Interactive Idea Springboard

This category contains 9 posts

The WEIRD series: WEIRD! DARE! TOUGH! by Erin Frankel Illustrated by Paula Heaphy

The WEIRD! series relates a common bullying situation from three different perspectives:  WEIRD! is from the viewpoint of the bully’s target(Luisa); DARE! is from that of the bystander(Jayla); and TOUGH! is from the perspective of the bully, herself(Sam). The bully situation, itself, is absolutely believable.  Sam continually calls Jayla names and puts down how she … Continue reading

WORDS WITH WINGS by Nikki Grimes

Nikki Grimes has become one of my favorite authors over the last three years.  I first discovered her work when the first book in her brilliant young Dyamonde Daniels series appeared as a Division I nominee for the Maud Hart Lovelace Award.  The way she easily slips into the dialogue and behavior of her young … Continue reading

HALF A CHANCE by Cynthia Lord…LOVELACE Nominee 2017-18

Half a Chance is told by Lucy, a tween-age girl who has just moved to a small town in New Hampshire.  Having moved several times before, she is understandably worried about new and unfamiliar places and people–especially finding friends her own age.  Lucy’s new home is situated on a lake and she almost immediately meets … Continue reading

MY BEST FRIEND WILL by Jamie Lowell & Tara Tuchel

My Best Friend Will is a terrific picture book describing the friendship between Jamie and Will.  Jamie and Will are best friends.  The key element to their friendship portrayed in the book is the fact that Will has autism. The book does a fantastic job of explaining autism in a way that is easily understandable to … Continue reading


Love this book!  If you’ve read Arith-me-tickle this is the perfect next step by the same author.  Delightful poems based on classic poetry which have wrapped themselves around math puzzles to be solved.  (If you haven’t read Arith-me-tickle I highly recommend it!) The featured poets include Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Ogden Nash, Langston … Continue reading


 Good Masters!  Sweet Ladies! won the Newberry Medal in 2008.  I am embarrassed to say that it has been sitting on my shelf since I bought it in 2009. Ms. Schlitz has brought together a collection of monologues narrated by 22 separate characters from medieval times.  They are wealthy, poor, tradespeople, servants and lords of the … Continue reading

NOT A STICK by Antoinette Portis

Not A Stick is a little gem of a picture book.  The entire book is about 75 words and illustrated primarily with line drawings.  The story revolves around our (unnamed) main character who is a young pig.  He is continually being questioned about the stick he is carrying:  why is he carrying it, be careful … Continue reading

ARITHMETICKLE by J. Patrick Lewis

If you like Dynamath at school or have ever wanted to try it, then Arithmetickle is for you!  It is a collection of poems that are both fun to read–and fun to solve because each poem is ALSO a clever math puzzle. First you must decipher the actual nature of the problem/puzzle.  Second you must … Continue reading

KIDS TREASURE HUNT: How to find a good book

A teacher or a parent tells you to go read a book.  You wander into the library, see shelf after shelf after shelf of books, books and more books. How are you ever going to find one you might like? You need a treasure map!  Through reading we discover countless treasures in our imaginations and … Continue reading