Book Marks

Zilker Library: March 23-27, 2020

Hello from Mrs. Sharp!

Zilker Panthers,

I hope you all are well! Since we won't be seeing each other again for a bit, I wanted to share with you some great resources you can use at home during this time away. If you need anything at all, please feel free to send me an email or call me in the library (512-414-3325). I'll be checking email and voicemail regularly. Stay tuned for next week's newsletter!


Mrs. Sharp

Zilker Librarian

What I'm Reading Right Now

Panthers, don't forget about MackinVIA! All AISD students have access to it through your student portal. Just search "MackinVIA" and click on the tile. There are over 16,000 e-books, including audio books. There are also 1,376 books in Spanish!

Plus, there is easy access to kid friendly online databases on the left hand menu by clicking "Databases". There you can find:

  • PebbleGo
  • World Book Kids
  • National Geographic Kids
  • World Almanac Kids

MackinVIA Top 5!

Here are Mrs. Sharp's "Top 5" books to read for each grade level


1. 11 experiments that failed

2. A bear and his boy

3. Whose house is this?: a look at animal homes- webs, nests, and shells (then find some shells/snails outside!)

4. Alphabet everywhere (then take an "alphabet" walk around your yard or neighborhood)

5. The quiet book (then use your best listening ears to see what sounds you can hear outside; read The loud book next!)


1. Wangari's trees of peace: a true story from Africa

2. Benjamin Bear toon books (several available on MackinVIA)

3. Telephone by Mac Barnett (then play a silly game of "telephone" afterwards!)

4. Animals in spring (similar version available in Spanish too)

5. Big box of shapes (then draw your own creations using the shapes in the book)

1st grade:

1. The watcher: Jane Goodall's life with the chimps (then look up more about Jane Goodall on PebbleGo or World Book Kids)

2. Breaking news: bear alert

3. Duck, Duck, Goose

4. Hank's big day: the story of a bug (then go on a bug scavenger hunt outside afterwards!)

5. Mustache baby (two available!)

2nd grade:

1. Mary walker wears the pants: the true story of the doctor, reformer, and Civil War hero

2. Boy + bot (make a robot costume using found objects at your house or draw your own!)

3. Cam Jansen series (I loved reading these mysteries aloud to my 2nd graders before I was a librarian)

4. 5 steps to drawing...series (lots of ones available!)

5. DK first animal encyclopedia (then use PebbleGo or World Book Kids to look up more about some of the animals you find interesting or visit the San Diego Zoo animal cams!)

3rd grade:

1. The bad beginning (the first book in the Series of Unfortunate Events, also a Netflix series!)

2. Creature features (all of Steve Jenkins books are awesome!)

3. Bessie Coleman: daring stunt pilot (awesome graphic novel about this hero, look her up on World Book Kids to learn more)

4. Alvin Ho (the whole series is available on MackinVIA!)

5. Unicorn Rescue Society (fans of fantasy will love this series)

4th grade:

1. The Wild Robot (available as both e-book and audiobook!)

2. Animals by the numbers: a book of infographics (all of Steve Jenkins books are fascinating and you can use Canva to make your own infographic!)

3. Alamo all-stars by Nathan Hale (read the other books by Hale, then take a virtual tour of the Alamo)

4. El Deafo (graphic novel, memoir)

5. The Candymakers

5th grade:

1. The Girl Who Drank the Moon (Newbery Award winner!)

2. The twelve most amazing natural wonders (then explore some of them using Google Maps in Satellite view)

3. The One and Only Ivan (then read the companion nonfiction book "Ivan: the remarkable true story...")

4. The Apprentices (fantasy, adventure, page flipping!)

5. The Land of Stories (almost the whole series is available on MackinVIA!)

*BONUS: Been there, done that: writing stories from real life (then write your own short story!)

Mac Barnett's Book Club Show on Instagram (with hats)!

Looking to join a book club that's all virtual? And who doesn't love Mac Barnett? We've read lots of his books in the library, Panthers! He's hosting a book club on Instagram, reading one of his 42 picture books each day at noon. It stays up for 24 hours in his story. Grab a hat and participate, along with the Sharp family!
Check out Kate Messner's website for lots of resources to jump into some great books and for links to other authors that are sharing their books online. Plus, Kate is sharing her Ranger in Time books, a few chapters each day!
Author and Illustrator Mo Willems has shared lunchtime doodles on his YouTube page that are so much fun for kids (and their grownups) to follow along with. Check them out!

Calling 2nd-5th graders!

Get a head start on next year's Bluebonnet Books!

The Zilker Library website has been updated with next year's Bluebonnet Award nominated books, as well as other resources, if you'd like to get a head start!