Graphic Novels Are Amazing!!!

Third grade library classes have been learning about the benefits of reading graphic novels. Graphic novels help students build vocabulary, improve comprehension, and learn about story elements. Readers are also motivated to read more when they have access to graphic novels and comics. Graphic novels require readers to pay attention to both the illustrations and the text. Readers also infer and make connections as they read graphic novels.

Students watched part of this video from Capstone, which shows how graphic novels are created.

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has created a resource for parents that explains how graphic novels can help your children become better readers.

free comic book day

May 7th is Free Comic Book Day. Visit a local comic book store and receive free comic books.



Mark your calendars for the Maine Comics Arts Festival on Saturday, June 4th at the Portland Public Library. It’s free, and it’s a great family event.

Book Talks by Mr. Carter’s Students

Mr. Carter’s class recently celebrated World Read Aloud Day by connecting with a class in Ecuador. Students shared books that Mr. Carter had read aloud this year. The students wrote and recited book talks for each read aloud. You can see videos of the students’ book talks below.


Iqbal book talk by Anna and Sloane

A Long Walk to Water book talk by Chance

Fish in a Tree book talk by Maddy

Freak the Mighty book talk by Max

Safe Passage Book Donations

A group of Falmouth High School students, Mr. Carter and Mrs. Bachman recently traveled to Guatemala to work with Safe Passage. The Safe Passage school library is in need of books published in Spanish.

Here is the link to a list of books requested by the Safe Passage school librarian.

If you are interested in donating a book, you may order it online and send it to FES. Mr. Carter or Mrs. Potter will make sure the book is delivered to Safe Passage.


2016 Mock Caldecott and Mock Newbery Winners

All students in grades K-5 participated in the FES Mock Caldecott program at Falmouth Elementary School. Students read 8 picture books that are eligible for the 2016 Caldecott Medal and focused on the illustrations and the artists’ techniques.

Students voted for the book they thought had the best illustrations.

The winner of the 2016 FES Mock Caldecott Award is…

trombone shorty pb

Trombone Shorty
illustrated by Bryan Collier
written by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews
Abrams Books for Young Readers

There were two Honor Books:

the night world

The Night World 
by Mordicai Gerstein
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

the whisper

The Whisper 
by Pamelia Zagarenski
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers

 Fourth and fifth grade students in the FES Mock Newbery Book Club voted for the book they thought were “distinguished.”

The winner of the 2016 FES Mock Newbery Award is…

war that saved

The War That Saved My Life
by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

Three books received Mock Newbery Honors:


Fish in a Tree
by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

paper things

Paper Things 
by Jennifer Richard Jacobson

roller girl

Roller Girl
by Victoria Jamieson

Visit the Mock Newbery Book Club site for more to see the entire reading list.


The actual Caldecott Medal and Newbery Medal will be announced in Boston at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, January 11, 2016. The announcements will be streamed lived online.

It’s November…It’s Picture Book Month!

PB month

It’s Picture Book Month! All month we’ve been celebrating picture books at Falmouth Elementary School.

Mrs. Taylor created a lovely art display featuring favorite picture books from FES teachers.

the night world

Mrs. Wiberg’s 3rd grade students had the opportunity to read The Night World with Mrs. Amolo’s 3rd grade library classes in Georgia via Skype. In addition to celebrating Picture Book Month, the students discussed the art in the book for the Mock Caldecott.

Last week Mrs. Canty’s class and Ms. Burt’s class took part in a Picture Book Smackdown via Google Hangouts. Students connected with author Laurie Ann Thompson and students from Georgia, Texas, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania. Special thanks to school librarian, Andy Plemmons, from Athens, Georgia for organizing the Picture Book Smackdown for the 3rd year!

Fifth grade students in Miss Wheeler’s class created special Picture Book Month Certificates and shared their favorite picture books with their Kindergarten buddies.