OCPS Teacher Carrie Merritt's Read Aloud Series

OCEAN CITY, NJ (June 16, 2020) - Follow along as Ocean City Primary School 1st Grade Teacher, Carrie Merritt, reads stories for school students! 

DAY 59

Hi Readers. Let’s read together one more time. To my OCPS Reading Fans: I’m sending you off with a beach book. May you have many happy days on the beach this summer! Thank you to all the readers from OCNJ and around the US and World that have followed along during this Remote Learning Read Aloud Series. I have truly enjoyed having the opportunity to share books with you and help grow a love of reading TOGETHER. I’m grateful for the opportunities I have had to try and make each of you smile and laugh. I’m grateful for the opportunity I had to use my brain and see just how creative I could get. I am grateful that I got to wear costumes for 59 days. I am GRATEFUL that I had the opportunity to connect with sooooo many of you through books. I’m grateful to my family for helping me stick to this reading streak and HELPING me more than anyone can understand. Reading brings us together. I will miss making these read alouds and I will miss interacting with each of you. Thank you readers for sticking with me. Much love and happy reading! (P.S. There might just be an occasional pop up read aloud as part of Ms. Merritt’s Summer Reading Series!)

DAY 58

Hi Readers! It’s hard to believe but the school year is coming to an end. We are embarking on the final 2 read alouds of the remote learning experience. Today’s choice, Eric’s Big Day, celebrates a sport I love—BIKING! Bicycling is great for the body, mind and it is just FUN! My nephew, Max, has grown to love cycling too. Today, he is my costar. I love to ride my bicycle, I love to ride my bicycle. I hope this book encourages you to ride your bicycle AND read!

DAY 57

Hi Readers and Happy Friday! Read Aloud 57 takes a special turn today! Today, the 2019-2020 Merritt Monkeys costar as narraters in “I Must Have Bobo”. Thank you Merritt Monkeys for being MY bunch. This year turned out different than most. Yet, we still managed to build an awesome family. I admire each of you and your families. I am grateful that you are MY bunch. This class will forever hold an EXTRA special place in my heart. Please remember: Once a Monkey — Always a Monkey! With Love, the Biggest Monkey—Ms. Merritt

DAY 56

Hi Readers! Happy Thursday! Today’s book choice is Harriet Gets Carried Away. Harriet LOVES costumes! She wears them all the time! Sometimes, people think Harriet gets carried away! I certainly can relate to Harriet! Harriet Gets Carried Away highlights the power of using your imagination. When reading this book with me, you are going to have to use your imagination as well. For this read aloud I really used my imagination for the props and scenery. What creative, imaginative journeys can your mind take you on today? Happy reading!

DAY 55

Hi Readers. As you know the school year (albeit virtual and remote) is winding down. Part of the mission of sharing a read aloud for each of the 55 School Days (so far) was to continue to grow, facilitate and encourage a love for reading in each of my students. ...and it turns out students throughout Ocean City and around the country! When my own niece Violet asked to “star” in a read aloud with me, the immediate answer was YES. Violet’s love of reading and books at the age of 5 makes me happy and proud (as an aunt and educator). I hope some of the books during this read aloud series have helped create, build or stoke the love for reading and books for children of all ages! A giant thank you to my sweet little Vi...thanks for flying and reading with me!

DAY 54

Hi Readers! Read Aloud 54 takes us to B.J.Novak’s, The Book With No Pictures! Today, you will notice I have a little help from my Big Sister. My sis has been a part of my silliness forever...so I thought she should join me in a silly Read Aloud! I hope you enjoy the Book With No Pictures. Make sure you get the adults in your life to help you read it! I promise you will enjoy making them be silly too! Happy Reading.

DAY 53

Hey Readers! Welcome back for the final FULL week of our read aloud together time! Today’s choice is Oh, No! Oh, No! is written by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann. The animals learn to watch out for a giant hole! ...but will they feel bad for the very hungry tiger?! Happy Reading!

DAY 52

Happy Friday Readers! Read Aloud 52 is all about some Friday silliness. The Three Ninja Pigs, written by Corey Rosen Schwartz and illustrated by Dan Santat, is a super fun twist on the traditional story of the Three Little Pigs. It is fair to say that I had fun making this one! Thanks Max Richter for choosing this book for me. Have a great weekend and see you Monday! Happy Reading!

