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Jen Robinson
San Jose, CA
Dedicated to growing joyful learners: bookworms, mathematicians, scientists, artists, + more
Interests: joy of learning, education, children's books, hiking, reading, walking, red sox baseball, wine tasting, mysteries, literacy
Recent Activity
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Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Because I was on vacation last week, there are quite a few links. Topics shared here include #BookLists, #DiverseBooks, #Kidlitopshere, #PreK, #ReadAloud, #STEM, Anna Dewdney Award, children's books for adults, gender identity, growing bookworms, math, parenting, publishing, reading, reading levels, Rick Riordan, screentime, and teaching. I'm also working on another post with more detail from several joy of learning / play-related articles. Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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As for the Charlie and Mouse, they are adorable, wide-eyed, mess-haired, and freckled. They are full of joy, as is the book overall. Charlie and Mouse is an early reader / very early chapter book that is both kid- and parent-friendly. I look forward to future books in the series, and certainly recommend that libraries give this one a look. Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Jen Robinson's Book Page
Oh, I LIKE the copy-editing idea, Charlotte. I'm going to try that when she's older. Though it will be a sad day for my blog when she outgrows picture books. But then, maybe she won't. I haven't :-).
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While this is not a typical milestone on the path to literacy, I've noticed a new behavior on my daughter's part that I thought my readers might appreciate. When new picture books for potential review come to the house, I normally place them on the kitchen table so that I can read them with my daughter. She's become gradually aware that I write about some of the books, but not all of the books, and she has started giving specific feedback. Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Rain by Sam Usher is one of those picture books that one appreciates a little bit more in each reading. It's a lovely little story of a boy and his grandfather on a rainy day. The boy wakes up and desperately wants to go outside to play in the rain. But Granddad asks him to wait for the rain to stop. The boy spends the interminable waiting time reading, looking out the window, and asking Granddad again and again. Granddad, however, is distracted by his apparent attempts to respond to a love letter (hand-written, in this timeless story). Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Vampirina at the Beach is the third book in the Vampirina series, written by Anne Marie Pace and illustrated by LeUyen Pham. Vampirina is a joyful young vampire with fangs and pale skin. In this entertaining picture book, Vampirina and her parents, along with a host of ghoulish friends, go to spend a full moon-lit evening at the beach. Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Topics inclue #BookLists, #DiverseBooks, #Makerspace, #Math, #PictureBooks, #STEM, children's literacy, creativity, Harry Potter, Judy Blume, Kidlitosphere, poetry, raising readers, schools, science fiction, summer reading, and teaching. Continue reading
Posted Apr 14, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Mosquitoes are universal. Ninjas are universally cool. Mosquitoes Don't Bite Ninja's belongs in libraries serving preschoolers. It would make an excellent start-of-summer storytime book. But parents should beware. It may awaken in their children the desire to become ninjas. In my experience, there are worst things. Recommended! Continue reading
Posted Apr 13, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
I would love to have this list for myself, Brenda. I think it was having the blog that made me start keeping the list for my daughter. I wasn't completely consistent - I didn't do it during her first year, and then I did miss some times later when she was small. But we've made it a habit now - that's the trick. We're currently using a paper sheet. The format came from my daughter's kindergarten teacher, and I just kept it up. Hmmm, sounds like there may be a blog post in that. Keeping a list of potential picture book gifts is a great idea, and one that I'm sure your family and friends will benefit from for a long time :-).
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In this relatively brief issue of the #GrowingBookworms newsletter I have four book reviews (picture book and middle grade) and one post with my daughter's latest literacy milestone (making inferences). I also have two posts with links that I shared recently on Twitter. I've had a bit less time for blogging than usual because I've been busy helping my daughter celebrate her 7th birthday. I'll also be taking some time off for her upcoming spring break, and expect to be back with another newsletter in three weeks. Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Duck, Duck, Dinosaur and the Noise at Night is the sequel to Duck, Duck, Dinosaur by Kallie George and Oriol Vidal. Both books feature a family with three siblings: two little ducks, Flap and Feather, and a much bigger dinosaur, Spike. In this installment, Mama Duck tells the siblings that it's time for them to "sleep all by themselves in their very own nest." They are initially proud and "only a little scared." Until a big, scary noise wakes them up, that is. They try hiding from the noise, and running away from the noise, and even scaring the noise. But the noise keeps following them. Sleep is impossible until they figure out just what the noise is. Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Topics this week include #BookLists, #DiverseBooks, #GrowingBookworms, #GrowthMindset, #play, #poetry, #RaisingReaders, #ReadingWithoutWalls, #STEM, autism, economic diversity, games, homework, National Poetry Month, publishing, reading, screens, teaching, and translation. Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Tugboat Bill and the River Rescue by Calista Brill and Tad Carpenter is about a small tugboat named Bill and a rather beat-up barge named Mabel who work in the Hudson River. Bill and Mabel are friends, but they are essentially bullied by larger, newer ships. When the opportunity comes to rescue a kitten, however, it's the small, beat-up boats who really shine. Continue reading
Posted Apr 6, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Mrs. White Rabbit is a creative and unusual picture book that demonstrates a mature sense of humor and adds hitherto unknown depth to the character of Alice in Wonderland's white rabbit. While I will admit that this book isn't quite my own personal cup of tea, my six year old found it hilarious and interesting. And I think that fans of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland will be quite pleased to visit the White Rabbit's home though this book. Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
I'm glad you're still keeping up your blog, even if you aren't able to post very often. It's hard to find the time, but the consistency of those of us who have been here for a long time is, I think, valuable. Thanks again for brightening my day!
