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Hello there! My name is Richelle Villabona. I am a sophomore at Southern Connecticut State University, and I am majoring in Early Childhood Education, as well as Interdisciplinary. My second major consists of a Psychology minor and the other is self-designed, and let's just say it is "interpreting cultures with a focus in Spanish, while teaching". (A mouthful. I know)

I'm merely a body filled to the brim with love, just looking for the people and things that make me feel alive. And with every moment, I am thankful.

Richelle Villabona

Book Review: May I Bring a Friend?

3 min read

Bibliographical Data

May I Bring a Friend?

Author: Beatrice Schenk De Regniers

Illustrator: Beni Montresor

Publisher: Antheneum Books for Young Readers

Publishing Date: 1964

Age Range: 3-7

ISBN:  978-0-689-20615-3

Summary
May I Bring a Friend? is a Caldecott Medal recipient of 1965 that tells the story about a young boy who gets invited to visit the king and queen for different occasions.  Each time, the boy would politely ask the king and queen if he may bring a friend, and each time, the king and queen say yes.  As the story continues, the boy would bring different types of animals to the parties, who are as polite and kind as the boy.

Author Biography
Beatrice Schenk De Regniers is an American author born in Lafayette, Indiana, on August 16, 1914.  Her most well know books are May I Bring a Friend?; What Can You Do with A Shoe; Everyone is Good for Something.  She attended the University of Illinois, then the University of Chicago for her graduate study.  In 1941, she attended the Winnetka Graduate Teachers College.  She was a member of the Authors Guild, Authors League of America, Society of Children’s Book Writers, and many more.  She died in her home in Washington, D.C. on March 1, 2000

Review
May I Bring a Friend? is wonderful picture book for all ages who enjoy a laugh and a surprise.  The young boy brings light to a time of well-mannered and behaved children with entertaining friends.  The cover of the book leaves a clue for the readers to guess what kind of friends this young boy has.  The book is written with pattern and movement that readers continue to flip the pages to meet the friend’s of this boy and the reactions of the king and queen.

Analysis of Literary Element
In May I Bring a Friend?, there are two dominant literary elements of beautiful illustrations, and pattern and rhyme.  Readers can enjoy the setting and background of the get togethers and silly characters dancing around the pages.  Young children will be interested to find out who this little boy brings to the party next and find a new, or a few, happy faces.  Pattern is achieved by the continuous sequence of the boy getting invited by the king and queen, the boy asking them if he could bring a friend, their response, and the different guests each time.  Rhyming words are included to keep the fluidity of the story going and added fun.

Richelle Villabona

Book Review: Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear

3 min read

Bibliographical Data

Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear

Author: Lindsay Mattick

Illustrator: Sophie Blackall

Publisher: Harper Collins Publishers Limited

Publishing Date: October 20, 2015

Age Range: 3-8

ISBN: 978-0-316-32490-8

Summary
Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear is the winner of the 2016 Caldecott Medal. The story begins with a young boy named Cole asking his mother to tell him a story.  Though it is late, the mother lays the scene about a veterinarian named Harry Colebourn, who is off to war.  On his way, he comes across a small baby cub on a train platform tied to rope with a trapper at the end of it.  Colebourn buys the baby cub from the trapper and thus, begins their journey throughout the war together.  The bear is named Winnie.
Author Biography
Lindsay Mattick is the great-granddaughter of Harry Colebourn, who brought the story of Winnie the Pooh to all generations.  Mattick was born in Winnipeg, which Winnie is named after.  She recounts the story that her great-grandfather told her a long time ago about a bear he met by the train.  She has shared her family’s story through many different media outlets, and she decided to create picture book for all to read.
Review
Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear is a non-fiction picture book that depicts the truth about the real Winnie the Pooh.  The story is not told with factual evidence line after line, but it has a story line with young Cole interjecting during story time with mom.   The story keeps readers and listeners engaged with pictures that fill up more than half the page.  It is enjoyable for all readers and leaves the little ones leaving comments and asking questions, along with Cole, about the love of a man and bear.

Analysis of Literary Element
An important literary element in Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear is the plot.  Winnie the Pooh has been an influential character for many children and adults alike.  This is the true accounts of the real Winnie the bear and his guardian Captain Harry Colebourn.  Since his great-granddaughter wrote the story, many readers are eager to finally learn the truth about their honey-loving idol.  Finding Winnie is a picture book that keeps readers interested to find out about Captain Colebourn and his bear!

Richelle Villabona

Compilation

2 min read

For Learning Event 9 (#LE9), I have compiled all my Walk my World posts and linked my twitter.

Dear World, I am Me 

This picture of me is one of my favorites.  It was taken at my university to share social justice.  The word's written on my arms are something that I have carried with me for long time.

Where Did You Come From Lady (PYT) 

My family is an influential part of my life.  There is not a time that I remember my life before them.  Yes, I was born into the family, but my friends and our family friends, were always just with us from the start.  We've grown together and pushed each other to be stronger and for that I am greatful.

"How I Got To Who I Am"

I mentioned my family, my school, and travels in this video.  As I mentioned previously, family is always going to be number one in my heart.  Travelling is, definitely, a priviledge that I never want to take for granted.  It feeds my soul and mind about different people and their cultures, traditions, and perspectives.  I am where I am today, because of my education and pushing through every step of the way.

Turning Points 5

In this video, I talked about the turning points in my life.  They have not been easy.  I continue to struggle with some of these things in the video, but I am not going down without a fight.  My support system drives me to do better and be better, so thank you all for that.

