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Thursday, April 18, 2013


My favorite fourth graders have been begging for another literature circle/novel study. To their delight, it began today with David Adler's picture book biography AMERICA'S CHAMPION SWIMMER: GERTRUDE EDERLE (illustrated by Terry Widener). Engrossed in the story of her 1926 swim across the English Channel, they listed many traits exemplified by her throughout her life: courageous, stubborn, determined, not concerned with whether others thought she could not do something, and numerous others. When I read the definition of RESILIENCE, they understood how their list meshed with the word and especially how Miss Ederle was resilient.

Next, each person got a picture book biography about some other historical figure who demonstrated resiliency in whatever he or she accomplished. The room was silent as they read, looked at author's notes for more facts, and wrote in their journals about how their people were resilient. Tomorrow we will hear about each person. And on Monday, they choose their next novels!

p.s. The variegated dogwoods in front of our house have to be resilient. They are encased in snow and ice all winter. Just when things start to get warm, they get covered again.


  1. a very good word and a very good image to illustrate it. in another month you will see such a transformation.

  2. And I thought our early April snow was evil!