Mrs. McGriff's Reading Blog

Happy reading!

April 5, 2011
by Mrs. McGriff
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Wrap it up!

end of tunnelIt is time to end your research report.  You do not want to leave your reader hanging or suffering from whiplash by writing the words “THE END” or just stopping when you run out of facts to share.  The bad news:  endings are hard–at least they are for me.  The good news:  I’ve learned some tricks along the way to help you out!

  • Circle back to the beginning:  Reread your hook and your thesis statement.  Now that you have put the rest of your research into words, where else might your lead point?  Don’t copy it exactly, but echoes from the beginning are a very effective way to end.
  • Give your opinion:  You have read at least one book by this author and learned everything you could about the life behind the writer.  You are now an expert on this writer.  Why would you recommend this writer to your classmates? 
  • Capture the main idea:  Point out the highlights of your research.  Restate  – in a different way — the most important things to understand about your author. 
  • Leave your reader with something to think about:  Craft a strong statement that captures the essense of your author.  Leave your reader with a question to ponder.  Include a powerful quote from your writer about writing or reading or their books. 

Try one of these suggestions to wrap it all up.  Once you have finished the lead, body, and conclusion, get ready to  print.  Before you print, make sure

  • Your paper is double spaced.
  • You have included a heading (McGriff Period#, Your Name)
  • You have crafted a title.  Review the notes on Good Titles in your Writing Handbook. 

Image:  ’Is there anything at the end of+the+tunnel?
http://www.flickr.com/photos/46922409@N00/1419504712
Used with a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 License

January 11, 2011
by Mrs. McGriff
4 Comments

Across the Universe

I am so excited.  Today you–and I–can finally get my hands on Across the Universe by Beth Revis.  Beth is from my home state of NC, and I have been hooked and waiting to read this book every since I read the first chapter posted on the official website. And now I get to help usher this book into the world!  But first, you need to check out the website where you can explore the spaceship Godspeed.  I had to borrow my daughter’s new laptop because our home computer was not playing nice this morning. Not only can you explore different levels of the ship, you can download wallpapers (not on the schoool computers, please) and upload cool avatars (you know, for your blogs).  You never know, something might show up on this blog from it. This ship is like an entire world.  Did you know they even raise animals on it?  The crew lives and dies and raises children to replace them–all enclosed within the walls of the ship.  I’m not sure I’d like that.  They are travelling, but never get to leave. 

You can check out this excusive interview with Beth as she tells a little about the book and herself (hey, she used to be a teacher, too!):

 

If you missed the trailer for Across the Universe the last time I posted it, here it is again:

Doesn’t it sound good?  I know I can’t wait to read it. 

If you are a part of Facebook, join the Facebook fan page.  You can enter a contest with very cool prizes over there. Just send a picture of you with the book. 

I know you want more.  Follw Beth and her adventures as a writer in all the following locations:

Now, go, find a copy of Across the Universe, and READ!  If you can’t get out to a bookstore today, explore the Godspeed at http://www.acrosstheuniversebook.com

OR you can read a 111 page exerpt at io9′s website.  Don’t delay!  These 111 pages will only be up from 11:11 am – 11:11 pm today, 1-11-11. 

What would you do?  Would you go ahead and be frozen for 300 years as you join your parents on a spaceship hurtling across the universe?  Or would you walk right back out the door into life on Earth with other people in your family who love you?

August 15, 2010
by Mrs. McGriff
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Best of my blogs

Three of my favorite YA authors have good news!  A collection of their short stories and musings on the writing process are being published!  You can read their short stories every Monday at the Merry Sisters of Fate blog.  Go now and find out much more.

Looking for just the right word for your writing?  Head over to Books, Boys, and Buzz for some writing advice from YA author Marley Gibson.

I already have my Mockingjay pin and preordered my copy of Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins, but I’m always up for winning more.  You, too, can enter to win by visiting Beth Revis’s blog at Writing It Out.

February 13, 2010
by Mrs. McGriff
0 comments

Interview with Judy Blume

I know, Judy Blume has been around a long time.  I even read her books when I was in middle school.  Readers still enjoy her books today.  How many of you have read Blubber, Deenie, Are You There God?  It’s Me Margaret, or any of the Fudge books?  I thought so.  She’s still around and still writing even though she swears each book will be her last.  Check out these video interviews with her on the Reading Rockets website.