DAY 51

Hi Readers! Welcome back for another read aloud! Read Aloud 51 is “The Loudest Roar” written and illustrated by Thomas Taylor. Today you will meet Clovis. Clovis is a cute little tiger with a “Roaring” problem. Clovis needs to learn a lesson about cooperation and consideration. A good lesson for us all! Happy Reading! Roar!

DAY 50

Hi Readers and Runners! Happy Global Running Day! Today is our 50th Read Aloud since moving to remote teaching and learning. Readers, thank you for sticking with me for each of the 50 Books. 50 is quite a streak of reading! Today we celebrate reading and running! Today’s book selection is written by a man who chases dreams and likes “streaks” and challenges. “Dream Big~A True Story of Courage and Determination” is written by Dave McGillivray. Dave is the race director of the famed Boston Marathon. His book seemed like the perfect choice to celebrate #globalrunningday and our 50th book together! The message of “Dream Big” is meaningful. Happy reading, happy running and don’t forget to Dream Big! Please look for the special note to the Merritt Monkeys from Mr. McGillivray himself! Will you accept his challenge?!

DAY 49

Hello Readers. Today as we reach read aloud 49, we’ve been together for many days. The purpose of each read aloud during this remote learning experience has been to keep a connection with each of my, very special, little people. Our little people are living during a period in which they probably do not understand things that are going on around them. I hope these silly, goofy, read alouds bring a smile and some comfort when a little one is feeling a bit of unease. So, to you, my little people I am here to share a smile, a virtual hug and a silly book. I hope you enjoy Oliver Jeffers “The Incredible Book Eating Boy”.

DAY 48

Happy Monday Readers. This week we celebrate Global Running Day. Today’s read aloud is a story about courage, being fearless, standing up for each other and running. I hope we all find a little of the fearlessness that Kathrine Switzer showed and we stand up for what is right.

DAY 47

Happy Friday Readers! Read Aloud 47 is the concluding chapters (7-13) of the chapter book “The Story of Diva and Flea”. This chapter book is written by Mo! If you missed yesterday’s read aloud you might want to tune in to that first. Again, today, there is less acting and more reading. Hope you have enjoyed this change in style of book. Au Revoir for now. See you next week!

DAY 46

Hi Readers! Back for another read aloud...Number 46 The Story of Diva and Flea. This book selection is a bit of a different choice. The Story of Diva and Flea is a chapter book written by Mo Willems and illustrated by Tony DiTerlizzi. Because it is a chapter book you will notice some differences in the reading today: 1. This will be a two day read aloud (Chapters 1-6 today) and (Chapters 7-13) tomorrow. 2. It is LONGER than usual. 3.There is not much acting just lots of reading. I hope you enjoy the beginning chapters (adventures) of Diva and Flea. Be sure to tune back in tomorrow for the concluding chapters. Happy Reading.

DAY 45

Readers!!!!!!! YOU CANNOT MISS READ ALOUD 45 — WHAT ABOUT WORMS!? Mo Willems convinced Ryan T. Higgins to write a book for the Mo Willems, Elephant and Piggie Like Reading Series. You know I love Mo! I bet you know I love Ryan! This book is beyond silly—which is precisely why you must read it!

DAY 44

Hi Readers! Hope you enjoyed your long weekend! Welcome back for some more reading together! Today’s choice is Truman. Truman is a sweet little turtle who finds a big adventure! Truman also enjoys donuts! I got to enjoy some of OCNJ’s yummiest Dot’s Donuts in the making of this read aloud! I hope you enjoy Truman written by Jean Reidy and illustrated by Lucy Ruth Cummins.

DAY 43

Happy Friday Readers! Today is read aloud number 43 on our journey! Today’s choice is The Book Hog, written and illustrated by Greg Pizzoli. The Book Hog loves, loves, loves books...there is just one problem. Read with me to discover The Book Hog’s problem and how it is solved. Look for a couple special Ocean City stops in this book. Also, a giant thank you to Ocean City Free Public Library Director, Karen Mahar, for joining me in the Book Hog! Happy Long Weekend—See you all Tuesday! I hope you love books as much as the Book Hog!

