As I typed a reflection of 2014, I realized how many books I read in 2014 that I just loved. Here are 14 of my favorites --- not necessarily published in 2014.
5 Picture Books
Waiting is Not Easy by Mo Willems (2014): It's hard to be patient when you are waiting on a book as fun as this one. Students loved it --- and so did I.
The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires (2014): This book speaks to perseverance and hard work. Sometimes when we have an idea, we have to try and try again.
What Do You Do with an Idea? by Kobi Yamada, Mae Besom (illustrator): Speaking of ideas....have you ever had an idea that just stays with you and won't go away. This book is for you!
The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig, Patrice Barton (illustrator): This book has a beautiful message. First shared with me by Ruth Ayres, I fell in love immediately with this character who goes virtually unnoticed each day until a new friend arrives.
Froodle by Antoinette Portis. This book is fun to read. Who says birds have to chirp? This book reminds us that sometimes things don't have to be the same.
5 Beginning Chapter Book / Middle Grade / YA Books (yes, we could debate my categories)
Dory Fantasmagory (beginning chapter book) by Abby Hanlon (2014): Who knew I'd love this so much? Dory just wants to play with her brother and sister, but they aren't so crazy about that idea. Can Dory find a way to join the fun? The way the story sometimes steps into graphic novel-like scenes is perfectly fun for young readers. Counting down the days until Dory and the Real True Friend comes out 7-7-2015!
Rump: The True Story of Rumplestiltskin by Liesel Shurtliff (2014) Loved. Loved. Loved, Rump. It's always fun to see a fairy tale from another point of view, and this book is delightful. (more about Rump here)
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell (2013): Eleanor and Park is the story of an unlikely friendship that grows into love as these two begin to trust and take care of one another.
A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd (2014): Felicity and her family have moved to Midnight Gulch. Midnight Gulch isn't your ordinary town. It's a town with a story, a little magic, and a terrible curse. (read more here)
One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt (2013): Carley moves in with Murphys after some difficulties with her mom and her mom's boyfriend. The Murphys give her a glimpse at a different life and help her to learn a little about herself. (read more here)
Rethinking Intervention by Shari Frost (2013): Frost makes us rethink our current systems of intervention by considering what students need in the classroom and from the support they receive. (more here)
Reading in the Wild by Donalyn Miller (2013): This book was our #cyberPD choice for 2014. Donalyn shares ways to think about developing readers that read beyond our regular school day. (#cyberPD collection of posts is here)
The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd (2014): This story of a young slave girl, Hetty, and her master's daughter, Sarah. These two girls, nearly the same age, lead very different lives. The story travels across decades as they both try to make sense of their lives and change the world around them. (read more here)
I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai and with Patricia McCormick (2014): If you haven't read this yet, you should. I learned so much about a life so different from the one I know. I'm amazed by Malala's strength and the importance of the message she shares.