"If the only tool you have is a hammer.....
everything around you looks like a nail."

Books, Books and More Books!
Volume 6, Issue 5 - January 4, 2004

presented by
Walter McKenzie
The One and Only Surfaquarium

Happy New Year! The One and Only Surfaquarium has been updated for 2004, with lots of new resources and a fresh format to keep you coming back for more! Check it out at http://surfaquarium.com Also, there's just five days to go to register for the 2004 edition of the eIditarod project. We've set new records for participation this year with more than 435 classes entered and counting! Why not be part of the action? Sign up at http://surfaquarium.com/eIditarod/

For the February edition of the newsletter, I am looking to identify ten of the top online educators. I am not looking for the top gurus or corporate representatives. This recognition is intended to be from educators on the front lines of education to ten of their own best and brightest. I am seeking out those educators who have done on outstanding job of furthering education online: through a teacher- oriented web site, student-oriented online project, or through the online publication of work that advances the profession in a significant way.

To nominate someone for consideration, please email me at walter@surfaquarium.com with the subject line TOP ONLINE EDUCATOR NOMINATION and a paragraph naming

  • the person
  • the URL(s) they are responsible for, and
  • the ways in which their work has improved the quality of education, either for you personally or for profession as a whole

I had an open nomination for teachers worldwide through December 19th, but I am providing an exclusive window of opportunity for ITN subscribers to make nominations through January 18, 2003. Please take advantage of this invitation in the next two weeks to add to the excellent pool of nominees I have already received. I look forward to publishing the top ten list next month!

Here is an update of my April 1999 issue devoted completely to good children's literature, from K-12. I targeted not so much online books as resources to help teachers locate and make use of quality kiddie lit. Hope you find something you like!

Animated History of Books - http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/books/historyofbooks/

A great resource from the BBC that covers the history of book publishing, in both Flash and HTML versions.

Anthology of Middle English Literature - http://www.luminarium.org/medlit/

Essays, articles and sources on Chaucer, Gawain, Langland, Julian, Kempe, Malory, Everyman, as well as Lyrics and Plays.

Authors and Illustrators on the Web - http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/authors.html

Awesome central location for links to all kinds of children's authors' web pages; if you can't find it here there are even more leads to pursue more obscure names - well done!

Aspects of the Victorian Book - http://www.bl.uk/collections/early/victorian/intro.html

Covers every aspect of book production and publishing in the 1860s, including lithography. yellowbacks and penny dreadfuls.

Award Winning Children's Books - http://awardbooks.hypermart.net/

Hypermart site offering annotations on books of note as touted by the more prestigious accolades in the publishing industry; good place to get information for purchasing or to build a quality library.

Bibliomania - http://www.bibliomania.com/

Bibliomania offers free online literature and study guides for 2000+ classic pieces of literature; searchable by author, title and full text.

Book Adventure - http://www.bookadventure.org/

Great site to get kids reading and win prizes in the process, hosted by Sylvan with Rex reader and Bailey Bookmark.

Book Talks Quick and Simple - http://nancykeane.com/booktalks/

Over 1,400 booktalks intended to be used by school library media specialists and teachers; searchable by author and title.

BookHive - http://www.bookhive.org/

The Public Library of Charlotte-Mecklenburg County (in Charlotte, NC) hosts this collection of book recommendations appropriate for elementary-aged students.

Caldecott Medal Home Page - http://www.ala.org/Content/NavigationMenu/ALSC/Awards_and_Scholarships1/Literary_and_Related_Awards/Caldecott_Medal/Caldecott_Medal.htm

Official ALA site cataloguing the most recognized illustrated children's books through the years; a great reference source.

Carol Hurst's Children's Literature Site - http://www.carolhurst.com/index.html

Book reviews, practical literature extension ideas, themes and professional resources all designed with busy classroom teachers in mind.

Children's Literature - http://www.childrenslit.com/

More than 125 staff members review more than 3,000 books annually and offer their critiques to educators in making good choices with children's literature.

Children's Literature Web Guide- http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/index.html

Books, awards, authors, resources, lessons and ideas for the classroom - a definitive site when looking for books and activities to augment them.

Children's Literature and Language Arts Resources - http://falcon.jmu.edu/~ramseyil/childlit.htm

Hosted by the Internet School Library Media Center, this is an excellent jumping off point for all things to do with literature-based activities.

CM Magazine - http://www.umanitoba.ca/cm/

Canadian review of books and media which can be of help to teachers trying to keep track of what's new and what's best in children's literature.

Database of Award-Winning Children's Literature - http://www.dawcl.com/

Lisa R. Bartle hosts this searchable collection of 4,000 records from 50 book awards across five English-speaking countries.

