The Unnatural Selections Drawing Game

Unnatural Selections Blog Collage 2

Have you ever seen a Hawkodile? Or a Toraffe? What about a Cowaconda? All of these creatures (and more) can be found roaming through the imaginative universe of Unnatural Selections, a picture book by artist Wallace Edwards. To create this book, Professor I.B. Doodling, a traveling artist, took suggestions from schoolchildren to create fantastical hybrid animals. The result is a collection of magnificent beasts that are sure to inspire the imagination. Since your students or children will be full of creative energy after reading Unnatural Selections, here is a simple drawing activity that pairs perfectly […]






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We’re going on a word hunt

We’re going on a word hunt, (we’re going on a word hunt,) We’re going to find some big ones, (we’re going to find some big ones,) I’m not afraid! (I’m not afraid!) This song puts me in mind of summer nights around the campfire after the final s’more has been eaten, when it’s time for scary stories and songs. But we have a twist on it for you today, instead of a bear hunt, we’re going on a word hunt!! We hope this exercise gets kids reading, and gets them to have fun while they’re […]






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We’re Dreaming of Salamanders and Summer

Salamander Rescue by Pamela McDowell and illustrated by Kasia Charko

Winter seems to be sticking around–here on the West Coast we’re up to our ankles in snow (something we’re not used to!). So we’re turning to books about summer to remind us that the cold will end soon.   We’ve got Pamela McDowell‘s Salamander Rescue open right now, reading about Cricket McKay and her animal-saving, environmental-friendly initiatives. Cricket has lived in Waterton all her life, so she is surprised to discover an animal she hasn’t seen before: the long-toed salamander. She finds a band of them migrating from the pond to their hibernation grounds at […]






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Author Feature: Laura Langston

In Plain Sight by Laura Langston

Fifteen-year-old Megan “Cause Queen” Caliente is president of the political science club and likes to make her voice heard. But after the protest she organized on the Las Vegas Strip takes an unexpected turn, she is suddenly wishing she could disappear. When her mother comes to pick her up at the police station, Megan learns, to her horror, that her whole life has been a lie. Her father is a convicted terrorist, responsible for the deaths of more than two hundred people, and her mother has been living under an assumed name for fifteen years. […]






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Author Feature: Nikki Tate

Deadpoint by Nikki Tate

Ayla loves climbing. But she prefers to climb indoors, with all her safety harnesses in place and soft mats to land on. Her climbing partner and best friend, Lissy, is much more adventurous and loves the outdoors. When Lissy starts hanging out with Carlos, the new thrill-seeking guy in town, Ayla wants to keep an eye on her and finds herself tagging along on a weekend climbing trip up Black Dog Mountain. But things go very wrong when Lissy and her dad, the only adult in the group, are badly injured high on the side […]






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Author Feature: Gail Anderson-Dargatz

A Race Against Time by Gail Anderson-Dargatz

#TuesdayTalk with Gail Anderson-Dargatz. Her novel, Race Against Time, is on shelves now! Tell us a bit about your book. My latest Rapid Reads book is called Race Against Time, a Claire Abbott mystery. What was the catalyst for your story? What if you had a vision that something terrible was about to happen? Could you stop it? What if no one believed you? This novel rose out of those questions. If your book is illustrated, what was it like to see your story come alive visually? The book plays with the concept of time. […]






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