Life. You can write in or your notebook, or a blog or on the website.  Just go to Two Writing Teachers.  You can visit the website if you want to or if you are free.

We like to Skype with authors a lot.

You might want to visit Slice of Life. All teachers and kids can do it this year.  Do you like it? Please comment and answer.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Book Review: Infinity Ring

This is the first in a series of Book Reviews that you will find on our blog!  You will know the reviews in this series when you see the "Book Reviews" logo.


       I think Infinity Ring #1: A Mutiny in Time is the best book ever. It is the 1st book in the series. The genre is fantasy because they go back in time. It is by James Dasher, but the next book is by Carrie Ryan. The front cover shows a compass in front of some gears. The compass is pointing to the 20. There is a top secret file in the front of the book. Don’t open it before the book and then when you're done with it, you should open it.

Infinity Ring: Mutiny in Time starts out like this:  Dak and Sera are best friends. They are at the Museum of Natural History . The next thing they know there is a earthquake. When the earthquake stopped they went  home and rested. The next day they went into Dak’s parents' lab and  found the Infinity Ring.  Read the book to see what happens next.

     I think Infinity Ring is in my top ten books. This book series is going to have 6 books. I really like it.