"Come What May"

Ahh.. my future.  I do hope that things do go as planned, but like I said, if there are new opportunities and adventures before my 'declaration' happens that's fine, too.  I'm always up for the challenge and adventure, and as long as I bring myself pack on my path, I'll be golden.

Thanks for hanging out with me and getting to know a little bit more about me! 

Richelle Villabona

Video Diary Series

1 min read

For learning events 4, 5, and 8, I thought the best way to share my story is by talking to you one on one.  I have created a video diary series that shares with you about where I come from, what I have done, and hopefully, be doing in the future.  I hope that you enjoy them!

"How I Got To Who I Am"

https://youtu.be/ghrIxYm6BfE

"Turning Points"  

youtu.be/00VmkgEO7o0 

"Come What May"

youtu.be/nV9pnIvLiBs 

 

Richelle Villabona

The Giving Tree

2 min read

For my mini lesson, I would teach grade 3 how to:

Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.

I would begin my lesson by reading The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein.  The book is about a big, tall tree meeting a young boy and their experiences throughout many years.  Everyday the young boy would come to the tree and make a crown for his head from her leaves.  As he grew older he did not come as often.  Once, he needed money and the tree gave him apples to sell in the town.  She was always happy to help and give him what he needed.  The story continues with the same theme, all the way to the tree giving herself (trunk) to the little boy who is now a man.  The book ends with the now old man returning to the tree appreciating all that she has done for him.

Throughout my storytelling, I would ask my students about guiding questions about the relationship between the tree and the boy.  I would emphasize the feelings and traits between the tree and the boy.  We would write on the board together a T-chart about characteristics of the tree and boy.  At end my lesson, the class would recognize that the actions of the tree kept the boy happy and her love for the boy made her happy for a while.  As a class we can go over the things that we are thankful for and appreciate what others do for us that sometimes we forget to thank them.  We will remind ourselves of these things, why they push us to be better everyday, and remember to give back to them, too.

Richelle Villabona

Realistic Fiction

2 min read

Cynthia A. Tyson does not feel that fairytales should be taught throughout the curriculum.  She uses contemporary realistic fiction to get her points and the thematic points across to her students in a way that they would better understand.  Tyson says that students would be more engaged in a text that related to them.  Though, I do not believe that fairytales should be taken out of the curriculum entirely.  Fairytales at a more relevant age would benefit from the characters and the morals that are presented.  As students grow older, more and more contemporary books should be put in place to keep all students aware of different environments around them.

Some areas in the books reflect the reality in the United States, but areas such as poverty are misrepresented.  People are not willing to see this portion of the world.  Many things get shoved under the rug, and there it will stay.  Some people know that there is poverty in the states, but do not actually know.  But how could they?  This is why as educators we can better our students to understand socio-economical differences and how we can grow from there instead up waving it away.

Richelle Villabona

Like Poetry Like Waves

2 min read

Poetry has a fluidity to it that allows students to express themselves in their own voices that is different from narratives.  Poetry is read in their own voice but has the power to resonate with someone else.  Students have the ability to interpret a poem in any way that they chose.  They can manipulate pauses and flows of the poems to add emphasis to where it is needed in anyway they choose.  I enjoyed the portion where students would walk into class and immediately immerse themselves into free write.  I believe in free write and how it is essential to get the brain flowing and energy swifting.  Free write can allow student to really get into the flow of their thoughts and plopping them down on paper.  I believe that free write should happen more often throughout the day to build an arsenal of stories filled with emotion.  Poetry builds imagination by its creator through the flow of their thoughts.  Think of a wave, gently saying hello to the shore and quickly saying its goodbye.  Focus on the movement, the repetition, the possible motive behind it.  Someone could use poetry like a wave crashing onto shore building and creating momentum to create something that is their own.

Richelle Villabona

Phonics! Super Sounds and Letters!

1 min read

Growing up, phonics was a big deal.  We had phonics workbooks and I remember the first one being this tangerine orange.  I particularly enjoyed phonics the best before I met my art class, but that is another story.  I enjoyed sounding out vowels and consonants to get to the end of the word.  Phonics helped my 2nd grade spelling bee winning title.  I had a love/hate relationship with short and long vowel sounds.  Why do you look so deceiving?  The thought of the sound of my own name changing if I emitted one lousy letter was pretty neat (Richelle, Richell).  Honestly, I am not making this up.  Tiny human me thought vowels were pretty super because they controlled the way the word would sound.  I’d write the word and then cover up a vowel or consonant and see the word lose its aura.  Then, I’d uncover the word, and the aura would comeback.

Stay super, phonics!

Richelle Villabona

Draw My Life

1 min read

I have finally created a “Draw My Life” video!  It is much anticipated by me (because I never came around to doing one), and I am pretty happy with how it turned out.  I wish I could tell you more, but long videos tend to go on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and……….

But anyway, please, enjoy my video!

Click Me!

Richelle Villabona

Dear Diary (Biography)

1 min read

Dear Diary,

 

It is time.  Time.  How I have missed it so…

I don’t know if I am ready.  Before I left, there were tears, and I know there will be more when I return.  And this time for a different reason.  There are so many things that I left behind.  Mom’s cooking was my favorite.  She always made this cured meat that I would wait day by day, hour by hour waiting for.  I miss the sour aroma and tangy taste that all these red and black spices created, to which I still don’t know the names of. 

My biggest desire that I lusted for over and over, running through my mind…. A warm bath.  A Bath.  I’ve missed the bubbles and soap.  The calmness of the water and the fog of the windows.

Soon.  I’ll be home soon.

 

Sincerely,

Your Tired Self