Bullet Journal: March 2020

During the past week while on our schools are on spring break and we have been practicing social distancing, I have worked on getting my bullet journal up to date. Yesterday while writing in my journal entry for the day, I realised that I had not yet shared my March spreads in this space. I determined to rectify that oversight.

For March I decided to loosely follow the theme created by Amanda Rach Lee, a YouTuber that I follow. I say loosely as I used a different quote to what she chose as well as a different layout for my weekly and monthly spread. As I enjoy reading, I have chosen to write down each month a quote from one of the books I have enjoyed reading. This month, the quote is from Unblemished by Sara Ella, a Young Adult Fantasy novel.

I used the leaf theme Amanda Rach Lee came up with in my monthly spread. While keeping my spread simple, I adapted her idea to suit my requirements. I liked the way she incorporated the leaves into a mood tracker and thought I could create something similar. I used a mood tracker in February and enjoyed filling it in therefore thought I would work on one again this month.

I adjusted the weekly spread and used a format that I have enjoyed using in the past. The spread has been quick and easy for me to recreate each week in March so far. I am loving its simplicity as well as the colours that I used.

Because of the social distancing so many of us are adhering to, the days this week (and next week) are free of plans. I am using the space, though, to keep a record of what I am doing at home as well as my thoughts.

What theme are you using this month in your bullet journal?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2020

(This post is linked to The Escapist Colouring Club. You are welcome to join us and share some colouring work)

Book of the Month: January 2020

I am a little late with my monthly wrap-up. With all that has been going on in my work life, my routine has been a little skewered. 😦 As I have finished reading my first book for February, I thought I had best do my wrap up post before posting the review of my completed read.

During the month of January I managed to read 7 titles:

  1. Courtney Alameda & Valynne Maetani Seven Deadly Shadows – Young Adult Fantasy ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️5 stars
  2. Rebecca Raisin The Little Bookshop on the Seine – Women’s Contemporary Fiction ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️4 stars
  3. Lamar Giles Not So Pure and Simple – Young Adult Contemporary ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️4 stars
  4. Christina Lauren Twice in a Blue Moon – Romance ⭐️⭐️2 stars
  5. Martin Michaud Never Forget – Police Procedural ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️5 stars
  6. Abbi Waxman The Bookish Life of Nina Hill ⭐️⭐️⭐️3 stars
  7. Karen McBride Crow Winter ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️5 stars

The title of my favourite book kept shifting as I read more books during the month. After reading Seven Deadly Shadows by Courtney Alameda & Valynne Maetani, I was sure that this amazing fantasy novel would remain my best read. However, Never Forget by Martin Michaud was just as good, though a different genre. After reading Crow Winter by Karen McBride, the novel immediately took first place as I knew it would be my favourite.

This debut novel touched me to the core in unexpected ways. The imagery used was beautiful; and I loved seeing the growth and development of a young woman as she overcomes her grief for her father and connects with the cultural traditions of her ancestors. The story also has a sub-story as colonialism is referred to. The Anishnaabe group are seen as grieving over the loss of their culture; and yet there is hope as the young people turn back to the ways of the past and the Europeans living on the traditional lands attempt to make restitution. If you are interested in reading more about my thoughts on this novel, you may find it here.

Many of the books I read in January were good choices and I look forward to seeing what February will bring me.

What was your favourite read in January?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2020

A Coloured Library

I have been colouring my bookish page for a while now and decided this summer I would finish it so that I can complete the project I I have in mind. Last night saw me Netflixing and colouring the last line of the illustrated shelf.

My page is done. Now onto the next step!

What have you been colouring in lately?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2019

(This post is linked to The Escapist Colouring Club. You are welcome to join us and share some colouring work)

Colouring to Celebrate

Last week Thursday was World Penguin Day. The Penguin is our school mascot so every year the entire school focuses on these wonderful creatures. In my classroom, my students worked on a number of activities that I had prepared for them – one of which was colouring in a beautiful penguin mandala that I had found.

Colouring Penguin Mandalas. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

Colouring is a great way for the children to practice holding and manoeuvring the pencil. It is also a calming activity which most children love to do. I am sure that by the end of today, all the boys and girls will be done with the task and I will put them up on the board for us all to enjoy.

Do you enjoy colouring mandalas?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2019

(This post is linked to The Escapist Colouring Club. You are welcome to join us and share some colouring work)

Favourite Read of the Month: November 2018

During the month of November, I read 7 books for this year’s Book Pledge, bringing my total for read books this year to 83. I am wondering whether I will be able to read 100 books this year – so near and yet so far! – but that means I will have to read 17 books total. Even though I am on break, I do not think I will manage it. Maybe 90 books.

 

The titles I read in November are listed below. To read my reviews (if you haven’t already), click on the title in the following list:

  1. Beartown by Fredrik Backman – contemporary fiction ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 5 stars
  2. Us Against You by Fredrik Backman – contemporary fiction ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 4 stars
  3. The Silver Queen by Josie Jaffrey – dystopian, fantasy, vampires ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 4 stars
  4. Pride by Ibi Zoboi – young adult, contemporary ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 4 stars
  5. Damsel by Elana K. Arnold – young adult, fantasy ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 5 stars
  6. The Life Lucy Knew by Karma Brown – women’s fiction, contemporary ⭐⭐⭐ 3 stars
  7. Bring Me Back by B. A. Paris – thriller, psychological thriller, suspense ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 4 stars

Reflecting on my choice of reads for the past month, I realise that I have two favourites: Beartown by Fredrik Backman as well as Damsel by Elana K. Arnold. Both novels feature the strength of women and how they find the strength within themselves to change what has been done to them by a man. Even though I love the fantasy novel Damsel, I do choose Beartown to be my book of the month. The novel focuses on so many issues, and it made me feel so many emotions while reading it.