DAY 42

Hi Readers! Welcome back for read aloud 42. Today’s read aloud is written and illustrated by a personal and class favorite, Eric Barclay. Sheep Dog and Sheep Sheep are a funny duo! Watch for their silly antics throughout the book! Can you find the irony throughout this book? Have fun getting to know Sheep Dog and Sheep Sheep! Happy Reading! (PS this was filmed in some major wind conditions!!! Hence, all the voiceovers!)

DAY 41

Hi Readers! Read Aloud 41 takes an imaginative and magical twist! Sophie Johnson is a Unicorn Expert...except for she is so busy she sometimes misses the magic! Enjoy reading this colorful and creative book! What will you turn into a unicorn? Have a magical day!!

DAY 40

Hey Readers! We have gone silly today. I would like to introduce you to Mr. Nogginbody! Read Aloud 40, Mr. Nogginbody Gets a Hammer, is written and illustrator by famed children’s author David Shannon. This silly book made me chuckle...I hope it makes you chuckle too! I think David Shannon really wants you to use your noggin!! Happy Reading!

DAY 39

Happy Monday Readers! Starting off another week of read alouds with — Read Aloud 39 — Bear Came Along. OCPS friends, as island dwellers we are lucky to be surrounded by water. In Bear Came Along, bear and friends learn about the joys of being on and near the water. Being in the open water is my favorite places to be! I hope you enjoy this read aloud “beary” much! Have an awesome week and happy reading!

DAY 38

Cluck, cluck, cluck and Hello Readers! It’s National Dance Like A Chicken Day! In honor of this important holiday, lets celebrate with a chicken themed book—Chicken in Space—written by Adam Lehrhaupt and illustrated by Shahar Kobe’s. A giant shout out (or cluck) to my OCPS friend, Mrs. Porter and her real, live chickens for joining me in Read Aloud 38!! Hope this book makes you want to shake a tail feather!!!! Happy reading, clucking and chicken dancing! (Also, a giant thank you to the Schweim family for sending me this book and keeping read aloud time fresh for all the readers out there!) Hope you enjoy this egg-cellent read!

DAY 37

Hi Readers! Happy Wednesday! Read Aloud 37 introduces us to Tiny T. Rex and his Dino friend Pointy (you are going to have to use your imagination with this character—as my dog Bolt really wanted to be in another book!). Tiny has a hard time hugging with his short little arms...Hopefully, Tiny and I will both learn to be better huggers after reading! I hope you enjoy Tiny T. Rex and the Impossible Hug by Jonathan Stutzman and Illustrated by Jay Fleck.

DAY 36

Hi Readers! Read aloud 36 is here! This one makes me smile. Do you have a person in your life that just makes you laugh and giggle all the time???!!! Well, for me, that is my niece Emma! You get to meet Emma in this read aloud as she co-stars as “Goose”. Watch Goose and Duck as their antics go from annoying one another to finding out that the other isn’t so bad after all! Special bluebird appearance by the youngest in my family—Violet—my very silly, special little one. I hope you enjoy Duck and Goose written and illustrated by Tad Hills! Happy Reading!

DAY 35

Bonjour Readers! Read Aloud 35 has arrived...A Book For Escargot. This is a tale written by Dashka Slater and illustrated by Sydney Hanson. While the main character, Escargot is just silly and fun—this book is a perfect fit for our OCPS 1st Graders while studying our current Unit in our Units of Study Writing Program! Escargot follows the model of fiction writing perfectly! Oui, Oui! Happy Reading! Au Revoir!

DAY 34

Hi Readers! It’s Friday... that means read aloud 34 is a Friday Classic!! Today, I am sharing Stan and Jan Berenstain’s “Bears in the Night”. This was another favorite from my younger years! You will see it is quite an easy read and quite repetitive! But, boy did I love it!! Have fun climbing up “Sook Hill”! Happy reading, happy Friday! See you next week!

DAY 33

Hi Readers! Read Aloud 33, Don’t Call Me Bear!, follows the antics of Koala. As he is often offended and frustrated by being called “bear”! This lighthearted book by Aaron Blabley (Pig the Pug, Thelma the Unicorn and the Bad Guys Series) will make you smile! Happy Reading, Mates!!

