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The Journey by Francesca Sanna

Francesca Sanna’s The Journey is a beautiful, powerful book that delivers a timely message to readers.  It describes the journey of a brave family who must flee from their home to escape a war.  Francesca Sanna created this picture book after interviewing refugees in Italy. Educators can use this book to teach a variety of… Continue reading The Journey by Francesca Sanna

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Online Resource: TrueFlix from Scholastic

I thought I would share an online resource that I have been using effectively with my fifth graders - TrueFlix from Scholastic.  https://www.scholastic.com/digital/trueflix.htm As you can see, they are offering a free trial.  The reading level has been perfect for my fifth graders, and each book is accompanied by an informative video.  There is an… Continue reading Online Resource: TrueFlix from Scholastic

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Penguin Flies Home by Lita Judge

Even fifth graders can’t help but love a penguin story, especially when the penguin has “the soul of an eagle!”  This is Lita Judge’s sequel to Flight School, which is another one of my favorite picture books.  She creates amusing stories that teach wonderful life lessons.  The theme of this book is friendship. It could… Continue reading Penguin Flies Home by Lita Judge

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16 Words: William Carlos Williams & “The Red Wheelbarrow” by Lisa Rogers and Chuck Groenink

We read this book during a poetry unit.  I assigned students to Poet Clubs where they read and analyzed poems by a certain poet.  One of the poets the students studied was William Carlos Williams. This lovely book was a perfect model for showing students how to infer the meaning of a poem and the… Continue reading 16 Words: William Carlos Williams & “The Red Wheelbarrow” by Lisa Rogers and Chuck Groenink

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Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson and illustrated by Frank Morrison

I must admit that I didn’t know about the Children’s Crusade of 1963 until I read this book.  I was awed by the commitment and bravery of these children who marched in protest of segregation and significantly impacted the Civil Rights Movement.  Martin Luther King reflected on this event writing, “Looking back, it is clear… Continue reading Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson and illustrated by Frank Morrison

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Auntie Luce’s Talking Paintings by Francie Latour and Ken Daley

Ken Daley’s illustrations in this book immediately grabbed my students’ attention.  They wanted to know if Haiti really looked like the pictures. They were captivated further by Francie Latour’s story of a girl who travels from the United States to Haiti to visit her aunt, a painter.  As she experiences the sights, sounds, colors, history,… Continue reading Auntie Luce’s Talking Paintings by Francie Latour and Ken Daley

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Our House Is On Fire: Greta Thunberg’s Call to Save the Planet by Jeanette Winter

This picture book is a perfect introduction to Greta Thunberg, the sixteen-year-old, Swedish climate activist who is making her voice heard on the global stage.  My fifth grade students connected immediately to Greta. They were inspired by her. In fact, ever since reading about her, they have been creating slideshows detailing ways that they and… Continue reading Our House Is On Fire: Greta Thunberg’s Call to Save the Planet by Jeanette Winter

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I Survived The Great Molasses Flood, 1919 by Lauren Tarshis

Yes, this really happened!  And, if you live in Massachusetts, it happened close to home - in the North End of Boston!  This tragic event was caused by negligence on the part of the company who owned the molasses tank, United States Industrial Alcohol.  For the first time in American history, a company had to… Continue reading I Survived The Great Molasses Flood, 1919 by Lauren Tarshis

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Good Rosie! by Kate DiCamillo and Harry Bliss

Teacher Thoughts… It is impossible not to love Kate DiCamillo and adorable dog characters!  Rosie is lonely, but she is also hesitant to try anything new. Her owner, George, takes her to the dog park, and after a couple of false starts, she makes friends with two other dogs. This delightful book is perfect to… Continue reading Good Rosie! by Kate DiCamillo and Harry Bliss

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Saving Winslow by Sharon Creech

Teacher Thoughts… You will fall in love with Louie and his family and friends as they come together to save Winslow, a sick, newborn donkey.  Winslow connects all of the characters and caring for him helps them to work through difficult situations in their own lives. Once again, Sharon Creech creates vivid characters.  Her descriptions… Continue reading Saving Winslow by Sharon Creech