The Newbery Challenge: Sarah, Plain and Tall

Six facts about 1986: 

*The Space Shuttle Challenge disaster occurred on January 28. 

*Teddy Ruxpin was the best-selling toy. (I loved my Teddy Ruxpin.) 

*Family Ties and Growing Pains were popular television programs. 

*Platoon won Best Picture. 

*"That's What Friends are For" was the most popular song. 

*Sarah, Plain and Tall won the Newbery Medal. 

Head on over to Colby's blog to watch his video. 

Patricia MacLachlan talks about her name. 

"Everything I write about is from my childhood in one way or another." -Patricia MacLachlan 

Becky Anderson sat down with Ms. MacLachlan 

Patricia MacLachlan spent a lot of time in detention. 

A Note from Travis Jonker 

For every attempt so far in the Covering the Newbery series, I do the same thing. I enter keywords from the book into a Flickr creative commons search. After I find an image, I sometimes will have to adjust something in Splashup or Photoshop. Otherwise, I just throw the image into PicMonkey, add text, and call it good. I slavishly stick to this system because:
A: It cuts down on time spent.
B: It ensures that a couple weird ones will make it through.
Sometimes things come together really quickly and look alright, but sometimes we have what occurred with today’s book. Nothing seemed appropriate. Cest la vie. But on we go…


  1. Mr. Schu,

    I was in 4th grade in 1986. I was having lunch in the school cafeteria when a teacher, Mrs. Jones, sat down beside me and gently told me about the Challenger disaster. There were tears in her eyes. I think she came to me b/c she knew how excited I was about a teacher going into space. What a terrible day!

    Two years later, in 6th grade, I had Mrs. Jones for Language Arts. She read Sarah, Plain and Tall aloud to us in class. How I adored that book!

    Now Mrs. Jones is not only my teacher, she is my friend too. I wrote a blog post a while back about an essay assignment she gave me in 6th grade called "Hopes for My Life and World."

    I love your blog, Mr. Schu, and I applaud you for your passion to "put the right book in every child's hand." Books and teachers deeply impact and enrich our lives. Blessings. :)


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