Summer Reading

Summer vacation is a time for fun! Choose some books from the HCPL suggested Summer Reading lists to read and enjoy.

The only expectation is that students DO READ—read what they want to read, exploring the topics that fire their interests and fuel their imaginations. Have a wonderful summer…full of adventures and incredible stories!

Join the HCPL Summer Reading Program!

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Civil War Stations for 4th Grade Students

4th grade students interacted with Civil War memorabilia to make their learning about the US Civil War come to life.  The “Civil War Trunk” came to SPES for two weeks from the Tredegar Ironworks Civil War Museum.  The library was transformed into a hands-on museum.

Students rotated through 4 stations consisting of Civil War clothing, Civil War accoutrements, Civil War pastimes and Civil War letters.  The stations also provided present day items to make comparisons.

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5th Grade Southeast Books Using Book Creator

Ms. Blackburn’s 5th grade students collaborated in small groups to develop a plot summary for their literature circle book set in the Southeast region of the US.

Students then created “a book” on the Book Creator website.  Their “books” were compiled into one Southeast Region book.

Enjoy The Final Southeast Region book!


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Author/Illustrator Cece Bell Meets with 1st Grade Students in Google Hangouts!

What a collaborative effort!

  • 1st grade teachers and Mrs. Strait read Cece Bell’s picture books to all first grade students!
  • Mrs. Cogbill, our art teacher, helped students create a “Sock Monkey” puppet for the visit!
  • Mr. Favale and Mrs. Strait connected beforehand in Google Hangouts to make sure all technology was working.
  • Students brainstormed questions for Cece Bell during their library lesson.
  • Practiced with Cece Bell in Google Hangouts the morning of the visit.

We had a wonderful visit with VA author/illustrator Cece Bell in Google Hangouts.  She told us about her picture books and chapter books, the title of her new book, how she writes and draws.  She answered student questions and drew a pictures of their favorite animals.

Check out the Animoto video of our visit:

Cece Bell visit in Google Hangouts

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Thank You, Mr. Cole!


Thank you, Mr. Cole, for making our One Author, One School event a huge success!

Wow!  Springfield Park students and teachers shout out a big THANK YOU to Mr. Henry Cole for his entertaining and instructive author/illustrator presentation.  Students were engaged, excited, entertained, and wowed by Mr. Cole’s presentation.  His passion for writing and drawing inspired students to check-out and read his books.


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Celebrating Black History Month! Read the 5th Grade Flipbooks!

5th grade students reported on African American men and women from the present and past who have made a significant difference in our society.  These men and women forged paths for others to follow.  They are true trailblazers.  Each pair of students gave their report on the morning announcements throughout the month of February.

Enjoy reading our 2 “African American Trailblazers” flipbooks made with Flipsnack.



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One Author One School Event: Henry Cole

Author/Illustrator Henry Cole will visit K-5 students at SPES on Monday, March 12th.  Virginia native Henry Cole has illustrated over 90 picture books as well as written and illustrated five chapter books for children.  Check out his website!

A selection of Henry Cole books will be available for purchase through bbgb bookstore’s website starting February 12th through March 1st.

Use the coupon code SPES15 to receive a 15% discount when ordering!

Henry Cole will sign purchased books.

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Revolutionary War Research

4th grade students will research people and battles of the American Revolutionary War.

Click on The American Revolutionary War to access databases and websites for the research.




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January Highlights

K-2 students learned about the Caldecott Book Award given to illustrators for excellent  illustrations in a children’s book.  Some of our favorites:  They All Saw the Cat by Brendan Wenzel;  Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans; Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak; & One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo.

3rd grade students had fun with “Functional Non-Fiction” stations (real world reading).  They read maps, menus, cook books, craft books, calendars and food labels.

4th grade students learned about Force, Energy and Motion by watching a video in Discovery Science Database, graphing speeds of different objects from a non-fiction book and flying paper airplanes.

5th grade students researched African American trailblazers in our Britannica and PebbleGo databases.  Student pairs will share their report and photograph on the morning announcements throughout the month of February as we celebrate Black History Month.

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November Highlights

  • K students predicted events in Fiction books.  They sang our “author” and “illustrator” songs to remember what each person does for a book.  Our favorite book was Move Over, Rover by Karen Beaumont.
  • 1st grade students recalled the beginning, middle and end events for Fiction books.  Our favorite story was Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein.
  • 2nd grade students used our PebbleGo database to find true facts about the life of Crazy Horse, a Lakota Indian.
  • 3rd grade students used an ebook, Sea Turtles by Laura Marsh, from our National Geographic Kids database to discover true facts about sea turtles and search for non-fiction text features.
  • 4th grade students completed Jamestown stations.  They found true facts in a History Channel video, a Jamestown timeline poster and a Jamestown online adventure game.
  • 5th grade students learned about “Narrative Non-Fiction” books by exploring the story elements and true facts in Boys of Steel:  the Creators of Superman by Marc Tyler Nobleman.
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