Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Mimi Brown - A Guest Blog

I've asked a few of my colleagues to serve as All-en-a-Day's Work "guest bloggers."  Mimi Brown is my first guest.  Mimi is a dear friend who works as a literacy coach in Issaquah, Washington.  I've know Mimi for a quite some time.  Mimi is passionate about her work and many of our conversations center around the work she is doing in her position as a literacy coach... of course, our conversations are peppered with laughter.  She's a good friend and I'm pleased she agreed to write a guest post...  Enjoy!

Here are some of my favorite things about winter:
  • The song, "Baby It's Cold Outside" (Ahh, old-fashioned love songs)
  • Snow Days (I'll take the make-up days in June)
  • Wearing turtlenecks and scarves (Layers are my friend)
  • Watching it snow (And then melt soon after... After all, I live in Washington State)
I recently procured a new winter favorite to add to my list... Recess at 20 Below by Cindy Aillaud. 

I first purchased the book thinking it would be a good anchor text to demonstrate differing schema, but I haven't used it for that purpose yet.  I grabbed it on a day when we had surprise snow flurries.  

I was working in a third grade classroom during a study of essay writing and knew this book would channel the excitement that falling snow produces in our students.  The text helped us investigate various ways to elaborate on a thesis.  We found facts, anecdotes, quotes, and descriptions... just to name a few.  The kids loved the text and found ways to apply it to their own writing.  

Later in the week, I took the book into a fourth grade classroom that was immersed in a unit on Asking Questions.  The length of daylight hours mentioned in the text fascinated the students.  The thought of needing flashlights to go out to recess created a firestorm  of wonderings.  

I can't wait to take it to Kindergarten this week.  I'm sure we'll be able to compare and contrast our temperate Northwestern recesses to those in the frozen Alaskan north!

As I continue to think about the ways to use this book, my friend Patrick comes to mind.  Patrick, you need this book for your photo essay collection... it's a perfect addition to a study.  

I love finding books that are "chameleons," books that lend themselves to so many arenas!

Warm winter reading wishes, 

Elementary LIteracy Coach 
Issaquah, Washington


  1. Thank you for this post. As a fellow literacy coach (in Indiana) I, too, love the "chameleon" books. :)

  2. Baby its cold outside is one of my absolute favorite songs!