Top Reads for Valentine’s Day

I thought that you might like to see my favourite books for Valentine’s Day. I have been busy updating my library and these are my latest purchases. You have just enough time to order them for your littles one’s Valentine gift so don’t delay…

The first is Love from the Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. This book is just adorable.

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This cute book explores what love means: ‘You are the cherry on my cake’

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‘You are the bees knees’

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It’s a small book with lots of sentiments. It would be a lovely gift for a Grandparent either… Just saying…

Click here to purchase Love from The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

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I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld is another heart-warming  book. A real feel good factor. It just warms your hear to read. How wonderful to hear someone telling you that:

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or

‘I wish you more stories than stars’

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It’s one for my top new finds. Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon and The Colour Monster make my current top 3 book purchases. Click here to purchase I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld

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Love Monster is a slightly hairy monster trying to fit in with the cuddly residents of Cutesville. But as it turns out, it’s hard to fit in with the cute and the fluffy when you’re a googly-eyed monster. And so, Love Monster sets out to find someone who will love him just the way he is. His journey is not easy―he looks high, low, and even middle-ish. But as he soon finds out, in the blink of a googly eye, love can find you when you least expect it.

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I won’t spoil the ending for you…!!! It’s a great book to explore how we all need someone to love and that we should never give up on finding it. Click here to purchase Love Monster. 

I hope that you have found a book or two to add to your Valentine collection.

Have fun,

Miss Mernagh

Books for little ones this Christmas​: Primary School edition

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I will be reading this one to my class over the coming weeks. A nice introduction to Winter without the mention of the “C” word!.  It is beautifully illustrated and has an almost vintage feel about it. I have fallen in love…

“Deep in the woods on the coldest day of winter a little boy drops his mitten. And that lost mitten stretches and stretches — and stretches — to provide shelter for many woodland creatures. A Ukrainian folk tale.” Purchase it here. 

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A twist on the classic Gingerbread man tale. Seriously, how cute is the Gingerbread Baby? He stole my heart years ago. I actually purchased this tonight but as a board book this time. I can’t wait to read it to a certain someone!

“Remember how the Gingerbread Boy is eaten by the fox? Well, not this Gingerbread Baby in a delicious twist to a favorite old tale.It all begins when Matti opens the oven too soon and out jumps a cheeky little Gingerbread Bay. He leads Matti’s mother and father, the dog and the cat. And a whole colorful cast of characters on a rollicking chase through the village and into the forest, staying just out of reach, daring them to catch him along the way.But Matti’s not with them. He’s at home in the borders making what turns out to be a gingerbread house into which the Gingerbread Baby runs. Only Matti knows he is safely inside. And readers will too when they look under the lift-the-flap gingerbread house at the end of the story, and there he is!” Purchase it here.

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Please, please purchase this gem of a book if you live in Ireland. I have purchased some as Christmas gifts and have ordered one for my class too. It is so very rare to find a specifically  Irish nature book. The authors have just knocked this one out of the ballpark!!! Incredibly accurate and detailed illustrations. Just enough information and facts to get you started. The Irish Wildlife Trust receive a commission for each book sold. What a great cause. Purchase it here.

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A big shout out to my dear friends Maria, Valeria and Hugo for introducing this to me. I have this on my literacy scheme for school. It’s a great way to open the topic of feelings and emotions. It’s a must for SPHE or indeed any home.

“One day, Colour Monster wakes up feeling very confused. His emotions are all over the place; he feels angry, happy, calm, sad and scared all at once! To help him, a little girl shows him what each feeling means through colour. A gentle exploration of feelings for young and old alike”. Purchase it here.

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Have fun,

Miss Mernagh 🙂

Books for little ones this Christmas: Pre-school edition

One of my absolute favourite gifts to purchase for any child is a book. It’s my “go-to” for all occasions and celebrations. I thought that I’d take a few moments to list a few of my old and new favourites of the past year. There is still plenty of time to order them for the little ones in your lives!

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I am totally obsessed with this book and know it by heart since purchasing it a few month ago. It’s a great tale about respect, friendship and the power of friends coming together for a common goal. It is so well written that it just trips off the tongue. A fantastic story to get even the youngest child to join in. Purchase it here.

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It’s no secret that I am a huge Dr. Seuss Fan. “Wet foot, dry foot. Low foot, high foot…” It’s a great way to introduce opposites. It is chock full of Dr. Seuss rhyming so it’s a great read from cover to cover. Purchase here.

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I stumbled on this cute series at Halloween and made a few purchases. I am looking forward to reading this one in the coming weeks. When I say read, well it’s a word or two per page. It’s pretty much a picture book so you could let your imagination go wild on this one. You get to see them skating, sledding, and making snow angels and helping Duck decorate their Christmas tree. Cute, simple and one theme. Purchase it here. 