Oh, Anamaria, thanks for sharing that link. So interesting to see the similarities and differences in my thoughts on this relative to having a child (BB is 7 so your post totally predates her). It does make me feel old that Leo is 16 now, but I love that you are still reading together. I do imagine that we'll listen to audiobooks together as she gets older. Thanks for taking time to comment. I love that we're still reading each other.
Thanks, Brenda! Yes, we are enjoying reading Harry Potter together very much, especially this third book. Hope you have a wonderful week, too!
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The other day I read a post by Daniel Willingham about the importance of teaching kids to make inferences when they read. Making inferences is something I'm quite experienced at myself (to a fault, and to the tune of many a ruined surprise ending of book or movie). It so happened that a family read aloud session later that day suggested that my daughter is doing just fine in developing this critical reading skill. Continue reading
Posted Apr 3, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Topics in this relatively brief edition include #BookLists, #ReadingAloud, #STEM, college, early childhood education, learning to read, love of books, parenting, play, raising readers, reading, reading choice, and teaching. Continue reading
Posted Mar 31, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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The Most Frightening Story Ever Told is a middle grade novel by Philip Kerr about a boy named Billy Shivers. Billy starts spending time in a small-town bookstore called The Haunted House of Books. Taken under the wing of the store's quirky owner, Mr. Rapscallion, Billy learns about the store, goes on a trip, and helps to run a contest. The contest involves five children (selected by lottery) who will listen to "the scariest story ever told." The winner will be the one who doesn't run screaming from the store. Continue reading
Posted Mar 30, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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In this issue of the #GrowingBookworms newsletter I have four book reviews (picture book and middle grade) and one post about the advantages of reading physical books with kids. I also have two posts with links that I shared recently on Twitter, and one with more detailed quotes and responses to some joy of learning-related articles, all centered around growing bookworms. Continue reading
Posted Mar 29, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Charlotte and the Rock by Stephen W. Martin and Samantha Cotterill is about a girl who wants a pet, but instead is given a large rock. Charlotte tries to make the best of her unusual pet, celebrating the positives (hypoallergenic, good listener), but she can't help noticing that the rock is not good at eating her leftover broccoli from the table. Nor is the rock at all helpful in getting her out of trouble in school. ("You said WHAT ate your homework?") Charlotte adapts, but she never stops wishing that her pet could offer her more affection. A surprise twist at the end delighted me, and is sure to please young readers. Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Topics this week include #BookLists, #DiverseBooks, #GrowingBookworms, #GrowthMindset, #STEM, #SummerReading, autism spectrum, baseball, chapter books, economic diversity, Edgar Awards, Eric Carle, knitting, librarians, literacy programs, new readers, Readergirlz, Scholastic, schools, Sesame Street, teaching, and Women's History Month. Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Book: Horizon Author: Scott Westerfeld Pages: 256 Age Range: 9-12 Horizon is the first of a new seven-book series from Scholastic. Scott Westerfeld wrote this one, and outlined all seven of the books, but other authors will be writing the... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page
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Recently, I've run across a number of articles that all touch on aspects of growing young bookworms. The first is about how kids prefer to read print books, and how research has shown that kids who have access to electronic devices tend to read less (even if the devices have books on them). The second article is a list of ten tips for parents to encourage kids to enjoy reading, written by a youth service librarian. The third is about how and why teachers should read aloud to older students, and the fourth is also aimed at teachers, discouraging the grading of students' independent reading. Each of these articles spoke to me on one level or another, and I hope that you find them useful. Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2017 at Jen Robinson's Book Page