Summer listening

Posted: June 15, 2017 in Uncategorized

This summer if you find yourself with some time on your hands, consider listening to a fabulous podcast series called “The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel.” I know I am going to start listening!

The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel is a scripted podcast for middle grade kids, performed by middle grade kids. It is a fun, high-quality, serial mystery that can be described as Goonies meets Spy Kids meets Stranger Things for 8-12 year olds. It was voted as one of the top 50 podcasts of 2016 by The Guardian, and was recently honored as a Peabody award winner.”

Thank you to all of our students who added to our Favorite Books of 2016-2017 lists this year!

When I asked students during their book browse classes this week to consider adding the title and author of their favorite book they read this year I was blown away by their willingness and ease in choosing their favorite. Please continue to read over the summer, and I look forward to more reading adventures next school year.

Here are each grade’s book posts in Padlet:

Grade 6

Grade 7

Grade 8

Join us this March and April as we read Jordan Romero’s inspirational memoir about summiting the seven tallest peaks on each continent.

If you’re not quite sure about the book, just read a few pages and see if it’s for you. We have two really great activities to go along with the book:  a trip to University of Maine’s climbing wall, and a Skype with Jordan!

Download the flyer and find out what else is happening in our Library this spring.

I went to bed last night resigned to the fact that I’ve caught the head cold that so many of you have been bravely battling for the past few weeks. The itchy, scratchy throat, watery eyes, and soon-to-be runny nose is just a fact of life, particularly when we spend so much of the day together at school. How grateful was I when my phone rang while I was having my coffee this morning to hear Dr. Webb announce that today there would be no school. Snow day! Or in this case, ice day!  Don’t get me wrong–I love going to school every day, but today, not feeling 100% with the chance to get cozy on our couch and finish a great book by one of my favorite authors, was just a wonderful surprise!

Raymie Nightingale by Kate DiCamillo brings three girls together when they meet at Ida Nee’s baton twirling class one hot summer day in Florida. Each girl, Raymie, Beverly, and Louisiana, is at Ida’s for very different reasons, and although they aren’t aware of it at the beginning of the story, they have more in common than they realize. Beware though…this story might cause you laugh out loud as you read one page, cry the next, and will most definitely draw you in as the three set out on a mission of tremendous importance.

Chester, our cat, loves a good book too!

Chester, our cat, loves a good book too!

masters-of-disguise-coverWe’re thrilled to announce that we will be reading another fascinating nonfiction book by Rebecca Johnson during the month of January. The book, Masters of Disguise: Amazing animal tricksters, reminds us how truly incredible the animal world is.

Students will have an opportunity to answer a few trivia questions for each chapter, giving all students a chance to win a gift card each week.

And to add to the excitement, Rebecca will be skyping with us on Thursday, January 19th in the Library!

Download the flyer for more information.

When life gets tough…

Posted: December 8, 2016 in Reading

crenshawDid you have an imaginary friend when you were little? If you did, maybe that friend is still with you from time to time? The main character, Jackson, in the story Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate only vaguely remembers his imaginary friend who first appeared when he was a little boy–the first time his family fell on hard times. Now, there is no doubt his family is in trouble again, and Crenshaw reappears just when Jackson needs support the most.


Question? What would be your idea of a perfect imaginary friend? Reply to this post and join in on the conversation!


seventh-most-important-thingWe are excited to announce that every student and faculty member at James F. Doughty School will receive a copy of our fall discussion book, The Seventh Most Important Thing by Shelley Pearsall, as a gift from our school. We pride ourselves on being a school of readers, and after hosting numerous book discussion opportunities and author Skypes throughout the years, we are so fortunate to have the chance to share this beautiful story with everyone in our building. Thanks to Shelley Pearsall’s generous offer of donating three free Skype sessions, each grade will have the opportunity to meet Shelley and discuss the book during the school day on December 2nd.

Here are some important dates relating to the book:

  • 11/7 “Tour” the world’s most famous museums, 2:30-4:00
  • 11/9 Listen to the music, see some shows, and sample some foods from 1963 2:30-4:00
  • 11/16 Make art from recycled materials, 2:30-4:00
  • 11/17-18 and 12/1-2 Students and faculty are encouraged to bring in or make an object that represents them to hang on our tree in the Library
  • 12/2 Grade 6, 7 & 8 students Skype and discuss the book with author Shelley Pearsall

Thank you to many of our 6th graders for creating fabulous book review podcasts!

Here’s a small sample of what’s to come in our soon-to-be new PODCAST section.

Top Secret

Play Evan’s book review podcast

A great and terrible beauty

Play Carly’s book review podcast

Land of stories Enchantress returns

Play Cole’s book review podcast

Comic Squad

Play Seth and Brady’s book review podcast

April is National Poetry Month

Be part of the JFD Library Poetry Podcast effort this year!  Browse through our library’s diverse poetry collection, find a favorite, record yourself reading aloud in Garageband, and have your recording posted here, to Readingrocks.

Here’s my attempt! (click on the image)



JFDS Library News March 2016 thumbnailJoin us for some fun during March, April, May and June in the Library!

Take a minute to download this flyer and then mark your calendars for the activities that interest you!




March is going to be filled with MAGIC! Don’t miss getting your hands on a copy of The Iron Trial at our library.

There will be after school discussions, computer gaming, and hopefully a Skype with author Holly Black!

From the Magisterium website: “Most kids would do anything to pass the Iron Trial. Not Callum Hunt. He wants to fail.

All his life, Call has been warned by his father to stay away from magic. If he succeeds at the Iron Trial and is admitted into the Magisterium, he is sure it can only mean bad things for him.

So he tries his best to do his worst—and fails at failing.

Now the Magisterium awaits him. It’s a place that’s both sensational and sinister, with dark ties to his past and a twisty path to his future.

The Iron Trial is just the beginning, for the biggest test is still to come . . .”

Read more about The Iron Trial here.

Here’s my choice!

<p><a href=”″>I_am_Malala_360p</a&gt; from <a href=”″>Lori Patterson</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

How Cool is This? Read Across the U.S.

Posted: January 31, 2016 in Reading

Thanks to our very own Mrs. Kennedy for sharing this infographic!

Use Atriuum to find out which of these young adult titles we have in the library.

Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 6.31.45 PM

Click on the image above to see the entire list!

Here are a few photos of our Skype, on January 5th, with Terry Lynn Johnson, author of Ice Dogs. Terry entertained our crowd of 170+ students and faculty with stories of her mushing days, as well as the highs and lows of being an author!

The photo at the top is Terry’s first published article, and below Terry demonstrates the position of each dog on the line using stuffed huskies!

JFDS Ice Dogs Skype Jan 2016 TerryJFDS Library skype Ice Dogs Jan 2016

What are we reading after I am Malala you ask?jacket

We’ve chosen another Maine Student Book Award nominee from this year’s list, Ice Dogs, by Terry Lynn Johnston. I will have copies available in mid-December.

Here are some details about the book:

  • the main characters are 14-year-olds Victoria, a dog sled racer, and Chris, who she rescues while out mushing
  • it is a story of survival and friendship, and is a nail-biting adventure!

READ more about the book HERE.