December 02, 2010

December 2010

As our calendar turns to December, just a brief reminder that the Sylvan Dell books are available for home and school use. Any student at Peebles can access these books from their home computer for a read -along or read -aloud experience. Don't forget the book quizzes can be found on the book's homepage. There is a quiz for reading and another for math for each story. Great practice for multiple choice testing!

Sylvan Dell also has an online book store for families. Each title is available there along with stuffed animals representing many of the characters.

June 13, 2010

Summertime... and you can still read ebooks online!

Hi, Peebles Families,
I hope you are enjoying your first days of summer break! Whenever you want to hear a great story, remember you can grab your computer and head over to the Sylvan Dell Grant and enjoy an e-book! No, the hardcover books from the Title I parent involvement Grant won't be available, but you can listen and read along to all 55 of those wonderful titles. Two things to remember after you read them: (1) take a few minutes and do the online comprehension checks at the books home page - (right column mom and dad under quizzes) there is also one there for math word problem practice. (2) create a family account at and you can make your ideas on the Sylvan Dell books known too.

The links can be found under the boy holding the stack of books!

Happy Reading!

Mrs. Spohn

May 28, 2010

End of May - and make that 5 New Online books!

Make that list a bit longer. The good folks at Sylvan Dell Publishing have added 5 new books this month. Champ's Story: Dogs Get Cancer Too just went online today! These books are only available online, but you can enjoy them and then make a comment on the PES Voicethread.

May 27, 2010

What a great surprise!!!

Today while a first grader was re-teaching us how to get to our e-book account, we discovered that the great folks at Sylvan Dell have added four new titles! These are available ONLINE only.


May 19, 2010

getting to the Sylvan Dell ebooks...

Go to the Sylvan Dell Books online HERE!!!!

All 50 titles are available to read or listen to ONLINE. Peebles Site License Link:

You can comment about these titles on the Peebles Voicethread:

May 10, 2010

Title I Poetry

We are enjoying our voicethread so much, we decided to do a Title I Poetry blog too! On Friday, May 7th we had a wonderful "Parents, Poems, and Pizza Event" for our Title I families. During that time we performed some poems, read some other poems and finally wrote some poetry with our families. Now we are working to get all those poems voiced on voicethread.

Hope you will visit and listen in! You are welcome to make a comment from your computer. Sign up is free and easy. This is also a moderated thread so all comments are approved by me before they go 'live'.

May 04, 2010

May - a perfect time for an e-book!

Did you know that we have had over 640 hits for our Sylvan Dell ebooks pages? Hope that you and your family have enjoyed some of these stories online. This is truly cutting edge technology that delivers beautiful texts right to your home computer while reinforcing math and science concepts for your child.

We are thrilled to have over 50 comments on our PES voicethread. Your family can sign up for a free voicethread account and your child (or you) can add a comment about one of these titles right from home. Take a few minutes and listen in as our youngest learners practice 'book talks'. Then make one of your own!

I shared the voicethread link with the folks at Sylvan Dell and they said:

  • May 2, 2010
  • Thanks very much for showing me this! I forwarded your email to all of our staff, and everyone agreed they were quite cute. Thanks for making us smile today!


    Erica Beyerl
    School & Library Sales

    Sylvan Dell Publishing
    976 Houston Northcutt Blvd., Suite 3
    Mount Pleasant, SC 29464

The web does make it possible to read to and respond to the greater community!

April 20, 2010

arggh... a bit of Web 2.0 frustration!

Here is the replaced page... (sigh)

After the excitement of a few entries on voicethread, I decided to upgrade to a more secure format for student safety. As I did this I somehow lost the original. So here it is re-constructed above.

We did lose our initial comments, but I am thankful it was only a handful rather than hundreds! We will consider it a learning experience... for learners do make mistakes. As we work together on this little journey of Web 2.0 learning things might not always be perfect... and students and teachers have to give themselves an attitude of "it's okay to make mistakes, thats the way we learn!"

The beauty of the education site, is that it is much more secure and ultimately your child will be able to log in easily and comment. REST assured that this is a fully moderated site, and ALL comments are approved by me before they are posted.

Thanks for your visit!

April 16, 2010

Here is the voicethread in progress. If you have read any of these titles or enjoyed the story as an e-book , you are welcome to leave a comment at Voicethread. You simply click the comment button beneath the photo, and you can either type in your response OR use your microphone to speak about the book.

(see blog entry above for updated link!!!)

We will begin having students discuss their favorite books here soon, so check back!

21st Century Literacy is a rich way for students to share what they are reading and writing!

