I mentioned in an earlier post I was reading Inside Out and Back again by Thanhha Lai. It was published in 2011 and has been in our library for a while so maybe some of you have read it already.
Today is the first day of the a holiday observed by Muslim people called Ramadan. This holiday lasts one lunar month – which means it starts right after the new moon and goes until the next new moon. During this month, people observing the holiday will fast, which means they do not eat anything from dawn until dusk. The Arabic word for this time is sawm.
Because a lunar calendar follows the cycle of the moon, Ramadan falls on a different day each year. This year it happens during the spring, but each year it will get a little bit earlier so sometimes it will happen in the winter, fall or summer.
A new book we added to our library recently is called The Gift of Ramadan and it is a story of a young girl, Sophia, during the month of Ramadan as she practices fasting for the first time.
One of my favourite books to read on Earth Day is The Water Walker written and illustrated by Joanne Robertson.
It is a story about an Ojibwe grandmother (Nokomis) and her love for water (Nibi). She organizes people to walk from all four oceans and around the Great Lakes to Lake Superior. There are Ojibwe words throughout the story, which is an Indigenous language that is centred around the Great Lakes homeland of the Ojibwe people.
The story is inspired by the Mother Earth Water Walk, which you can read more about by clicking here.
What are some things you can do to protect our water and make sure it stays clean for ourselves and the future?
Since it’s harder to access physical books now with school and public libraries closed, there are now some more options to listen to audio books.
Audible is providing free access to children’s books. These books can be streamed on a desktop, laptop, phone or tablet and are available in 6 languages.
Another very popular author in the Oppenheimer library is Oliver Jeffers.
Oliver Jeffers does the illustrations for his books (and does really cool art outside of book illustrations!) too.
Here is a video of one of his most popular books being read, The Day the Crayons quit:
What’s your favourite colour of crayon? Can you tell someone in your home 5 things that are that colour? Can you find 5 things in your home that are that colour? 10 things?
In our library, some of the MOST popular books are by author and illustrator Mo Willems – Elephant and Piggie, the Pidgeon and Knuffle Bunny have lots of fans at Oppenheimer.
While everyone is at home, Mo Willems has started a series of videos, “Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems”. Here’s the first one from March 16th:
You can see the rest of them (15 in all!) at this link: Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems!
On March 21st it was the vernal equinox, also known as the first day of spring! This is a day when the amount of daylight is equal to the amount of darkness.
There are a few different celebrations that happen around spring time. For people from the Jewish culture, it is a time when Passover is celebrated. Here is a short story about this holiday:
One thing I really like about this story, is that even though I don’t celebrate Passover, I can relate to the feelings of excitement in the story! Are there any things you notice in the story that are similar to things you do at home with your family around holidays you celebrate?
Another celebration that happens in Spring is Easter – which is the reason for the long weekend (4 days!) we have coming up. One of my favourite things to do around Easter is to dye eggs. Here’s a picture of some eggs I dyed a couple years back and saved as decorations:
I used natural substances to dye the eggs: turmeric for yellow, beets for pink, and purple cabbage for turquoise/blue (my favourite one, so cool!). Here is a video that has instructions for how you can dye eggs at home (it does require using the stove, so you would need help from an adult):
You can use hard boiled ones if you don’t want to keep them (and have a fun, colourful snack!) or you can blow out the inside so they will last longer (but this makes them very delicate!).
Are there any other special occasions you and your family celebrate in the spring time? I hope everyone has a joyful long weekend with your family!
Hello to all the students and families at Oppenheimer! I miss seeing all your faces and hearing about what books you’ve been reading.
I have been meaning to start up a library blog, and now this seems like a perfect time! I will be posting activities you can do with your family, book news and reviews and more!
Please leave a comment to let me know what you’ve been reading lately!
I recently finished an excellent graphic novel called Sheets by Brenna Thummler that I hope to add to our library collection (I borrowed it from Vancouver Public Library before they closed). The story is about 13 year old Marjorie who is in charge of her family’s laundry business, and her interactions with a friendly young ghost named Wendell who turns out not as helpful as he intends for Marjorie.
I’ve just started reading Inside Out and Back again by Thanna Lai, which is about a young Vietnamese girl moving to the United States to escape the Vietnam War. The book is written in free verse poetry and I thought this would be a good time to read this book since April is Poetry Month. Check back to see me share my thoughts on the book!