This weekly post comes from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers. It's a great source to find new books to use with your students.
Last Week's Adventures:
What is the biggest impact a teacher can have on a student? Answered here.
Starting Genius Hour? Try reading this pb biography about a small idea that went on to make big changes. Learn more here
Love this new beginning chapter book series.
This week's reading like a writer post using the book Sloth Slept On.
That's (Not) Mine by Anna Kang
I enjoyed Kang and Weyant's Geisel Award winner You Are (Not) Small last year. But this one I think even surpasses it. All kids (and adults) go through the "mine" stage (some stay in it, or go back to it from time to time). This book is relatable in a humorous way that can be used over and over to bring the lesson home. I think this book is a stronger medal contender than their previous book!
The Ok Book and It's Not Fair! by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
I read both of these books to prepare for GRA and I can see why The OK Book will be read in the last week. What a great book to end on! Although the "it's not fair" phrase has been used in my household a lot lately. May need to refer the 10yo to this book....
I Am Lucille Ball by Brad Meltzer
I do like the "Ordinary People Change the World" series. I think it's an interesting way to tell a biography, using some narration, some graphic novel format. And telling the person's story in the first person. I think young readers will learn a little bit about the person and since it's in a narrative format, it's easy to read. I also like the message each book has for its young readers - always about being true to yourself and working hard for what you believe in.
Although those are things that make this series unique, I think it does lack in other areas. Showing the character as a comic, young person throughout the entire biography, even though the book goes through the character's life, can be confusing for young readers. In the graphic novel format, there are liberties taken with the dialogue that again, could also be confusing - discussion of what are real quotes would need to occur. Recently, Meltzer has started adding timelines, real photographs and sources to the end of the books. Those are welcome additions.
I will continue to add these books to my collection and use them for fun reading.
Paper Things by Jennifer Richards Jacobson
Oh, I loved this story. Like The Thing About Jellyfish which I read earlier this month, both books feature protagonists that find themselves in uncomfortable situations that are out of their control. When the writing is as well-down as it is in both of these novels, you feel your heart reach out to the characters in a way that draws you into the story and you think about them long after the book ends. Just gorgeous.
Read Between the Lines by Jo Knowles
I've always enjoyed books that have multiple narrators that center around the same event. It's a true testament to the author's talent to make you think about one event/idea in multiple perspectives. Knowles pulls this off well and I enjoyed seeing how the stories came together. Some people you saw in multi-faceted ways, others were one dimensional. The only one I was confused about was the last story. It was told in a different POV and I didn't connect to it the same way.
As I added this book on goodreads, I read the beginning of the review that asked "does anyone ever see us for who we really are?" I had not kept that question in my head as I read, and now I can't stop thinking about it. It's a question I want to explore as I talk more about this book.
Did you read this book too? Join our informal Twitter chat this Wednesday at 9pm EST. We'll be using the hashtag #RBTLchat.
I am getting ready for our upcoming Scholastic Book Fair by reading some of the books that will be featured:
Crimebiters! by Tommy Greenwald
Upside Down Magic by Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle and Emily Jenkins
Moving Target by Christina Diaz Gonzalez