An Exciting Opportunity for #GRAFenway Classrooms! #GRA17

I am beyond thrilled that Victoria Coe is ready to reveal this exciting contest!

Fenway and the story of how he sees the world is one that is bound to make us laugh but also see our world in a different view: What can happen when we simply change our perspective? If your class is reading FENWAY AND HATTIE for the 2017 Global Read Aloud, tell us what your students have learned about perspective for a
chance to win a class set of Fenway’s second adventure, FENWAY AND HATTIE AND THE EVIL BUNNY GANG, provided by Putnam Young Readers.

To enter, simply fill out this form by November 5th at midnight CST.  One lucky classroom winner will be drawn on November 6th.

Only completed forms, please. One entry per classroom. Winner will be chosen by  November 6th and informed via email. Prize will consist of the winner’s choice of up to 30 hardcover or paperback copies of FENWAY AND HATTIE AND THE EVIL BUNNY GANG by Victoria J. Coe. (Paperback will be available January 2, 2018.)


After the Fires – The #GRA17 Can Help

This morning I am sitting in Napa Valley, California getting ready to share stories from my students.  Coming here, I am once again reminded of what we can do as a community as I see the devastation of the wildfires that have swept this area. All of the kids that have lost their homes, all of the teachers who have lost their homes, their classrooms and are now trying to pick up the pieces and settle back into learning, growing, and being a community.  And one of the ways they are doing that is by participating in the Global Read Aloud.  Our community has classrooms in it that have been directly affected by these wildfires.
And I know that while the world seems like one disaster is hitting us after another, I also know that through the power of coming together, small acts can make a big difference.  So, what can we do to help these teachers and their students?
The big need is money and gift cards right now as people try to pick their lives back together.
To help students and others in the area, go here
To help teachers directly affected, you can donate here
I have seen before what coming together can do to make a change in the world, that is at the core of what this project is.  Here is a chance to live that out if you can.

Enter to Win a Free Skype Visit with Victoria J. Coe! #GRA17 #GRAFenway

Exciting news! Victoria J. Coe will offer a free 30-minute Skype visit to one lucky GRAFenway classroom at the conclusion of the Global Read Aloud. The Skype visit will take place by mutual arrangement between Victoria and the winning teacher. The 30-minute Skype visit will consist of Q&A. For a chance to win, simply complete and submit the entry form below by October 24th at Midnight CST.

Limit: One entry per classroom.

Welcome Water for South Sudan to Global Read Aloud Gives Back #GRA17

I am so excited to give more details on the charity that I have chosen as this year’s partner for Global Read Aloud.  Much like last year, this is a voluntary part of the GRA, where you can choose to raise money for this charity if you would like as part of your experience.

To learn more about WFSS, please read this:

Water for South Sudan was founded in 2003 by former “Lost Boy” of Sudan, Salva Dut in Rochester, NY.  WFSS has been drilling wells in South Sudan since 2005 and has drilled 304 wells as of May, 2017. We have an Operations Center in Wau, South Sudan, managed by our local team. Our Country Directors are also former “Lost Boys” of Sudan, and, like Salva, are dual US-South Sudanese citizens. Our local leadership in South Sudan supports our mission and enables our success in the country.

WFSS currently has four teams in South Sudan – a drilling team, a well rehabilitation team and two hygiene education teams, and owns all of our own drilling equipment and vehicles.WFSS drills new wells in remote rural villages and involves local villagers at every step. WFSS

WFSS drills new wells in remote rural villages and involves local villagers at every step. WFSS aims for sustainability in all we do and empowers local leaders to take ownership of the well and establish local management of the well. We train villagers to maintain the wells, leave spare parts for simple repairs and connect them to supply chains (usually county governments and UNICEF) for larger repairs.

Our new well rehabilitation team, started in 2017, goes back to our older wells to repair cement platforms that have eroded over time. New well platform design and stronger concrete are now leading to longer life and greater sustainability for all of our wells.
Each village that we visit to drill or repair a well also receives hygiene training. Our hygiene education consists of training eight men in each village (four men and four women) to identify hygiene practices in need of improvement. Trainers are educated and can then train others, helping to expand the impact of clean water.

