Mock Newbery 2014 Club Summer #1 Meeting

Mock Newbery 2014 Club Summer #1 Meeting

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Walk Home

Wow!  We finished Wonder!  Goodbye Auggie.  I don't think I've ever had classes stand up and cheer at the end of a book, but today two classes gave the book a standing ovation!  It's been a really special experience these last weeks sharing Wonder with you all.  I'll never forget it!  I really believe books can change lives, and this is definitely one that changed me.  How has it changed you?  Whose point of view do you wish we had heard from?  Who was your favorite character besides Auggie and why?  Who do you think changed the most and how?  Any last thoughts?

We'll do a few more things with Wonder, so keep checking back.  We'll start our next read aloud soon, so we'll be blogging about that one, too.  The next read aloud is (drumroll please)......

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Kinder Than Is Necessary


All classes are at the same point in Wonder  now, and we will be finishing it tomorrow!  I'm excited to finish it, but I'm also sad.  What an experience this read aloud has been!  I just finished my favorite chapter with my favorite sentences from Mr. Tushman:  "If every single person in this room made it a rule that wherever you are, whenever you can, you will try to act a little kinder than is necessary - the world really would be a better place.  And if you do this, if you act just a little kinder than is necessary, someone else, somewhere, someday, may recognize in you, in every single one of you, the face of God."


Friday, October 26, 2012

Fantastic Friday

This month students started reading mysteries, adventures, or action books.  Here are our group books:

The Templeton Twins Have an IdeaThe Westing GameThree Times Lucky

Chasing The Falconers (On The Run, #1)

Some books students picked as their independent books during this unit:

 The Mysterious Benedict Society (The Mysterious Benedict Society, #1) The Secret Tree Dying to Meet You (43 Old Cemetery Road, #1)
Horten's Miraculous Mechanisms: Magic, Mystery, & a Very Strange Adventure Chasing Vermeer Dead End in Norvelt

The Maze of Bones  (The 39 Clues, #1)


Spin Cams  of independent books and small group books:

Thursday, October 25, 2012


Wow!  These camp chapters are intense!  Auggie's encounter with the 7th graders is really scary.  What a surprise that Amos, Miles, and Henry showed up to help Auggie and Jack!  What are some of your predictions about what will happen when they all get back to school?  Will everything go back to normal?  How will Julian react when he find out what happened?  What will Amos, Miles, and Henry do when they get back?  Do have connections with the overnight camp story?  Have you ever been to an overnight camp?  What was it like?  How do your experiences help you understand Auggie better?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

40 Book Invitation Update

 Each class's 40 Book Invitation total (we count 100 pages as a book, but students have to complete the book to count it as more than one book):

JFB 1 (13 students): 116 books - an average of almost 9 books per student!
JFB 2 (9 students): 77 books - an average of 8.5 books per student!
SLE (4 students): 72 books - an average of 18 books per student!
KME (17 students): 191 books - an average of 11 books per student!

Grand total books read in 1st quarter:  456!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You all are doing an amazing job reading lots of books!  I'm so proud of you!  There are so many AWESOME books for kids out there, so I'm so glad you're discovering them.  I love reading through your First Quarter Reflection papers, too, to see how you've grown as readers.  Keep up the good work! 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Marvelous Monday Readers!

Because of an evacuation of one of our schools Friday, I couldn't take a picture of one of my classes - interesting day!! So instead of Fantastic Friday, I'm renaming it Marvelous Monday.

SLE Readers:
The Candymakers

Abbi is reading The Candymakers. I told her Wendy Mass is coming out with a new book, and the cover is illustrated by the same illustrator. Unfortunately, we have to wait until June 2013 until it comes out.

The Maze of Bones  (The 39 Clues, #1)

Jenna is reading The Maze of Bones.

The Lost Hero (Heroes of Olympus, #1)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)
Alec is reading The Lost Hero.

Carter is reading The Prisoner of Azkaban.

Here are some Spin Cam captures of my other readers:

JFB Readers:

More JFB Readers:

KME Readers:

Thanks to David Etkin for Spin Cam inspiration and giving me the idea to post what my classes are reading each week!

Come back tomorrow to read my blog post on our first quarter 40 BOOK INVITATION progress

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Daisy and Miranda

This was an emotional week reading Wonder!  We all felt the pain that Auggie and his family felt when Daisy died.  Rarely do I cry while reading aloud - I can usually disconnect enough to read sad stories without getting really emotional, but not with "Goodbye."   Lots of you joined me in crying, too!  There's just something about a beloved pet passing on that is so sad.  Auggie will especially miss Daisy because she loved him unconditionally.  I think that's why we love pets so much.  They don't care what we look like or even the way we act sometimes.  We can have a bad day, walk in the back door, and be greeted like we're heroes!  We made strong connections with those chapters.  It wasn't just a mini-lesson on text to self connections, we actually lived it!  It didn't take long until we were laughing again, though, with Auggie's mom's over-emotional reaction to Via's performance in the play.  I love how R.J. Palacio can have us crying one minute and laughing the next!