DAY 32

Hi Readers (and Riders)...Happy National Ride Your Bike to School Day. Bicycles and riding bring great joy to my life! Today’s book choice, the Girl and Her Bicycle, created by Mark Pett—illustrates this joy one can feel when getting a new bicycle. Stylistically, today, this book is quite different. It is a wordless book. Your job as a reader is to take a close look at the illustrations to determine what is happening. Then watch the actions made by the “girl” and other characters. Finally, you the reader get to create the words and dialogue in your own brain. You might notice a historic Ocean City bike shop used in this story...thanks Annarelli’s Bike Shop for letting us film...what a cool backdrop this 85 year old landmark OCNJ business provided. Another OCNJ landmark was also used in filming! Thanks to the almost 100 year old Cerruti’s Beauty Shop for providing our set too! Enjoy the ride and read. I hope you enjoy trying something new today! #readwithme #ridewithme #themerrittmonkeysofocps406 Special thanks to Max Richter for his acting skills!

DAY 31

Hi Readers! Read aloud 31 is just flat out silly—or should I say “Splat” out silly! Splat!, written by Jon Burgerman (author and illustrator of How to Eat Pizza) gives readers the opportunity to giggle! Have fun...it’s ok to be silly! Happy Reading!

DAY 30

Hi Readers! It’s May and that means it is National Bike Month! Bicycling is one of my most favorite things to do! Read Aloud 30 —Tillie the Terrible Swede: How One Woman, A Sewing Needle and a Bicycle Changed History—written by Sue Stauffacher an illustrated by Sarah McMenemy—is based on the life of a real woman—Tillie Anderson. Tillie Anderson was a pioneer for women’s rights in sports (and life). I’m grateful to Tillie the Terrible for paving the way for women bicycle racers! I hope you enjoy this story of sport and courage. Note: Throughout National Bike Month you will be seeing more bike themed read alouds! Happy Reading and Happy Riding!

DAY 29

Readers, it’s Friday!!! That means we have another “Friday Classic Book”! This week’s choice is the Bingity Bangity School Bus written in 1950. Doesn’t the Bingity Bangity Bus have great alliteration?!? This was another absolute favorite from my childhood! I could listen to this book over and over again. I hope you enjoy traveling back in time with this read aloud. Two fun notes: 1. Cardboard boxes are not aerodynamic in high winds. 2. Thanks to my production team—Marna, Poppy and Lisa for helping with EVERY read aloud. Couldn’t do these without them! Happy Reading and Happy Weekend!

DAY 28

Happy Thursday Readers! Today’s Read Aloud is a twist on a classic nursery rhyme—Humpty Dumpty. Dan Santat offers us “After the Fall”. This book investigates what happened to Humpty Dumpty after his famous fall. The message shared is, “Life begins after you get back up!” I think that’s pretty powerful! Hope you enjoy Santat’s Humpty Dumpty, After the Fall. Can you think of a time when “you’ve gotten back up”? Happy Reading.

DAY 27

Hi Readers! I’m excited for today’s read aloud! Read aloud 27!! A few weeks ago you met Arfy, the main character inTroy Cumming’s, Can I Be Your Dog? Recently, Cumming’s wrote a sequel— I Found a Kitty! Arfy reappears in this book with a new friend Scamper! Will Scamper find a home too?? Woof, Meow and Happy Reading! Which of these books did you enjoy more? Share your thoughts!

DAY 26

Hi Readers! Do you have a favorite “weird or strange” snack? Wait until you see what the “characters” in “Even Aliens Need Snacks” enjoy! I hope you enjoy what author/illustrator Matthew McElligott cooked up in this book! Grab a snack and read along! Maybe you’d like to try some of the “recipes” the aliens try! Happy Reading!

DAY 25

Happy Monday Readers! For read aloud 25, I have selected a brand new book—Elephant in my Kitchen! This book is written by Smriti Halls and illustrated by Ella Okstad. This book has been selected for a few reasons: it’s brand new; the Monkeys know other work by the illustrator Ella Okstad; the animals in the story are super cute and definitely silly....BUT, most importantly, Elephant in my Kitchen was selected for the message it shares—to take care of our Planet! Last week we celebrated Earth Day. This book is a great reminder that it needs to be “Earth Day Everyday!” Happy Reading.