You can learn more at, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Upcoming Events:

Livestream Conversation with Salva & Linda Sue ParkWed, Oct. 11, 10:30 am EST. Sign up with link to livestream will be on our Upcoming Events page soon.
2017-18 Iron Giraffe Challenge – WFSS challenges schools to each raise $1,000 by March 30 to be entered into a drawing to win a visit from Salva Dut. Other prizes include Skype calls with Salva, Linda Sue Park and our Country Directors in South Sudan.
Well sponsorship information for schools can be found here.
Welcome Water for South Sudan!

GRA17 Welcomes Back Write About!


Connecting your readers with authentic writing opportunities is an important part of the Global Read Aloud experience. I’m thrilled to announce that Write About is generously returning to sponsor student writing for each of your classrooms!

Why: Engaged students write MORE…about the books and beyond!

What: A GRA Classroom upgrade coupon for unlimited writing on the NEW Write About ($49.95)!


  1. Register for an account or Sign In on Write About
  2. Complete the GRA Upgrade form to access the coupon code and instructions for completing the upgrade. (for both new AND returning users)
  3. Get your class writing! Start in September for daily writing and use the GRA on Write About Guide to make the most out of the GRA communities during the project.

Thousands of veteran GRA classrooms have used Write About because:

  • Wonderful writing Ideas are included that go along with the books -OR- teachers create their own to spark a range of literature responses
  • Students can publish, read and comment within your own Class -AND- safely connect with other students.

If you haven’t signed in to the NEW Write About yet, I think you are going to be blown away. It is SUPER easy for teachers to set up and really engaging for student writers!

Having a single directory to find Classrooms Who Write and simply being able to click a FOLLOW button to connect your students for GRA is really a game changer.

PS: If your class will benefit (or has in the past) from free Write About access through the partnership and you’d like to support them…. Please share 1 social media post next month by clicking the Writing…Relaunched campaign to get the word out.


Win a Signed Copy of A Long Walk to Water #GRA17

While it is never expected, it is always exciting to me when the authors of the selected books ask how they can be a part of the Global Read Aloud.  This year is doubly exciting, as both Linda Sue Park and Victoria Coe are coming up with wonderful ways that they can connect with all of you (in manageable ways, of course, as we have about two million students signed up this year).

Last year marked the first time, that the Global Read Aloud partnered with a chosen non-profit to direct some GRA good will their way.  Lasy year’s partner, Palms and Souls, ended up receiving more than $8,000 in books to build a community center library for more than 60 kids in Guatemala, it was incredible to see the kids and their smiles as all of their new books were revealed to them.  When choosing a non-profit I wanted to make it meaningful, I wanted any help they received to truly make a huge difference, and I wanted the nonprofit to share a similar story of the GRA; someone saw a problem and decided to do something about it.   And so I am proud to announce that this year’s partner is Water for South Sudan, the nonprofit started by Salva Dut, the man whose story is told in A Long Walk for Water.

While more details will be forthcoming, we are celebrating this partnership with the author of the book, the incredible Linda Sue Park.  She has graciously donated, along with her publisher, twenty-five signed copies of A Long Walk to Water for me to give away.  This contest is open to the world, all you have to do to enter is to leave a comment below.  I will pull twenty-five random winners on the 19th of August and then notify the winners.

So good luck, happy reading, and may this year’s Global Read Aloud once again make a difference to you and to others.


Share Your Resources Here for Global Read Aloud 2017 #GRA17

One of the things I love the must about the GRA is how educators from around the world come together to share the resources they create.  Whether hyper doc, postcard exchange, or slow chat questions, GRA participants know how to share.

However, even with all of the wonderful things being shared, I know many others are missing out on the resources.  So I created a Google spreadsheet, each book has its own tab, where people can add any resources they would like shared.  Please feel free to add to it any free resources you have found or created to it.  Hopefully, this will help us all as we prepare for the project to start October 2nd.  I, for one, cannot wait.