What was your favourite read in November? Share your choice, or the link to your post, below.

Favourite Read of the Month:

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

Favourite Read of the Month: October 2018

During the month of October, I  read 8 books for this year’s Book Pledge, bringing my total for read books this year to 76 books. I may have to up my goal from 75 books this year to 100 🙂

The titles I read in September are listed below. To read my reviews (if you haven’t already), click on the title in the following list:

  1. The Lost Queen by Signe Pike – historical fiction  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐  5 stars
  2. The Wife by Meg Wolitzer – contemporary, women’s fiction  ⭐⭐⭐  3 stars
  3.  Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa – Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐  5 stars
  4. When We Caught Fire by Anna Godbersen – Young Adult fiction, historical, romance ⭐⭐⭐  3 stars
  5. If Not For You by Debbie Macomber – romance, contemporary fiction ⭐⭐  2 stars
  6. Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris – thriller, psychological thriller, mystery ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐  5 stars
  7.  Man of War by Sean Parnell – thriller, military thriller ⭐⭐⭐  3 stars
  8. A Very Large Expanse of Sea by Tahereh Mafi – Young Adult fiction, contemporary fiction ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐  5 stars

Reflecting on my choice of reads for the past month, I would say that I have chosen well. I read so many books that I enjoyed! Two of them, The Lost Queen and Shadow of the Fox, have sequels coming out (hopefully next year). I enjoy both of these genres (historical ad fantasy) and look forward to continuing with the stories. As I have to choose one for my favourite, I would choose Shadow of the Fox. Why? For the humour. Reading the story made me smile, and made me think of the anime that I enjoyed watching with my family a few Christmases ago.

What was your favourite read in October? Share your choice, or the link to your post, below.

Favourite Read of the Month:

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

Favourite Read of the Month: April 2018

During the month of April, I managed to read 7 books for this year’s Book Pledge.

The titles in April are listed below. To read my reviews (if you haven’t already), click on the title in the following list:

  1. Here So Far Away by Hadley Dyer. A YA fiction novel.
  2. My Secret Mother by Phyllis Whitsell. A memoir.
  3. The Good Liar by Catherine McKenzie. A thriller.
  4. Blink by K. L. Slater. A psychological thriller.
  5. The Bookshop on Rosemary Lane. by Ellen Berry. A feel-good novel.
  6. The Little Bakery on Rosemary Lane by Ellen Berry. A feel-good novel.
  7. The Storm by Arif Anwar. A literary type novel.

With the exception of My Secret Mother by Phyllis Whitsell, I enjoyed reading all of the stories I had chosen during the month of April. Looking back, I saw that I had managed to read 7 titles which does suggest that I had read a couple of novels that I could not put down. The Good Liar definitely falls into that category as does Blink. I did enjoy my introduction to Ellen Berry’s writing and savoured her feel-good stories – so much so that I went out and bought the next title in her Rosemary Lane series. I am now eagerly waiting for the next in the series.

For my favourite title this month I cannot help but choose The Bookshop on Rosemary Lane by Ellen Berry. The story may not be as literary as Anwar’s The Storm, or as nail-biting as Slater’s Blink, but I loved it. I moved through the pages quickly, loved the humour in the story, and the connection I felt to the main character. Berry’s story is definitely one I will read again.

What was your favourite read in April? Share your choice, or the link to your post, below.

Favourite Read of the Month:

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

Monster Colouring

The age group that I teach love colouring and always welcome an opportunity to use bright colours. For a recent activity on writing, I asked them to colour and describe a monster. Using the co-created poster of adjectives, they wrote down adjectives of their choice to describe their monsters. .

Not only do I enjoy seeing their colourful monsters, but I love that the children have managed to describe their monsters using the classroom resources in the language that they are learning.

Do you enjoy colouring with markers?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to The Escapist Colouring Club. You are welcome to join us and share some colouring work)

The Changing Seasons: March 2018

March began with a reminder that Winter had not yet said its goodbyes. The last days in February were mild and spring-like; the first evening brought with it gently falling snow. Walking through the park the next day, I enjoyed the snowscapes and hoped they would be the last I saw this Winter season.

The falling snow on many days during March definitely made me wish to curl up on the sofa with a good book in pajamas. Pajamas were the theme of our spirit day just before March Break and the children came to school in sleepwear. My students brought along their stuffed animals as well to keep them company during the day.

The time after March break passed quickly and, before we knew it, it was the Easter weekend. During the days leading up to the long weekend, I planned a number of building activities in my classroom for the children as a part of the inquiry on structures. They had the opportunity to build bridges with popsicle sticks,

cars with card and wood,

and a structure of their choice with building blocks.

March ended as it began – with cool weather. Snow is not falling but the temperatures are still lower than we would like them to be. Hopefully April will bring with it higher temperatures and thepromise of summer.

What was your March experience?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to The Changing Seasons hosted by Zimmerbitch)

The Changing Seasons: February 2018

During the month of February, we experienced quite a bit of snow. Many mornings when I opened the curtains, I would be greeted by the following scene:

Early Morning Cityscape during Winter © Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

The air outside looked chilly – and it was. Each morning we bundled up in layers and trudged to our destinations. The playground at the school where I work was covered in snow. Icicles dropped down from the eaves. Winter seemed set to stay.

We did enjoy the snow while we had it, though. The crisp air and the pristine whiteness of the winter landscape is always a pleasure to behold.

February is almost over – and it appears that winter may be too. The last few days the temperatures have been mild and the rain has washed away the last remaining snow and ice. I am looking forward to the change and look forward to storing my winter boots.

What weather did you experience during February?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post was inspired by the Monthly Challenge: The Changing Seasons)