Happy Reading!

April 15, 2010

Now we are linking to Voicethread...

As students begin reading these wonderful books we will be posting their comments on our Voicethread account. This will 'grow' as we explore how to post both book comments in text and then move to using our voice through the microphone. For now, a few friends have been quoted talking about books they have read.

Look for the link early next week to see and hear about some terrific books!

P.S. We have had a discussion about what makes a good book comment. Our goal is to share something about the book but not the entire story. Students are not able to participate if they have been doing "FAKE READING" . Carrying a book around and looking at the illustrations doesn't help you 'sell' the book to the next reader!

April 13, 2010

First Graders in Title I with first round of Sylvan Dell books

Our Title I First Graders were so excited to be among the first to sign out the wonderful Sylvan Dell Publishing titles. We reminded ourselves that these books can be heard ONLINE or read with mom or dad. These books are loaded with math and science information so enjoy learning vocabulary and wonderful animal facts!
Don't forget the great "Creative Minds" section at the back to extend your child's learning even more.

April 12, 2010

April 12, 2010 - New Books...

Our Peebles Second Graders are thrilled to read the hardcover books that we received from a Title I Parent Involvement Grant. These books from Sylvan Dell Publishing are beautiful hardcover print texts of the popular e-books. All 50 titles are available to read or listen to ONLINE. Peebles Site License Link:
The bonus is that with the purchase of the hardcover books through our Title I Grant, we got an extension of our building online access through the next school year! Part of our grant application included using 21st century tools (like this blog)
In the weeks ahead, our Title I students will be voting for their all time favorite Sylvan Dell title. Check back here weekly as our students will be sharing their thoughts about these titles.

March 29, 2010

Elusive Spring

So far, it hasn't felt much like Spring in this area, but the weather looks promising as April approaches! As you get out and about enjoying your extended Spring Break, help your child notice the signs of new life that you may find in your own neighborhood. In My Backyard will introduce some powerful vocabulary as well as great factual information about creatures that exist with us, but are often not noticed.
Remember that each Sylvan Dell book has a quick online quiz and extensions that families can do together.
Happy Reading , Happy Spring!

March 10, 2010

Two texts in one!

Two texts in one! What's the Difference? is a clever subtraction tale for younger readers AND an information rich book for older readers. From Karaner Blue Butterlies to manatees your youngster is certain to pick up a new fact about endangered species.
A perfect book to tie in to your Earth Day celebrations!

February 25, 2010

Logging in to ebooks...

Here is a direct link for you to log into ebooks for Peebles.

Site License Link:

February 24, 2010

5 Brand New e-books!

February 24, 2010
Sylvan Dell has added 5 new e-books to our Peebles grant!
I just got the notice this morning and took a moment out to enjoy
Panda's Earthquake Escape. I feel certain your family will enjoy this story about two Pandas in a reserve who are frightened during an earthquake. They wander far from home and are missing their routines, their keepers, and the bamboo that is disappearing from the wild.
Lots of great extensions here with information about earthquake magnitude and the Giant Pandas themselves. Very timely with both the earthquake in Puerto Rico and the return of one of the D.C. Pandas to China this month.
Other new titles Felina's New Home, Little Red Bat, What's the Difference? and Newton and Me.
Access these titles from home through your 'access code' that was provided in the fall. If you have misplaced this code, simply email me and I will get it to you quickly!
By the way, we would love to have your family comments on which one you felt was extra-special!

February 05, 2010

HITS! We have HITS!

A Sylvan Dell ‘web traffic’ report indicates that hits have occurred 558 times since September 28, 2009, which shows good usage for the school! This wintery weekend might be the perfect time to share an e-book!

February 03, 2010

Maybe Phil has it all wrong...

Just perhaps the rotund rodent has his calendar mixed up, so I am dreaming of spring! Actually, even in the winter I enjoy looking at the bird feeder and observing those feathered critters. This months Sylvan Dell book , The Best Nest will help your child learn some great bird facts embedded in a retelling of a folk tale.
Hope to hear from you with your comments!

January 14, 2010

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year and already mid way through January! 2010 is already moving quickly. Hope you are getting into the mode of writing 2010, our students and teachers are all practicing it daily and it is becoming second nature.
Our featured book this month is Henry the Impatient Heron. Patience is often hard for youngsters, and they will appreciate the way Henry's legs begin to twitch, his neck begins to itch as he tries to stay still. Finally he learns the secret of patience from the master of the bog. Enjoy the story , your family discussion and then take time to celebrate the strides your child is making patiently learning something new!