To see the spreadsheet and add to it, please go here.

Slowchat Information for Global Read Aloud 2017 #GRA17

I am always so grateful for all of the fantastic people who step up and help out with all things GRA.  SO thank you to the awesome Beverly Ladd for spearheading the slowchats this year.

You may be wondering what a slowchat is.  Well, it is a Twitter chat meant to last a week.  That means that a class will host the chat for a week and send out questions using a specific hashtag, often posting a new question every day, and then moderating the chat for an entire week.  Why do we love slowchats?  Because we don’t have to worry about having all of our students on Twitter at the same time, it allows for all time zones to participate, as well as for great conversations to unfold at a slower pace.

If you want to be a host, please:

  • Sign up on the Google sheet for the book you are reading.
  • You can choose to co-host with another class if you would like.
  • Please do not sign up for more than one week so that others can have the chance to host as well.
  • Remember your week and then have students prepare questions.
  • You or your class must have a Twitter account to host, but you do not need to have experience with this, have fun, make it your own and make it work for everybody.

If you want to participate:

  • You or your class must have a Twitter account to participate.
  • See the lists of hashtags so you know which one to use.
  • During the week, answer the questions, ask your own and connect.
  • You don’t have to sign up anywhere, just participate when you want.

Where are the sign-up sheets?

That can be found right here.

What will the hashtags be?

The hashtags will be the official hashtags followed by the number of the week, so for example for Wild Robot it would be #GRAWild1, #GRAWild2

The official hashtags are:

Mem Fox #GRAMem

Fenway and Hattie #GRAFenway

The Wild Robot #GRAWild

Long Walk to Water #GRAWater

A Monster Calls #GRAMonster

Any more questions?

Comment here or contact me

Reading Breakdown For #GRA17

As the beginning of the Global Read Aloud 2017 nears, it is time to reveal when to read what.  Thank you for those who helped me break down the books!  Remember; it is okay to fall behind schedule – I do every year – just don’t read ahead.  Also, some schools due to holidays or all year schedules are choosing to start a little later – no big deal – please make it work for you!

The project starts October 2nd and runs until November 10th, 2017.

Fenway and Hattie

Week 1 – Chapters 1-3 (26 pages)
Week 2 – Chapters 4-6 (24 pages)
Week 3 – Chapters 7-9 ( 27 pages)
Week 4 – Chapters 10-12 (23 pages)
Week 5 – Chapters 13-16 (31 pages)
Week 6 – Chapters 17-20 (25 pages)

The Wild Robot

Week 1 – Chapters 1-19

Week 2 – Chapters 20-31

Week 3 – Chapters 32-44

Week 4 – Chapters 45-55

Week 5 – Chapters 56-68

Week 6 – Chapters 69-80

A Long Walk to Water

Week 1 – Chapters 1-3

Week 2 – Chapters 4-6

Week 3 – Chapters 7-9

Week 4 – Chapters 10-12

Week 5 – Chapters 13-15

Week 6 – Chapters 16-18

A Monster Calls – Illustrated or non-illustrated version

Week 1 – Through the chapter called “Three Stories”

Week 2 – Through the chapter called “Understanding”

Week 3 – Through the chapter called “Americans Don’t Get Much Holiday”

Week 4 – Through the chapter called “Could It Be?”

Week 5 – Through the chapter called “100 Years”

Week 6 – Through the end

Mem Fox Picture Books

Week one:

Week two:
 Week four:
Week five:

Mem Fox’s Books Selected for Global Read ALoud 2017 #GRA17

Picture Book Author

Australian author Mem Fox has been a contender for a few years, so I am thrilled to have her be the chosen focus of our picture book study. With her enthralling storytelling, her many books focused on the ordinary and not so ordinary, and the perspective she brings her impact on the Global Read Aloud community promises to be profound.

Week one:

Week two:
 Week four:
Week five: