Wolf In Snow Review

The newest Caldecott winner, Wolf in the Snow,  is a wonderful visual narrative that uses a variety of visual image to depict the story of a young girl lost in the snow and helped by wolves to return home safely.  The book is a traditional home-away-home narrative that depicts the adventures and turmoils of a little girl that wanders out in the snow. The opening of the book has several pages of illustrations that appear before the title page - an interesting thing to point out to young readers! In addition there is an opening and closing image that depicts the family through the portal of a living room window. This portal serves to open the narrative and come the story.  Delightful images in watercolor and ink create a lovely picturebook worth sharing with young readers. Here are some reviews of the book on Goodreads Some information about the Author-Illustrator: Matthew Cordell  is the Caldecott award-winn

Top Ten Postmodern Picturebooks

Top Ten List: Favorite Postmodern Picturebooks Frank Serafini (Originally published on the Nerdy Book Club Blog) When I started teaching children’s literature, I was drawn to picturebooks, in particular a weird set of books that I came to know by the label “postmodern picturebooks.” What is interesting about postmodern picturebooks is not necessarily what they are , but what they can do for readers and literacy educators. Postmodern picturebooks invite students to navigate non-linear structures and attend to the various symbolic representations, literary codes and conventions in order to make sense of the complexities inherent in these texts. Postmodern picturebooks distance readers from text, often frustrating traditional reading expectations and practices, and position readers in more active, interpretive roles forcing them to utilize a variety of interpretive strategies in order to make sense of these complex texts. Postmodern picturebooks often contain non-linear plots, polyphonic

Best of Frank Serafini: Rethinking Comprehension

I would like teachers to focus their attention on comprehending , not comprehension . Comprehending is an action verb, connoting a process, whereas comprehension is a noun, suggesting a thing or commodity. Too often our instruction, assessments and classroom discussions focus on some amount of knowledge or attribute that can be measured or carried away from a reading event. I would like to see teachers focus on the process of making sense, not simply the residuals of reading. To offer a definition, I see comprehending as a process of actively constructing meaning in transaction with texts in a particular social context . This definition, which was constructed through my own research and experiences, the writings of various reading and literary theorists and reading researchers, including Louise Rosenblatt, Frank Smith, David Pearson, Kathleen McCormick, Allan Luke, and Robert Scholes, will provide the foundation for the lessons contained throughout this book. I believe that reading, na

Best of Frank Serafini: Assessment Windows

I have used the term “windows,” as many other educators have before me, to describe the assessment instruments used to generate information about the students in my class. I chose the term windows because it describes the importance of observation and the limited scope of any one assessment technique. Teachers “look through” these assessment windows at their students during actual literacy events. These assessments are observational guides, designed to hone teachers powers of observation and make their assessments more meaningful. There is no single window, no single assessment, that provides access to the complete child. In other words, each window reveals information about a child as much as it conceals information. Each assessment window calls forth different aspects of a child’s behaviors, abilities and dispositions. It is only through the use of a variety of assessment windows that a more extensive understanding of a child’s literate abilities emerges. When through a window, we of