Check It Out! Week of March 14th



In grades K-3, we will be reading books to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  The 4th and 5th grade students will be preparing for next week’s author visit with Ted Sanders (see previous post below).  They will be watching the book trailer for the first book in The Keepers‘ series, as well as seeing some videos of Ted’s Tour Diary.


SBPS Picks for 2016 Monarch and Bluestem Books Announced!



The K-5 students have spoken and they have voted for their favorite Monarch and Bluestem books from the 2016 lists!

In grades K-2, “The Watermelon Seed” by Greg Pizzoli had the most votes, while the graphic novel, and April “Hooked on Books Club” book, “Sidekicks” by Dan Santat was the clear winner with students in grades 3-5.

We should know soon who the winners are for the state of Illinois.


Calling All 1st Graders!


class pets

Come join Mrs. Susina for the St. Benedict “Booked for Recess” Club

The “Booked for Recess” Club for 1st graders will meet on Tuesday, April 19th, during recess.  We will be reading 8 Class Pets + 1 Squirrel ÷ 1 Dog = Chaos by Vivian Vande Velde.  Students should have the book read before we meet to discuss it.

When Twitch the squirrel is chased into a school by the principal’s dog, the class pets work together to rescue him. In this hilarious chapter book, a group of small animals turn an elementary school into a real zoo.

Students can check this book out of our school library or the public library.  If you would like Mrs. Susina to order a copy of the book for you, please send $8 (cash if possible) to school by Monday, March 21st.  This will allow enough time for the books to arrive and for your child to have the book read by our club date.

Click here for the RSVP/book form: 1st Grade April Booked for Recess

Ted Sanders Author Visit for 4th and 5th Grade


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Thanks to our friends at The Book Stall in Winnetka, SBPS will be welcoming local author Ted Sanders to our school on Wednesday, March 23rd!

A recipient of a 2012 National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, he teaches at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The second book in his acclaimed series, The Keepers, (set in Chicago) has just been released.

Mr. Sanders will be speaking to the 4th and 5th graders and will be happy to sign and personalize copies of his books on the day of his visit.

Order forms were distributed today, but you can click here if you need an extra copy. tedsandersorderform Please return this form to the library with payment by Monday, March 21st.  The Book Stall will make every attempt, but may not be able to guarantee late orders.

We are very excited to be hosting Mr. Sanders!

Markus Zusak, Author of “The Book Thief,” to appear in the Chicago-area!




Our friends at The Book Stall in Winnetka wanted us to share some exciting news with you!

Markus Zusak, author of “The Book Thief,” is appearing in the Chicago-area as part of a rare US tour, celebrating the 10th anniversary of his contemporary classic, “The Book Thief.

Markus Zusak will be speaking and signing books at The Winnetka Congregational Church, 725 Pine Street in Winnetka, IL. on Saturday, March 12th at 3 PM. Both hardcover and paperback copies of the 10th anniversary edition, with bonus content, will be available, and Mr. Zusak will be happy to sign copies of this new edition.

This event is free and ticketless. Your purchase of a book from The Book Stall helps support this tour.

They recommend arriving 15 minutes early to get a good seat. Those who sit closest to the front will be among the first to have their books signed.

Can’t make it? Call The Book Stall, 847-446-8880, and they will be happy to arrange getting you a signed copy.

The Booked for Recess Club (Grade 2) Meets April 22nd

el deafo.jpg

Come join Mrs. Susina for the St. Benedict “Booked for Recess” Club

The “Booked for Recess” Club will meet on Tuesday, April 12th, during recess.  We will be reading the 2015 Newbery Honor book, El Deafo by Cece Bell.

Going to school and making new friends can be tough. But going to school and making new friends while wearing a bulky hearing aid strapped to your chest? That requires superpowers!  Author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her experiences with the Phonic Ear, a very powerful—and very awkward—hearing aid.  The Phonic Ear gives Cece the ability to hear—sometimes things she shouldn’t—but also isolates her from her classmates. She really just wants to fit in and find a true friend, someone who appreciates her as she is. After some trouble, she is finally able to harness the power of the Phonic Ear and become “El Deafo, Listener for All.” And more importantly, declare a place for herself in the world and find the friend she’s longed for.

Click here for the RSVP/book order form: April-Booked-for-Recess

The Booked for Recess Club AND the Bengals Bookworms Met This Week!



The Bengals Bookworms and the Booked for Recess Club both met this week to discuss some fantastic titles. Our 6th graders read “I Am Malala” and seemed to really enjoy reading about Malala’s passion for education and peace. The 2nd grade students loved “The Year of Billy Miller” and they seemed to really connect with him and some of his second grade experiences. Some great discussions from both groups!