Lucha Libros Battle: Winter of the Ice Wizard


We had some great guest scorekeepers at our Lucha Libros battle last night.  One of them was our new Library Director, Michelle Perera!  She stopped by after work to check out the event and when she saw we were short on people, she jumped in and lent a hand!  A parent also jumped in as a scorekeeper to help us keep things moving quickly.  The turnout was pretty good considering that it was still PUSD’s Winter Break.  We had a total of approximately 93 people.  37 luchadores came to participate in answering questions about the book Winter of the Ice Wizard / El invierno del hechicero del hielo by Mary Pope Osborne.  The last half of the questions were answered correctly almost unanimously!  I think these kids are getting too smart for me.



Our most popular prize last night: This weird Siamese twin rubber ducky!  The kids were crazy about this prize, trying to get the last few we had in our Two-Ticket Treasure Chest.




As always my personal favorite part of the program is the open-ended questions at the end.  I go around the room with a microphone and invite the kids to tell everyone what they think in response to the themes of the book.  In this month’s book, there is this “Frost Giant” character whom Jack and Annie are terrified of, and he turns out to be quite different from what they expected.  We had a lively discussion about why, as Morgan explains to Jack and Annie, people sometimes make the world seem scarier than it really is.  Kids brought up reasons like:

  • Because those people are scared and want everyone else to be scared too
  • Because they think they’re helping
  • Because they might just be exaggerating to keep you safe
  • Because they might be trying to keep you from learning the truth
  • Because they like knowing something you don’t
  • Because it gives them power over you

I love it–I’m convinced that the kids are embracing literacy not just for prizes but for the intrinsic benefits of learning, thinking and being both engaged and entertained!

Would you like to find out more about our Lucha Libros reading program for 2nd and 3rd graders?  We recently had about four spots open up.  If you call AnnMarie Hurtado at 626-744-4725 you can sign up to join our next battle!



AnnMarie Kolakowski

I'm a youth services librarian currently working at the Lamanda Park Branch Library while Central Library is closed for seismic repairs. I purchase juvenile fiction for grades 2-8, and some foreign languages. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including 3 regular book clubs (Windows and Mirrors, Read Around the World, and Lucha Libros), as well as writing workshops and STEAM/science programs. I also Infant/Toddler Storytimes and Preschool Storytimes, and outreach to local area preschools. I love what I do, working with kids of all ages to inspire them to learn and use their curiosity and imaginations. Outside of my work at the library, I am also the author of a book on creative writing activities for kids.

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