We started our Tournament of Books around the same time that the NCAA Mens and Womens tournaments began. Then we fell wildly behind. While the Villanova men won (they were my choice) and I came in 2nd in our office pool for the 2nd year in a row, we continued to work through our Sweet Sixteen. But first.
We started by taking a tour of the books that we’ve read this year. They were all laid out and the kids were visibly excited to revisit some of their favorites! Each student got 16 sticky notes to vote. It was a great exercise in expressing their own opinion and prioritizing their choices.
The 16 books with the most votes turned into our Sweet 16 was set and I started in on the wall display. (Not my strength) This year I put it up in the lunch room and have enjoyed watching how engaged the rest of the student body is with our progress.
I am also surprised how the Elite Eight is shaking up. The Gingerbread Man and his many reincarnated versions keep going down despite their overall popularity. V’s birthday book, Pig the Pug, was the UMBC of our March Book Madness taking down #1 seed The Ninjabread Man. This Land is Your Land, a song they’re learning in English and Spanish and the #15 seed, beat out The Gingerbread Man Lost in School. Love Monster and the Last Chocolate beat out everyone’s favorite Chicka Chicka Boom Boom!
In another surprise take down, Dr. Seuss’ The Sneetches beat out Pete the Cat. I’m not totally surprised because Ms. Diana lent us her special copy of The Sneetches and one of our favorite Library readers, Mr. Jimmy, read it out loud to the kids!
In a somewhat feeble attempt to get all the Elite 8 match ups settled before we go for Spring Break, I kicked the Sweet 16 into high gear. After lots of voting with their feet, the students’ creativity took over and they drew wonderful characters in a setting (we often have characters floating in space!) pictures to show their vote for How Full is Your Bucket for Kids v The Gingerbread Man.
I like to think of this vote as their natural kindness and bucket filling tendencies beating out the Gingerbread Man’s sassiness and the Wolf’s greediness. But that’s just my interpretation!
We’ll finish the Elite 8 after Spring Break and move right into the Final Four and Championship Game. I’m excited for other creative outlets and some global connections as we finish up.