Author Archives: Samantha McGinnis

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Focus on First Book, For Educators

Why We Celebrate Teacher Appreciation Day

A teacher’s job is never done. Their days are spent solving math problems, analyzing the passages of books,  teaching the great lessons of history and serving as their students’ trusted experts. But when the final bell rings, their day isn’t finished. There are countless pages of homework… Read More
Focus on First Book, For Educators

Share This eCard on Teacher Appreciation Day – and beyond!

Tomorrow is Teacher Appreciation Day! Teachers are truly worth celebrating. They dedicate their time and energy to patiently teaching each child, making learning their top priority. They are mentors, coaches and trusted friends. They introduce us to some of our first lesson and stories. Share this eCard with… Read More
For Educators, Impact Stories

Your Students Can Make a Difference in Their Communities

Use these great books to get your students them thinking about how they can make a difference in their communities. These activities, paired with stories, help students use their own skills and passion to take action. For more tips and activities to use with the books below,… Read More
Focus on First Book, Impact Stories

A Thank You Note from Camila

Every week we receive dozens of thank you notes from schools and programs just like this one. Kids thank us for books they don’t want to put down, books that help them study and succeed, books they wouldn’t otherwise have. The book she received is turning her into an enthusiastic… Read More
Our Bookshelf

Monthly Book List: Our Five Favorite Books for April

Our favorite books for April teach some important lessons! One celebrates the human body and diversity, while others teach kindness and the keys to a true friendship. You’ll find a story that will help foster kids’ sense of empathy and understanding and an award-winning novel that tackles the topics of… Read More
For Educators, Our Bookshelf

Teaching Good Character with Books

Stories can help children to develop into responsible, caring and contributing citizens. Use the activities for each book below to teach good character traits like kindness, self-control and perseverance to your students. To view all the books chosen and to see all the tips and activities suggested for each… Read More
Impact Stories

Books Gave Him A Sense of Home – Even When He Didn’t Have One

Today’s guess blogger is Melissa Spradlin, Executive Director of Book’em in Nashville, TN. I want to tell you about Ben. From our first meeting, Ben had an extraordinary connection with books. Every time we met to read together, he chose one to keep. He was exceptionally grateful for each… Read More
Impact Stories

How Arts & Crafts Created a Space to Talk and Heal

Today’s guest blogger is Emily Townsend, an Elementary School Counselor at Lowrie Primary School in Wilsonville, Oregon. Last year I worked daily with a fourth grade student whose father passed away right before Christmas break. He grieved mostly internally, and became increasingly distant, disengaged, and behind in school. After… Read More
For Educators, Our Bookshelf

Books that Teach Creativity, Critical Thinking, Communication and Collaboration

Creativity, critical thinking, communication and collaboration are critical skills for children to learn so they can succeed in today’s world. Use the books below and the guided questions to teach these concepts found in each story. You’ll find a well-known fable told from another culture’s perspective, an inspiring tale… Read More
Impact Stories

Imagine A School Without A Library

Today’s guest blog post is by bestselling children’s author Megan McDonald, 2016 Spokesperson for the American Association of School Librarians National School Library Month. Imagine a school without a library. A few years back, I was honored to be a visiting author in elementary schools in the… Read More