Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Book Pushing Ninja and the Biblionasium

My new moniker, the Book Pusher, must be one that has passed down through our ancestry, because today we visited the Mother of the Book Pusher- Gram.  She has much more Middle School reading expertise, as she has been in the business for almost 35 years.  Like the seasoned professional book pushing ninja that she is, she worked book recommendations into our lunch conversation and had the Boys choosing books from her library before they even realized what had hit them.  <POW!> And they BOTH were excited!  One (who will not be named) was even so excited about his selection that he started reading it in the car on the way back home (and is on page 74- I peeked).

Here's C.J.'s review:
Today I read Notes From the Midnight Driver.  I'm reading it because my grandma gave it to me. Also because its from my favorite author (Jordan Sonnenblick).
Notes from the Midnight Driver is about a high school student named Alexander who is mad about his parents getting divorced so he gets drunk and wants to give his dad a piece of his mind. But since he's drunk he can't make it past his block and smashes into a lawn gnome on his neighbor`s lawn. As a punishment he has to visit the old folks home and spend 5 hours a day with a guy named Sol (who is really good at poker).  So far I am half-way through the book and I am really enjoying it.

Mom's note:  Now, I'm not really thrilled about this whole drunk-driving thing, but Gram assures me that it is a really great book.  I'm going to trust her, since she is older and wiser than I.

Today we also went to the orthodontist.

Here is the review from the brace-face:
Hi this is P.J. The book I read was Eyewitness books Vietnam War. I chose this book because I have wanted to know about the only war America has lost in history. After reading this book I now know why America went into the war and how they lost it. The reason they lost it was because America relied mostly on air support and when the Vietnam soldiers sneak attacked American bases, you can't call in air support on your own base. (can you?) I would give this book a 9 out of 10 because it was a very good book and had a good sense of information.  P.S. Today I went to see my grandma and she has a very good relation with books.  She is a Reading teacher and today she recommended the book Dead End in Norvelt, which I will be posting about tomorrow and I can't wait to read it!

In the continued spirit of my new found resolution to listen, I also discovered a great website that has been described as a "GoodReads for kids."  It is called Biblionasium:  Where Kids Flex their Reading Muscles

As a parent, I have hesitated to release my kids into the world of social networking.  The Boys have not asked for facebook accounts, and that is just fine with me.  However, I do see the value of using social media for an educational purpose like this.  Biblionasium was created with the intent of providing a safe environment for parents and teachers to share and recommend books that are appropriate for the kids in their lives.  For a more detailed description of the platform, the benefits of using it, and the built in safety measures, click here.
If you are interested in my two cents, I personally like it because I know that I am the only adult who can interact with my Boys.  I set up the account, and therefore I control it.  I can set reading goals for them with rewards (if I choose), but they were so excited about having a place to catalog and review books online, I don't feel the need to set up artificial prizes for them.  They set up their cool Avatars and added the books that they read, but together we can search and recommend books for each other from tens of thousands of titles that are in the system.  It is a virtual book pusher.  Stealthy.  Ninja-like.  I like it!

Books reviewed/mentioned today:
Sonnenblick, Jordan. Notes from the Midnight Driver. New York: Scholastic, 2006. Print.
Murray, Stuart. Vietnam War. New York: DK Pub., 2005. Print.
Gantos, Jack. Dead End in Norvelt. New York: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2011. Print.

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