DAY 24

Hi OCPS, Merritt Monkeys and Readers! Happy Friday! I am so excited for today’s read aloud. I have designated the next few Friday’s as “Classic Book Friday”. Each of these “Classic Books” will be favorites from my childhood. Today’s selection is Pantaloon, by Kathryn Jackson. Pantaloon was originally written in 1951, then updated in 1979. Pantaloon or “Panta Woo Woo” as I used to call it was an absolute favorite. I wanted this book read to me every night! Although, my parents—Marna and Poppy—would occasionally try to shorten it! Dogs, bikes and bakeries make the perfect book! I hope you enjoy this “classic” favorite of mine! Happy Friday, Happy Reading, Happy Weekend!

DAY 23

Hi OCPS Readers! Are you ready for the final and concluding chapter of Bink and Gollie book 1?! In the third chapter, “Give a Fish a Home”, Bink and Gollie’s shenanigans reach a whole new level! Chapter 3 really models how friends can work through differences...sometimes they just need a little extra communication! Ms. Morey and I really had fun acting as these characters and sharing Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee’s Bink and Gollie! We hope you enjoyed book 1 of this series. We hope you check out book 2 and 3 of the Bink and Gollie series! Thanks Ms. Morey for being an exceptional friend!

DAY 22

Hi Readers! Welcome back for Chapter 2 (P.S. I’ll Be Back Soon) of Bink and Gollie. Get ready to watch Bink and Gollie’s silly antics continue! Get ready to use your imagination in this chapter! If you could “journey” anywhere, where would you go? Ms. Morey and I hope you enjoy this chapter of Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee’s book! Happy Reading and Adventuring! Life is better with books and friends!

DAY 21

Hi OCPS Readers and Readers All Around! For the next 3 days—we are trying something a little different for our daily read aloud. In our first grade reading and writing units, we are moving into work about realistic fiction, reading book series and fiction writing—starting with scenes and progressing to series. So this seemed like the perfect opportunity to introduce you to one of my favorite beginning chapter book series, Bink and Gollie. The Bink and Gollie series is written by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee and illustrated by Tony Fucile. This series follows the antics of two unlikely friends, Bink and Gollie. The characters are each unique and quirky. The book illustrates how differences in people (and accepting these differences ) can actually make a friendship more meaningful. As mentioned, the Bink and Gollie series are chapter books. Today, you will listen and watch Chapter 1–“Don’t You Need a New Pair of Socks?” —from book 1 of the series. You will have to wait for Wednesday and Thursday to hear chapters 2 and 3! I’m so excited to have my MARVELOUS friend, Ms. Morey from the OCPS, join me as the character Gollie. These characters really remind us of each other. WE hope you enjoy Bink and Gollie as much as we do! Happy Reading!

DAY 20

Hi OCPS, Merritt Monkeys and Reading Friends Near and Far! We’rrrrrrrrre Baaaaaack! I hope you had an awesome spring break! As you know, we are still learning remotely—so therefore, I will continue with our read aloud series. Today is read aloud Day 20!!! I personally think daily laughter is one way to keep the brain and heart happy! Today’s read aloud, The Serious Goose—written and illustrated by Jimmy Kimmel—however, is SOOOOOO serious that you are certainly NOT going to smile or laugh! Just kidding! Get ready for SILLY! ...and hopefully lots of laughs. (Merritt Monkeys: get ready for a week of projects, activities and opportunities to create based on The Serious Goose. Happy Learning! Happy Reading! Keep Being Silly! #readwithme #themerrittmonkeys

(Mr. Kimmel, thank you for creating this book and helping young readers get excited about reading...and laughing. Thank you to all the authors and illustrators who are helping keep teacher’s connected to students during this uncharted experience of remote learning!)

DAY 19

Hi Reading Fans! Even though the OCPS is on spring break, I had to share a read along today, April 16! Today is the birthday of my teaching hero, icon and mentor—my mom—or as many of you know her, Marna! There has been no better form of teacher education, than what I have learned from my mom. Additionally, her love of children’s literature and children’s art have helped cultivate the teacher I am today. Marna, thank you. Today, a crazy cast of characters have joined me to help celebrate Marna’s birthday...her crew! Thank you RumerMerrittRichterConnolly’s for teaming up to help me read Grumpy Monkey Party Time! I’m certain Marna and the OCPS will love it! Grumpy Monkey Party Time is the sequel to Grumpy Monkey—written by Suzanne Lang and Illustrated by Max Lang. Grumpy Monkey books don’t make me grumpy...they make me HAPPY! Happy spring break, happy reading and Happy Birthday Marna!

