Saturday, June 06, 2015

Book Review: We Are All Made of Molecules

WE ARE ALL MADE OF MOLECULES by Susin Nielsen is an authentic work of realistic fiction examining an emerging, 21st century blended family.
Thirteen-year-old Stewart and fourteen-year-old Ashley are thrown together when their parents decide to move in together. Their story is told through alternating chapters that feature nerdy Stewart and bitchy Ashley describing their frustrations dealing with this new arrangement and their encounters with family and friends. Along the way, the story incorporates timely characters including a gay father, a complex bully, and multifaceted friends.
Nielsen’s well-written story combines humor with realistic situations to create a convincing, positive tale for today’s teens. She’s successful at making her story uplifting without becoming preachy.
Librarians will find a broad audience for this funny, yet moving young adult novel. Nielsen’s work is a welcome relief to the many heavy YA realistic fiction books published this year. Add it to your list of lighter summer reads.
Learn more about the author at
Published by Wendy Lamb Books and Random House Teens on May 12, 2015.

Website Review: Occupational Outlook Handbook

The OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK (OOH) from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is an online reference resource containing career information about hundreds of occupations.
The entry page contains a list of occupations organized into groups such as healthcare and legal. Users can also select occupations by median pay, entry-level education, on-the-job training, number of new jobs projected, and growth rather projection. In addition, options are provided to browse the A-Z index and explore occupations by highest paying, fastest growing, and most new jobs. Finally, users can explore FAQs, the glossary, a teacher’s guide, and career outlook.
The “Occupation Finder” provides a master list of 580 entries with tools to narrow the search by education, training, projected new jobs, projected growth, and median pay. A key word search is also available.
Each career profile contains a summary, what they do, work environment, how to become one, pay, job outlook, similar occupations, and more information.
This easy-to-use website is a great resource for informational reading activities. It’s also a excellent way to jumpstart a career exploration project. A Teachers Guide provides ideas for how the website might be used. It also links to other websites with career information.
Most libraries have a print copy of the OOH in their reference section, however the website provides an effective resource for a whole-class experience.
To learn more, go to the website at