Last week before Thanksgiving break, some of Johnson Elementary School’s oldest and youngest students got together to celebrate something very special – Picture Book Month! All month long, the Johnson Library celebrated picture book months with specific lessons, videos, and blog posts about the importance of picture books. Every day on the blog, a different staff member was highlighted with their favorite picture book in hand. So by the end of November, we were ready to celebrate!
On Tuesday, November 26, Johnson students were invited to come to school dressed as their favorite picture book characters. Many students rose to the challenge with some incredible costumes! We also had many teachers in the picture book spirit, showing off some wonderful picture book costumes. Johnny Appleseed, Chicka-Chicka Boom Boom, Caps for Sale, Mr. Putter and Tabby, The Cat in the Hat, and the Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly (and her fly, of course) were just a few timeless characters to make an appearance!
Tuesday morning at 9 AM, Johnson’s kindergarten and fourth grade students gathered in the cafeteria for a very special Picture Book Celebration. We kicked off the celebration with a teacher costume parade, where teachers marched to music around the cafeteria as students tried to guess their costumes. Do you recognize any of these characters?
Our teacher costumes were so convincing, that every single costume was guessed correctly! After the parade and guessing game, students enjoyed a special video performance of Miss Messham’s favorite picture book, Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus.
Once our video was over, it was time for the most exciting part of our celebration. For two weeks prior to our event, fourth grade students spent day and night practicing their read-aloud skills. Each fourth grade student chose a picture book and practiced reading it aloud. In library class, we asked ourselves – what makes a good read aloud? What makes a story fun to listen to? Students practiced special touches like character voices, engaging questions, and reader volume to make their stories especially interesting. At the Picture Book Celebration, each fourth grader chose two kindergarten buddies to share their picture book. They found a quiet space in the cafeteria and sat down together to read and discuss their book.
I am so proud of our fourth graders, who practiced so hard and did a wonderful job! Their storytelling skills were so impressive that I picked up a few pointers myself. Many students also put time and effort into their funny and thoughtful costumes, which added even more smiles to an already exciting day. Great job, fourth graders! You’ve all got what it takes to be great librarians someday.
After sharing our stories, our celebration came to a close with cookies, juice, and our Staff Favorite Picture Books Animoto video (which you can view here). Thank you so much to all of the students and teachers that participated in our Picture Book Celebration! We had so much fun reading and sharing stories together. I can’t wait to celebrate our favorite picture books again next year!