The 2011 OOMies: The awards go to…

Awards season is coming up, and so of course is the New Year — traditionally a time when everyone looks back and remembers their favorite parts of the year that’s passing. So we decided to combine the two, and came up with the OOMies — our version of the Emmys!

We scoured the year in OOM posts and picked out some entries we think are worth taking a second (or third, or seventh) look at, either because they’re really smart, or really funny, or really important. So, we officially present you with: the 2011 OOMies!

Drumroll please…


OOM’s top 10 posts of 2011

Actual shot of our editorial calendar.

What a year it’s been for us here on the Scholastic blog!

We underwent a massive redesign (going from this to this), doubled our number of bloggers to 12, upped our posts from one a day to two to four…and it’s all because of you, our readers, who engage with us, inspire us, correct us, teach us, and help us in our mission of getting kids to learn to read and love to read.

THANK YOU from the bottom of our OOM hearts.

There’s no better time of year than now to look back, so we thought we’d show you our top 10 most read posts of the year — truly a showcase of the diversity of our readers.

It’s no surprise that it was a big year for The Hunger Games, and our posts reflected that, but as you’ll see, it was also a big year for posts about teachers, libraries, and other books.

Take a look…



Continue reading OOM’s top 10 posts of 2011

Scholastic News Kid Reporters Pick Newsmakers of the Year

2011 has been a year full of news stories, and the Scholastic News Kids Press Corps covered it all — from natural disasters and early election news to protests and huge film premiers. The 59 Kid Reporters weighed in on who they felt were the most newsworthy to create our list of the top five Newsmakers of the Year, and here they are!

Steve Jobs, co-founder and former CEO of Apple, came in at the top of the list. The Kid Reporters listed him not only for his groundbreaking contributions to technology, but also for his work with Pixar Studios which produced many of their favorite films.

Kid Reporters chose Representative Gabrielle Giffords for her courage and strength during her recovery from a horrific shooting in January. They also noted that she received strong support across all political parties during a year when there was little agreed upon. Continue reading Scholastic News Kid Reporters Pick Newsmakers of the Year

Holiday cards and thank you notes, oh my!

You’ve made your lists, you’ve checked them twice and you’re almost there – the holiday season finish line!  But wait, did you send out your holiday cards?! The custom of holiday cards is just one more reason that this is a special time of year as we take an extra minute to send notes to friends, family and coworkers.  Personally, I love the tradition of writing out cards and the excitement of seeing mail from loved ones in my mailbox instead of just credit card offers.  But it can be overwhelming at times as the list of recipients grows and the blank page, even a page as small as a greeting card, threatens with a loss of new words.   I admit that sometimes I find myself wishing for a muse to help me write unique and witty notes. That got me thinking, what if a famous author could write my holiday cards for me?  Who would be my dream pick?

You Are What You Read polled users on which author they would choose and adult book lovers are having trouble deciding between J.K. Rowling and Jane Austen but for kid readers the choice is clear: Dr. Seuss.  I think I pick Dr. Seuss too.  How magical a note from J.K. Rowling would be and how elegant a Jane Austen letter must read but how FUN to receive a holiday wish from Dr. Seuss! Wouldn’t you like to send greetings of the season, for just the simple reason, that your wishes and hopes, as Whos on sleighs fly down slopes, are that your friends and family will be happy the whole year through and their dreams will come true? I would!

Which author would you choose to assist you in sending holiday cheer?



So Chic!

Designer Rachel Roy's sketch for Katniss's fire dress. Image via InStyle

The anticipation is building for the release of The Hunger Games movie.  I realized that even the fashion world is getting excited when I came across this great article from InStyle. They asked famous designers to sketch their designs for Katniss’s epic fire dress. The result? Ten amazing and gorgeous  interpretations.

 This got me thinking – what designers would we want to dress some of our favorite literary characters? Continue reading So Chic!

Topic of the Day: School Holidays

Image via Sam Howzit

For kids in public schools across the country, the holidays can be a bit tricky to navigate. Yesterday, a Superintendent in Saugus, MA made an announcement that members of the local fire department would no longer be allowed to dress up as Santa Claus and visit public schools for the holidays due to the religious implication of the big man in red. The decision was reversed hours later after outraged parents and community members spoke up in defense of the fire department, insisting that Santa fits within the secular guidelines of the school district’s policies.

Situations like this only highlight the fact that upholding respect for the many beliefs and practices that people observe is much easier said than done. Over the years, there have been many controversies and debates over the presence of holidays in public schools and what is and isn’t allowed in terms of celebration. I asked my fellow OOMers to share their experiences, which were surprisingly similar. Continue reading Topic of the Day: School Holidays