Everyone seemed happy that Miranda was a narrator.  It's so interesting how quickly we understood Miranda and didn't view her as a "villain" anymore (A villian is just a character whose story hasn't been told).  In one class we compared her to Jack.

What are your thoughts at this place in the book?  Who would you still like to hear from?  What do you think is coming up in the story?  There's still a lot to find out!

I LOVE the sentence about everyone deserving a standing ovation at least once in his/her life.  Take a look at these videos from classes who read about a boy similar to Auggie and when they heard it was his birthday, gave him a special gift.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Fantastic Friday!

We're reading lots of books in Mrs. Mueller's room!  Today we took a break from the work we were doing to silent read.  Thanks, Tyler, and Tyler's mom, for bringing sugar cookies to help us relax - they were delicious!

Lauren, Stephen, Cassandra, Paige C., Paige O., and Adam finished Bunnicula with Mrs. Hull.
Bunnicula (Bunnicula, #1)

Annie finished Trapped by Peg Kehret and Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo

Trapped   Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy's Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back

Paige C. finished Husky With a Heart  and Squirrels in the School by Ben M. Baglio

Husky with a Heart (Animal Ark #47)  Squirrels in the School (Animal Ark Series #17)

Paige O. finished Music of Dolphins by Karen Hesse

The Music Of Dolphins

Adam finished It Came From Beneath the Bed by James Howe

It Came from Beneath the Bed! (Tales from the House of Bunnicula, #1)

Blake finished Leonardo DaVinci (Magic Tree House) by Mary Pope Osborne and Diary of a Wimpy Kid:  Cabin Fever by Jeff Kinney

Cabin Fever (Diary of a Wimpy Kid, #6)

Caleb finished Darth Paper Strikes Back by Tom Angleberger

Darth Paper Strikes Back (Origami Yoda #2)

Maggie finished The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket and The Mozart Season by Virginia Euwer Wolf

The Mozart Season  The Bad Beginning (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #1)

Alec is reading Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle

A Wrinkle in Time (Time Series, #1)

Abbi is reading The Candymakers by Wendy Mass

The Candymakers

Carter is reading The Chambers of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2)

Look at our Spincam of other readers!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Happy Birthday, Auugie and Sentence Collections

Wonderful post today by R.J. Palacio about Auggie's birthday and her amazement about how she never expected her simple book to become such a phenomenon. Read her blog post here:
Our sentence collections were due today, and I wanted to share some of them from the group at SLE who read Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper. I'll share more from other groups in subsequent posts. I was really proud of you all and the extended thinking you did while reading the book and then reflecting back on it.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Jack Will 's Journey

Jack Will is going through a lot.  He's one of the more complicated characters in the story!  He seems to be trying to figure out who he is and where he stands.  Emma was the first one to say something about Jack's comment that he never would have said the things he did on Halloween if "Boba Fett" would have been in the room instead of "Bleeding Scream."  That clearly bothered Emma.  She said that shouldn't matter anyway.  He shouldn't have said those things either way.  I wondered if any of you thought about that.

I wonder if any of you have ever gone through the conflicts Jack has.  He seems to want to do the right thing, but isn't really sure what to do or whose side he's on.  He seems disappointed in himself and is trying to make it right.  Do you have any connections with that? 

What should Auggie do?  Should he forgive Jack Will?  Why or why not?

Later in Jack's chapter, someone said Jack seems to be feeling a little of what Auggie has felt.  He's starting to understand what it's like to be alone and rejected.  Maybe that will help him learn true empathy.  Can you think of a time that you experienced something that made you more empathetic?

Here's a cool tweet from Random House Kids' publicist, Lauren Donovan:

Lauren Donovan‏@laurencdonovan
@MuellerHolly Love it - thx! You're listed today at  & I pinned your pic of class precepts to @randomhousekids Pinterest

That tweet was in response to a blog post I wrote about what we're doing with Wonder on a WONDERblog Tour that Random House is doing in collaboration with another teacher, David Etkin, who started #WONDERschools.  We got lots of feedback about our classroom blog and the precept door at JFB!


SLE and KME - make sure you give me your precepts so we can make a wall or door of YOUR precepts!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Jack Will

We're all on Jack Will's part.  Jack is a hard one to figure out!  What is the real truth about him?  Is he really Auggie's friend?  What are you inferring about Jack?   Why did he say what he did to Julian when he didn't realize Auggie was listening?  How would you compare and contrast Summer and Jack? 

Summer's hint: