Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Thank You Manitoba!

Box of Shocks is the winner of the Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award for 2013!

Thanks to all of the young readers in Manitoba, teachers, teacher-librarians, and everyone else involved in the Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award!

Friday, April 19, 2013


Yes, this is a picture of me.  I am totally shocked to the point of being unable to contain myself and look calmly at the camera.

Do you know why I find myself in such an extreme state?

Check back in a few days, and I'll tell you.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

My Favourite Playground

We discovered this amazing playground just outside of Golden, BC in the Blaeberry.  It's truly a work of art!

Thursday, January 3, 2013


We begin the year in the depths of winter, only a few steps past the solstice .  The lengthening days are reason enough for optimism, anticipation, and even a little confabulation.

May you have a Happy (with a capital H) 2013.

May the year bring unanticipated pleasant surprises.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

This Plus That

Are you curious about the title of this blog post?  You should be.  This Plus That is the title of a great picture book by Amy Rosenthal in which she combines the joys of mathematical equations with language.  For example, here's one I made up:

baby + felt pen + library book = Disaster!

How about another or two?  (Okay, if you insist . . .)

Thanksgiving dinner – Brussels sprouts = Heaven

McMahen + singing – earplugs = painful!

Get the idea?  If you get the urge, how about making some up of your own.  If you have an aversion to math, this is the perfect way to overcome it.

Has your curiosity been quenched?  I hope so.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Fact or Fiction?

At the two schools where I work as a teacher-librarian, we are having a monthly writing challenge for all students.  Our first challenge was called:  "Fact or Fiction."  Another title to this could be "Two Truths and a Lie."  Here's how it works:

Write three statements about yourself.  Two of them are true, while one of them is made up.  Here's my own personal example:

1.  I met Michael Buble at the Vancouver Airport.

2.  I finished third in my age category at the Reino-Keski Salmi ski loppet last year.

3.  I once went swimming in Kalamalka Lake near Vernon in January.

Two are true and one is false.  Can you guess?  Leave a comment below with your guess for which one is not true.

We are encouraging all ages of students to enter, with the little tykes getting help from their parents.  Everyone has about three weeks to enter the challenge.  During this time, entries are read over the P.A. system in the school or at assemblies.  At the end of the challenge, there is a random draw from all the entries for some prizes.

The purpose of the challenge is to get students and their parents involved in a variety of creative writing activities that are challenging and a whole lot of fun.

If you have any questions about this challenge or wish to further discuss this idea, please contact me at my email address:  chrismcmahen@gmail.com.