Blog Posts

Clean Getaway by Nic Stone

Clean Getaway, acclaimed Dear Martin author Nic Stone's debut middle grade novel, is sure to be a hit in schools this year. William "Scoob" Lamar embarks on an adventure of a lifetime with his Grandma, G'ma. As he leaves his single dad behind, Scoob has no idea what will be in store. His traveling adventures… Continue reading Clean Getaway by Nic Stone

Blog Posts

Going Up by Sherry Lee

Going Up by Sherry Lee reviewed by Susan Kennedy As we are going back to school in whatever form that is taking, hopefully we are returning to writing. I love writing with students and hearing them storytell their narrative plans. Returning to school this fall, I hope we'll start with some narratives: small moments, memoirs,… Continue reading Going Up by Sherry Lee

Blog Posts

The Star Outside My Window by Onjali Q. Rauf

As soon as one of my sixth grade book clubs finished The Boy in the Back of the Class by Onjali Q Rauf, they immediately took to the internet to find other books by the same author.  When they found The Star Outside My Window, they begged me to order it right away! Student Thoughts:… Continue reading The Star Outside My Window by Onjali Q. Rauf

Blog Posts

Bilal Cooks Daal written by Aisha Saeed and illustrated by Anoosha Syed

In a hurry up society, Bilal's friends are at first confused by the long wait that daal entails. As the day goes on and Bilal and his friends try to wait patiently Bilal is excited, then nervous to share his favorite food. I was surprised that some of my students had not had daal, but… Continue reading Bilal Cooks Daal written by Aisha Saeed and illustrated by Anoosha Syed

Blog Posts

Eventown by Corey Ann Haydu

*I would like to use this post to thank all the authors and publishers who have stepped up and allowed teachers to read their books online during this unprecedented time...We appreciate you!  Teacher's Story: I leave school on a Friday, having started the first few chapters of Eventown, by Corey Ann Haydu. On Saturday, I discover that… Continue reading Eventown by Corey Ann Haydu

Blog Posts

Some Places More Than Others by Renée Watson

Some Places More Than Others by Renée Watson An advance copy of this book made it into my hands from our local independent bookstore last spring.  I immediately loved it!  Always on the lookout for a book that fits the complexity we hope for our upper elementary readers without being too mature for them, Some… Continue reading Some Places More Than Others by Renée Watson

Blog Posts

The Season of Styx Malone by Kekla Magoon

Styx came to us like magic—the really, really powerful kind. There was no grand puff of smoke or anything, but he appeared as if from nowhere, right in our very own woods. The Season of Styx Malone begins with brothers Caleb and Bobby Gene inadvertently trading their baby sister for a bag of fireworks which… Continue reading The Season of Styx Malone by Kekla Magoon

Blog Posts

Camp by Kayla Miller

Graphic Novels ~ As teachers we hear so much about them.  Many parents (and some educators) feel that graphic novels “don’t count” as reading.  I couldn’t disagree more. There are many, many benefits to reading this type of book. Some benefits that I have found are: Inferring - this is perhaps the biggest benefit to… Continue reading Camp by Kayla Miller

Blog Posts

When Aidan Became a Brother written by Kyle Lukoff and illustrated by Kaylani Juanita

When Aidan Became a Brother written by Kyle Lukoff and illustrated by Kaylani Juanita   “That can’t be right, it says ‘When Aidan Became a Brother’ and that is a girl on the cover,” Z said. “Boys can have hair like that,” L responded.   I knew that this was a potentially challenging book, but… Continue reading When Aidan Became a Brother written by Kyle Lukoff and illustrated by Kaylani Juanita

Blog Posts

Give and Take by Elly Swartz

You don't want to lose the things or people that leave imprints on your heart.--Elly Swartz Maggie: A twelve-year-old girl who describes herself as someone who cannot love in small doses. She has been missing Nana since Forgot-Me Day, hoping to adopt Izzie as her little sister for keeps, and longs for her trap-shooting team… Continue reading Give and Take by Elly Swartz

Blog Posts

Caterpillar Summer by Gillian McDunn

On a good day, Chicken liked to wander.  On a bad day, Chicken would bolt. But no matter what, Cat loved him as wide as the Golden Gate Bridge, as deep as the sea floor, and as fierce as a shark bite. Sixth Grade Book Club Members Think... Caterpillar Summer is a wonderful, figurative language… Continue reading Caterpillar Summer by Gillian McDunn

Blog Posts

Carmela Full of Wishes

She stared down at the dandelion in her hand.It seemed so much more importantnow that she knew it was a place to put her wishes. What if she made the wrong choice? Carmela is excited to accompany her older brother into town for the first time. Although her big brother isn't happy to have her,… Continue reading Carmela Full of Wishes

Blog Posts

The Field

  The Field by Baptiste Paul,  illustrated beautifully by Jacqueline Alcantara A winner of many awards in 2018,  The Field shows and tells the story of a girl, her brother and some friends as they pick up a soccer game in rural St. Lucia, the author's home of origin.  Through stunning illustrations full of movement… Continue reading The Field

Blog Posts

Stella Diaz Has Something to Say by Angela Dominguez

Teacher Thoughts: When I got my copy of Stella Diaz Has Something to Say, I included it at the last minute to our read aloud vote versus Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan and Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan. To my surprise, it won. The themes of having a best friend end up in a… Continue reading Stella Diaz Has Something to Say by Angela Dominguez

Blog Posts

Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga

Every once in a while a book lands in your hands at the exact right moment and you thank the book universe for its delivery. Other Words for Home, Jasmine Warga's first novel for middle grade readers, does just that. Written in verse, this story is a tale of a young girl, Jude, leaving her… Continue reading Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga

Blog Posts

The Many Colors of Harpreet Singh by Supriya Kelkar, Illustrated by Alea Marley

The Many Colors of Harpreet Singh has been a favorite read aloud as I’ve visited K-2 classrooms this fall. Harpreet is a school-aged boy who wears a small turban, called a patka, in the tradition of the Sikh religion. Harpreet changes the colors of his patka based on his mood - pink for celebrating, red… Continue reading The Many Colors of Harpreet Singh by Supriya Kelkar, Illustrated by Alea Marley

Blog Posts

Brave

by Svetlana Chmakova Teacher Thoughts… This graphic novel is a perfect way to teach older students about the challenges of middle school. Readers learn how being brave and using their voice can help change a negative school culture.  Your students will love how Svetlana Chmakova compares middle school to a video game, mean kids to… Continue reading Brave

Blog Posts

Mae’s First Day of School by Kate Berube

There’s a quiet to Kate Berube’s books that holds young listeners in a state of wonder. Mae is not going to school today, no matter what her mother, father, or other parents on the playground say to persuade her. But when she scurries into a tree to hide from the opening bell, she learns that… Continue reading Mae’s First Day of School by Kate Berube

Blog Posts

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