Expanding our Interests

I’ve organized these groups and clubs throughout my teaching career, and wanted to show their description that I provided to staff and families. Try one at school or home! Please follow my website for updates…Starting a “Top Ten” post soon. 🙂

Author Studies

This group will focus on authors/illustrators of our generation, Nadir Nelson, Jeanette Winter and Jacqueline Woodson (or other authors for younger students) that deliver powerful messages in their literature. We will explore their background, inspirations, other works, websites, and create a biography webpage for each of our authors. Discussion of the theme, time periods, and personal connections are a must. I like focusing on a diverse group of authors and illustrators to broaden the children’s cultural awareness…Kadir Nelson is a favorite of mine….Jeanette Winter (author of The Librarian of Basra and Malala and more) is another FANTASTIC author/illustrator who writes about some pretty powerful Middle Eastern events and gives us the opportunity to learn about and empathize for the thousands of people who are affected by war in their OWN country.

 History Detectives

Have you seen these books by Anne Millard and Steve Noon? They are not the most shiny newly published history books, but as I’ve studied these – I was absolutely fascinated by this compilation of time periods, characteristics and key events in such a FUN format. IT sort of reminds me of a “Where’s Waldo” style where the more you study the picture, the more details and quirks you notice about the characters. Seriously, these books are so fun. This particular group will focus on students pinpointing a period in history/major event, and doing research and exploration to deepen their knowledge of this time period/event. They will become familiar with the culture, traditions, lifestyle, politics, and religions. Evidence of their work will be an interactive poster/lapbook depicting different aspects of their event/time period. A simple Internet image search for “lap books” can provide AMAZING examples to showcase student learning.


Please contact Larissa if you would like her to share one of these workshops/programs with your school, library, or small creative writing group! lasantoriello@aol.com

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