DAY 18

Hi Readers! It’s day 18 of our read aloud series and the last one before the OCPS goes on spring break! Today’s pick is Hungry Bird, written and illustrated by Jeremy Tankard. This book makes me think of my niece, Emma, who like me is always “STARVING”! (Our family says we are dramatic about this!) Don’t you ever get hangry??? I hope you enjoy this read aloud! All my OCPS Family enjoy the time off! See you again on April 20th! I’m so glad you’ve all joined me on this reading journey so far. More egg-straordinary books to come when we resume! See you soon! Happy Reading! #readwithme #themerrittmonkeysofocps

DAY 17

Readers! Readers! I am so excited for today’s read aloud! Today’s choice is Harold & Hog Pretend For Real written by Dan Santat! This is FOR REAL silly! Mr. Santat is a writing friend of Mo Willems! In fact, can you spot some of Mo’s characters! Wait until you see the twists in the book—who do Harold and Hog remind you of?! Have fun trying to keep up with this book of pretending!! Happy Reading and keep on pretending!! #readwithme #themerrittmonkeysofocps

DAY 16

Hi Readers! How many of you are Mo Willems fans? I sure am!!! Mo is a giant in the world of children’s literature and illustration. (I hope he doesn’t mind we are sharing his work!) Today’s read aloud is a classic — Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! I had some requests for this book! This book is a perfect illustration of Mo’s humor! Have fun reading along. Mr. Willems books are awesome for acting out. I challenge you to read and pretend you are the silly characters! #readwithme#themerrittmonkeysofocps406

DAY 15

Hi Readers and Happy Monday! Our Day 15 read aloud—Scribble Stones, written and illustrated by Diane Alber, is a perfect fit for an initiative the Ocean City School District has been celebrating this 2019-2020 school year. The We Rock Initiative was developed to help each of us remember that: We Rock. The Ocean City Schools Rock. OCNJ Rocks. In fact, all my reading friends rock! This week the OCSD challenges you to think about what “rocks in your world right now”? Included in today’s read aloud is a video explaining our challenge! I hope you enjoy Scribble Stones. We would love to have you join the We Rock Challenge—you don’t have to be from Ocean City to participate! Happy Reading! I think you all ROCK!

FITNESS FRIDAY (DAY 14 CONTINUED) - Get Those Characters Moving!

Movement, fitness, and wellness for both the mind and body are an important piece of the DAILY curriculum in the Merritt Monkey House! Each day, I try to illustrate to my little people that fitness and exercise can be fun! I miss our daily movement or brain boosts tremendously! So, here’s a little movement break for all my Monkeys and Read Aloud Friends! Are you ready to help our book characters get moving and get in shape! Stand up, get moving and be silly! Happy Movement!

DAY 14

Hi Again Readers! For today’s read aloud, we changed up the genre a bit. Yard Sale, written by Eve Bunting and illustrated by Lauren Castillo, has a bit more of a serious tone. Yet the message at the end of the book is special and important. Hope you enjoy today’s book! As always happy reading! #readwithme #themerrittmonkeysofocps406

DAY 13

Hi Readers! I hope you’re continuing to enjoy our virtual read aloud each day. I’m having lots of fun dressing up and sharing some of my favorite books! Today’s choice is Can I Be Your Dog?, by Troy Cummings! Arfy, the main character is seeking a home. I know I wouldn’t be able to say no to him! Would you want to take Arfy home? PS I just noticed Troy Cummings has a new book, I Found A Kitty. Arfy stars in this book too! I just ordered the book… Can’t wait to share it with you! Happy Reading! Thank you Mr. Cummings For sharing your great work with us during this unusual time!

DAY 12

Hi Readers! It’s Read Aloud Day 12!! Today I selected a super silly book, How to Eat Pizza, written by Jon Burgerman. This book is fun to read and fun to listen to! The language used in this book is hilarious and allows the reader to read with emotion! I hope you enjoy this book as much as I do! I hope you don’t think it’s “disgusting” and watch out for the “crusty bottom”!

DAY 11

Hi Readers! Here is our 11th read aloud of our series—My Pet Wants a Pet. This book is written by Elise Broach and illustrated by Eric Barclay. I’m really excited for today’s book. It’s a fun story AND the illustrator, Eric Barclay has become a friend of the Merritt Monkeys. Earlier in the school year, the Monkeys did an author study of his work! We really got into his writing, illustrations and sculpture. Since then, Mr. Barclay has started following the Monkeys too! We are so excited to share Eric’s illustrations in this book (and Elise Broach’s writing too)! Have fun reading along! ps: Bolt the Pup makes another guest appearance today.