Haring Kids - http://www.haringkids.com/

Keith Haring's marvelous site bringing together books and the arts with fun and games to promote literacy for kids 14 and younger.

Hero's Journey - http://www.mcli.dist.maricopa.edu/smc/journey/

Simulation to explore the classic mythical hero and create your own stories - a wonderful concept nicely done.

Horn Book Awards - http://www.hbook.com/bghbabout.shtml

Official site of the Boston Globe annual awards for excellence in literature for children and young adults; covers the last 50 years.

International Children's Digital Library - http://www.icdlbooks.org/

This is a five year University of Maryland project creating a collection of more than 10,000 books in at least 100 languages that is freely available to everyone via the Internet.

Internet Public Library Kidspace - http://www.ipl.org/div/kidspace/

The "youth division" of IPL offering links to books online for all kinds of interests, newly formatted and ready for your use in the new year.

Just for Kids Who Love Books - http://www.alanbrown.com/

Alan Brown's wonderful resource of all things to do with children's books and authors, including reviews, forums, games and response pages.

Kidbibs - http://kidbibs.com/home.htm

A web site intending to bring kids and books together, Kidbibs is not only designed for teachers but for parents and other professionals who work with children.

Kidlit - http://mgfx.com/Kidlit/

Jack and Pam Mikula offer this online site celebrating work by kids and for kids.....a great way to motivate the budding authors and illustrators under your tutelage.

Kidsreads - http://www.kidsreads.com/

Carol Fitzgerald and company offer reviews of the newest titles, interviews with the coolest authors and special features on great books - games too.

Learning with Mysteries - http://www.mysterynet.com/learn/sites/

MysteryNet offers these five approaches for teaching the mystery genre and connecting it to learning in all areas.

Legends - http://www.legends.dm.net/

History, literature, and lore presented with the promise of guided access to primary source material and up-to-date scholarship, personal essays and extended reviews.

Literary Resources on the Net - http://andromeda.rutgers.edu/%7Ejlynch/Lit/

Searchable database and common sense categories make this a useful search tool for the English-oriented instructor.

Malaspina Great Books Interdisciplinary Matrix - http://www.mala.bc.ca/~mcneil/matrix.htm

Hundreds of titles by subject area and literary period - indispensable for curriculum integration, especially at the secondary level.

Newbery Medal Home Page - http://www.ala.org/Content/NavigationMenu/ALSC/Awards_and_Scholarships1/Literary_and_Related_Awards/Newbery_Medal/Newbery_Medal.htm

ALA site celebrating those books recognized as having made distinguished contributions to children's literature through the years; awesome for upper elementary and beyond.

Page by Page: Creating a Children's Book - http://www.nlc-bnc.ca/pagebypage/index-e.html

If you conduct a writing workshop in your classroom, then you have to check out this site that follows the professional publication of two books: 'Zoom Upstream' and 'School.'

Scholastic Place - http://place.scholastic.com/

Remember how these guys wanted to sign you up for their pay site so you could have access to them 24/7? Well the good news is that once again the site is FREE! Make a point to check it out.

SCORE CyberGuides - http://www.sdcoe.k12.ca.us/score/cyberguide.html

Supplementary, web-based units of instruction centered on core works of literature designed for the classroom with one online computer.

Surfing with the Bard - http://www.ulen.com/shakespeare/

Over 200 pages on this site alone plus links, discussion boards and more - all dedicated to Shakespeare's genius.

Teacher Views - http://www.eduplace.com/tview/

Teacher submitted reviews of K-8 children's books with recommended activities to boot; submit your own reviews and share the wealth!

Vandergrift's Children's Literature Web Pages - http://www.scils.rutgers.edu/%7Ekvander/ChildrenLit/

Kay Vandergrift's comprehensive site that includes as much literary criticism as it does collections of titles and links.

Webtime Stories - http://www.kn.pacbell.com/wired/webtime/

Access to many links on our rich literary tradition: Myths, Fables and Fairy Tales, Great Books, Young Adults, and Just for Fun; resources too.

Yahoo Directory of Authors - http://dir.yahoo.com/Arts/Humanities/Literature/Authors/Children_s/

Direct links to more than 100 children's authors with an online presence.

Yahoo Directory of Illustrators - http://dir.yahoo.com/Arts/Humanities/Literature/Genres/Children_s/Illustrators/

Direct links to web pages of more than 75 children's book illustrators.

Yahooligans Directory of Books - http://yahooligans.yahoo.com/school_bell/language_arts/books/

More than 200 links to popular books and titles celebrated online; also includes links to recommended lists of authors, awards, reviews, publishers, and reading lists.

Find More Great Resources at

Next Month's Topic: "Top Ten Online Educators"

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You can email URL's of high quality sites which may be of interest to our readers as well as new topic ideas and input and feedback!



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2004 Walter McKenzie