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I’ve owned this book for over 15 years. If you have an interest in the story of the Nativity then this is a must. A hilarious retelling from the perspective of the Inn Keeper. He is far from impressed with all of that knocking at his door!! Purchase it here.

Have fun,Miss Mernagh 🙂

Miss Mernagh 🙂

Christmas Stocking Fillers: Storybooks for 5-8yr olds

Here are two amazing Chapter Book Series for you to consider as stocking fillers. Remember, it’s equally as important to read to your child as it is for him/her to read to you. It exposes children to language that is beyond their capacity to read themselves. Modelling reading also acts as a support and encouragement to your child to read.

Junie B. Jones is a fantastic series of Chapter Books to get your littles ones hooked on reading. There are soon many books it this series. I love when you can get a kid hooked on a “series” of books. It takes the guess work our of “what will we read next?”. It’s worth noting that Junie B. Jones is available as box sets too.

“Barbara Park’s New York Times bestselling chapter book series, Junie B. Jones, is a classroom favorite and has been keeping kids laughing—and reading—for more than twenty years. Over 60 million copies in print and now with a bright new look for a new generation!”

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Here is an example of the antics that lay ahead is you purchase/borrow Junie B. Jones:

“Meet the World’s Funniest Kindergartner—Junie B. Jones! In the second Junie B. Jones book, it’s pooey on B-A-B-I-E-S until Junie B. finds out that her new dumb old baby brother is a big fat deal. Her two bestest friends are giving her everything they own just to see him. And guess what else? Maybe she can bring him to school on Pet Day.”

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Click here for a link to Book Depository to see the entire series of books.

Junie B. Jones has they cutest website for her fans! Check out Junie B. Jones by clicking here.

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Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown is another one of my favourite Chapter Books. It your child is not familiar with Flat Stanley it’s imperative that you purchase this book first: Flat Stanley. It explains how Stanley came to be “flat”. All other books can be read in any order of your choosing.

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There are lots of books in the Flat Stanley series with more due to be release. Again, Flat Stanley is available as a box set too. As he’s been around for a while your local library might be a good place to start. Click here to visit book depository to see the entire series.

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Flat Stanley is also available in an easier to read format for younger/emerging readers.

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Flat Stanley is available in the Level 2 “I Can Read!” series:

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Here is a peak inside Level 2 “I Can Read!” series to see if it is a good fit for your child”

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Again, book depository has lots and lots of these available. Click here.

Have fun,

Miss Mernagh 🙂

Summer Reading: The Lighthouse Keeper Series of Books

A love of books is something that I hope to pass on to any child I teach. That being said, the amount of contact time that children have with their class teacher is limited. I hope that through blogging about books that you will know what to look out for on a visit to your local library or to the book shop. Reading to your child or providing books for him/her to read has the potential to influence their lives in such a positive way.

Take a moment to read this poem and ponder just how powerful reading can be!!!

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The more you read,
The more you know.

The more you know,
The smarter you grow.

The smarter you grow,
The stronger your voice,

When speaking your mind
or making your choice.

Here is a really nice series of books that have a summer vibe about them. My class really, really enjoyed The Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch. It is only one from an entire series of books by Ronda and David Armitage. They would make a lovely summer read!

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21729-px310-220664Have fun,

Miss Mernagh 🙂

Maths Lesson for Who Sank the boat?

Who Sank the Boat? is just a fantastic resource for maths and science lessons! It is a no brainer for integrating “prediction” as a comprehension strategy. We follow Building Bridges of Understanding and have termly strategies to teach and revise.

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I integrated “predicting” and Data Handling for this fun opening activity to Who Sank the Boat? In Junior Infants we are asked to:

  • represent and interpret a set of simple mathematical data using real objects, models and pictures
  • sort and classify sets of objects by one criterion
  • match sets, equal and unequal

Firstly, I displayed the prediction chart below:

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Secondly, I asked my pupils to “predict” who might sink the boat. They then completed the following sheet. Because my kiddos are still learning to write I had labels for them to choose from and glue on the line.

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Click here to download Prediction Sheets.

Finally, we recorded our predictions and created a graph using Unifix cubes and larger images of the animals. Click here to download images.

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Have fun,

Miss Mernagh 🙂

Who Sank the Boat?

I am making it my mission of 2014 to source some great stories that will supplement maths/science learning.  This beauty recently arrived in the post and I was chomping at the bit to use it!

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“Beside the sea, there once lived a cow, a donkey, a sheep, a pig, and a tiny little mouse. One warm, sunny morning–for no particular reason–they decided to go for a row in the bay.”Do you know who sank the boat?

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I love the “open ended” way in which the story is presented. Click here to purchase!

Shame that I have already completed my Maths Unit on weight.  It would be a great way to combine weight with sinking & floating. I should jot that down for next year!!!

Have fun,

Miss Mernagh 🙂