4 Amazing 2018 Picture Book Biographies

Last week I read 4 awesome 2018 picture book biographies. If you enjoy picture book biographies as much as I do, you better check out the video below.

I’d love to know what picture book biographies you love. Be sure to let me know in the comments below. I could always use new titles to add to my to-read list. FourPictureBookBiographies.png


Teacher Survival Kit: 5 Books I Couldn’t Teach Without

I’m excited to be a part of this YouTube Teacher Survival Kit collaboration. I had an extremely difficult time coming up with 5 things that I absolutely need to have in order to be successful in school and in life. When I get hung up, I often turn to books. Thinking about 5 books that have shaped me as an educator helped me find a good direction for my video.

Be sure to leave me a comment below and let me know what books have helped you become the person you are today.

Books Discussed in My Video:

The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller

Book Love by Penny Kittle

Still Learning to read by Franki Sibberson and Karen Szymusiak

Nonfiction Craft Lessons by Ralph Fletcher

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen

Check out the other teacher survival kit videos!

Kate the Sleepy Teacher: https://youtu.be/WaqzmYvwG3o

Moira Doman https://youtu.be/CMPy4OVxpOs

Christina Costa: https://youtu.be/JqHns2vzeO8

One Question With Margaret Peterson Haddix

Readers have been captivated by Margaret Peterson Haddix’s Shadow Children for 20 years. That means that some of the first readers of the series are now sharing the books with their own children. How awesome is that? I asked Ms. Haddix why she thinks kids are still falling in love with Among The Hidden and the other books in the Shadow Children series.

You can find her response in the video below.

If you liked that video, you should check out the rest of the videos in my One Question With Mr. Sharp series.

3 Amazing 2018 Graphic Novels + MORE!


I read some pretty awesome books during winter break including 3 fantastic 2018 graphic novels. In the video below, I talk about those books, a middle grade book that will stay in my heart forever, an amazing 2018 chapter book read aloud, and the 2018 picture book that everyone should buy as a graduation present.

(video below)

Here’s video that I made about ten 2018 books that I’m dying to read! It is going to be such an amazing year for kids and books.

Writing About Reading With Katherine Sokolowski

Teaching students to write well about reading is always a struggle for me in the classroom. I asked my friend Katherine Sokolowski to share how she gets her students to write about reading with passion and authenticity. A literary essay for kids isn’t always the answer. I love how Katherine talks about how she has tried many different things before figuring out what her students needed. 

Next week when we go back to school, I am going to try some of the things Katherine talks about with my students. I can’t wait!

video below

If you liked the video with Katherine talking about how she teaches her students how to write about reading, you might also like this video with Candace Fleming sharing tips for kids trying to come up with awesome nonfiction writing topics.

If you’d like to subscribe to my YouTube channel please click the image below to head over to my page. Once you get there, click the subscribe button so that you don’t miss anything. 🙂


My Top 10 Videos of 2017: #5-1

top videos

As I write this post, I sit at 488 YouTube subscribers. At this time last year I had about 100. I’ve been on YouTube fore 6+ years, so it has been pretty crazy to see all the support and love for my channel this year. Thank you to everyone that has subscribed. It means the world to me. My goal when creating videos is to make sure a voice exists on YouTube that promotes reading and writing workshop, a love of reading, and a celebration of amazing children’s books. Excited to see what 2018 will bring!

#5 That Time I Went on an AR Rant

This video sure did stir the pot. I even ran into a kid at Target yesterday that somehow saw this video. Small world, right?

#4 One Question With Dan Santat

It was such a privilege to be able to share this video of Dan Santat sharing why he dedicated his picture book After The Fall to his wife. If you are watching it for the first time, make sure you have facial tissue ready. This one is a tear jerker!

#3 Classroom Library Tour 2017-2018

This was probably my favorite video to make. I love working on my classroom library, and moving from third to fifth grade this school year caused me to put a lot of thought into how my library would change.

#2 Day 2 Setting Up My New Classroom

I think the most popular education videos on YouTube are classroom setup and tour videos. We love getting a look inside other educator’s classrooms.

#1 First Day in My New Classroom

I think what made this video good, was impossible setting up a classroom appears at the beginning. We all feel so overwhelmed, yet we always manage to find a way to get our rooms ready for that first day with students.

A huge thank you to everyone that has watched a video, subscribed to my channel, and shared one of my videos on social media. I’m really looking forward to trying to create 100 videos in 2018!

My Top 10 Videos of 2017: 10-6

Last school year I started consuming a lot more YouTube videos. My students were obsessed with the platform, so I wanted to try and figure things out a little bit more for myself. Any place that my students are excited about creating, is a place I want to try and understand.

When summer hit, I decided to try and up my YouTube game. I’ve watched a bunch of videos on editing, vlogging, and YouTube tips and tricks. It has been fascinating to see how similar the process of creating videos relates to the process of writing.

Below you’ll find my some of my top videos of the year. If you’d like to subscribe to my station click here. I’d love to get to 500 subscribers before the end of the year. 🙂

#10: The Book Whisperer Donalyn Miller Talks About Book Talks

One of the best days of the school year so far was when my friend Donalyn Miller spent the day in my classroom. When the kids went to lunch we sat down and chatted about book talks.

#9 First Look at My New Classroom

This school year I moved from teaching third grade to fifth grade. On the last day of the last school year, I visited my classroom for the first time. It is fun to look back at what my room looked like before I moved in.

#8 Ain’t No Party Like a Classroom Setup Party

Teachers love visiting other classrooms, so many of my classroom setup videos make this list. Looking back, it is crazy to think about how much time we put into our classrooms during our “summer vacation”. We sure do love our students!

#7 Happy Saturday: After The Fall

Dan Santat’s After the Fall is probably the most memorable book that I read in 2017. I love witnessing readers experience the book for the first time. It is truly mind blowing. In this video, I share my excitement for one of my favorite books of 2017.

#6 Dear New Teachers

This is probably my favorite video that I made in 2017. I just hit record on my camera and started talking to teachers that were getting ready to enter the field. I’m so thankful that they chose to join me in this amazing profession.

Thanks for checking out this post and watching my videos. It means the world to me. If you’d like me to explore a certain topic in a video, just leave a comment below and I’ll see what I can do.

I’m taking it pretty easy this week, so I’m not sure when I’ll be back with my Top 5 videos. I’ll make sure the post is done before the end of the calendar year. 🙂

Making The Last Week Before Break Awesome

It is easy to look at the last week before a school break as something to be stressed out about. It isn’t the easiest time for many of our students. I tried to make the most of our last week before break, and I think things turned out pretty darn good. Our pet tortoise had a visitor, we finished an amazing read aloud, our winter party was off the chain, and our I got the coolest gift from a student. Be sure to check out the video below to see just how awesome our week was.

If you liked that video, be sure to check out my other vlogs. I’ve had a blast documenting our school year.

5 Classroom Library Tweaks

For a classroom library to be effective it must be treated as if it is a living organism. A library that doesn’t evolve with your students probably isn’t going to be very effective for very long. My classroom library has changed a ton the first 100 days of the school year (We haven’t actually had 100 days of school, I just like that nice round number). In the video below I share 5 ways in which the library has changed based on the needs of my readers.

Below you’ll find my classroom library tour video from the start of the school year.

I’d love to know how your classroom/school library has changed so far during the school year. Please let me know in the comments below!