DAY 10

Hi Merritt Monkeys, 1st Graders, OCPS and Reading Friends! So we are starting our third week working at home, I know I’m missing my students. I’m sure lots of other teachers are too! Did anybody wake up feeling a little grumpy this Monday morning? I hope reading Grumpy Monkey, by Suzanne Lang and illustrated by Max Lang, puts a little smile on your face today! Happy Monday and Happy Reading!


Happy Friday Merritt Monkeys, OCPS and all my new Reading Friends! On Friday’s in the Merritt Monkey House, my parents, Marna and Poppy (both retired educators) join us in class. This is always a highlight of each week for my students. In my quest to keep some “normalcy” in life—I’ve asked a special “guest” to join us for this read aloud! (You just are going to have to provide your own doughnut today!) Be on the lookout for a special art lesson later with another favorite “guest”! Miss you all!!


Hi Readers! It’s already Day 8 of our virtual Read Aloud series! Today we take one more glimpse at the work of Ryan T. Higgins in Hotel Bruce. In this book I think you may spot some of the characters you met throughout this week! Do you now have a favorite character? I’d love for you to share...


Hi Readers! Here is read aloud day seven! Oh boy, this was a slight adventure to film! We continue with our author study of Ryan T. Higgins with We Don’t Eat Our Classmates. In this book you get to meet some more of his characters! Hope you like this silly version. Also, I hope some of my OCHS students like this story! They love when the dinosaur visits! Have a “Dino-mite” Time listening. Thanks for reading with me!


Read Aloud Day 6 delves us deeper into our week long author study of Ryan T. Higgins. I love Higgins’ characters, humor and art style. I hope you, readers, explore more of his work! For this read aloud, Be Quiet, I’ve recruited a few of my favorite characters to help share this book! Happy Reading! (Oh, I’ve also noticed many of you dressing up, making props and recording books too!! I think this is SOOOO cool! Please share these stories, videos and pictures with me!!!)


We are back for another week of distance learning! Kicking the week off with one of my absolute favorite author/illustrators, Ryan T. Higgins. Higgins’ books are hilarious for the whole family! Mr. Higgins, I hope you don’t mind your work being shared currently—I know during these uncertain times, that your books will bring smiles to many faces! Happy Reading Merritt Monkeys, OCPS and my Reading Friends near and far! Ohhhh and today was a little extra special—we got to share some of our Monkey Read Aloud love with Good Day Philadelphia!!!


Hi Reading Fans! Day 4 of our read aloud fun!!! Today, a switch in genres. While this read aloud may not be as silly as others, I really hope you enjoy the message of The Quickest Kid in Clarksville, written by Pat Zietlow Miller and illustrated by, Frank Morrison. (Thank you for sharing your work in this uncharted period of life.) Celebrate the speed, bravery and strength of Wilma Rudolph with me during this reading! And...if you know me well, you know I’ll say—just keep it moving! Running is good for you body and brain!


Hello OCPS and Friends All Around! Today’s Read Aloud, I Love You Fred, written by Mick Inkpen and illustrated by Chloe Inkpen—is a special one to me. The main character, Fred, looks and acts like my pup Bolt! Filming with Bolt made this one a little extra interesting! Today, my son TJ even helped! TJ and I are still working on our dog training skills! We hope you all enjoy! Again, thank you to all the wonderful authors and illustrators for their amazing work!


During this unique time, I am trying to maintain some normalcy for my 1st graders and friends of all ages! There is nothing like sharing a Read Aloud! Today’s read aloud is Nobody Hugs a Cactus. A 2019 book written by Carter Goodrich. There are so many amazing children’s books out there. Thank you to Carter Goodrich and children’s authors everywhere for helping us grow the love and joy of reading for our little people!


DAY 1 
Read aloud is one of my favorite parts of daily 1st Grade life. Since, we can’t all be together sharing quality children’s literature for the next bit of time, I will bring the Read Aloud to you , my OCPS friends! Today’s selection is the very funny, The Very Impatient Caterpillar, by Ross Burach. I think you might see why I picked this one! Happy Reading!