Monday, March 27, 2017

#road2reading Challenge - what's the rush? 3.28.17

All journeys have a starting place.
This is a weekly place to find books and tools 
that you may use with readers at the start of their reading journey.
Join in the conversation at #road2reading.

I feel like more than ever, there really are some great middle grade novels being published.  So often I read them and then I'm sad.  Because the readers at my school are not ready for those books yet.  My school is kindergarten through 4th grade.  And what is hard to sometimes remember, is that 4th grade students are nine and ten years old.  They have a decade of life experiences.  Why are we always rushing them to grow up and have them reading novels that, although are amazing, are not always appropriate?  I am guilty of this too.  Every year as I plan our Mock Newbery list, there are books that I know are probably going to win, but maybe aren't the best for this particular age.  Do I put them on the list, or hold off?  It's a decision I always try to go over in my head.

Readers also need to have a transition into longer middle grade books.  They need a chance to build their stamina.  That might mean they are finishing books really fast.  But... allowing readers time to get comfortable reading longer books.  Getting comfortable holding an idea - or even multiple story strands - across a novel.  Allowing readers to have a chance to build their repertoire of books read.  By doing these things, the transition to middle grade novels will be smooth and seamless.

When I think about readers, particularly those in second and third grade, there are many books that fit these readers, yet are not often in classroom libraries.  Take a look at this list, what do you have?  Missing anything?  Add some of these to your wish list or library list!

The Case of the Missing Tiger's Eye (Rider Woofson)     The Rival Detective (Rider Woofson Book 5)     The Soccer Ball Monster Mystery (Rider Woofson Book 6)
"Rider Woofson" series by Walker Styles

Dory Fantasmagory     Dory and the Real True Friend     Dory Fantasmagory: Dory Dory Black Sheep
"Dory Fantasmagory" series by Abby Hanlon

The Princess in Black (The Princess in Black, #1)     The Princess in Black and the Perfect Princess Party (The Princess in Black, #2)     The Princess in Black and the Hungry Bunny Horde (The Princess in Black, #3)
"Princess in Black" series by Shannon Hale

Rise of the Balloon Goons (The Notebook of Doom, #1)     Rumble of the Coaster Ghost (The Notebook of Doom, #9)     Snap of the Super-Goop (The Notebook of Doom, #10)
"Notebook of Doom" series by Troy Cummings

Stowaway! (Puppy Pirates, #1)     Catnapped! (Puppy Pirates #3)     Sea Sick (Puppy Pirates #4)
"Puppy Pirates" series by Erin Soderberg

Piper Green and the Fairy Tree     Too Much Good Luck (Piper Green and the Fairy Tree)     Going Places (Piper Green and the Fairy Tree)
"Piper Green" series by Ellen Potter

Lola Levine Is Not Mean!     Lola Levine: Drama Queen     Lola Levine Meets Jelly and Bean
"Lola Levine" series by Monica Brown

Eva's Treetop Festival (Owl Diaries #1)     A Woodland Wedding (Owl Diaries #3)     Warm Hearts Day: A Branches Book (Owl Diaries #5)
"Owl Diaries" series by Rebecca Elliott

Posy the Puppy (Dr. KittyCat, #1)     Clover the Bunny (Dr. KittyCat Is Ready to Rescue, #2)     Daisy the Kitten (Dr. KittyCat, #3)
"Dr. Kitty Cat" series by Jane Clarke

Inspector Flytrap     Inspector Flytrap in The President's Mane Is Missing     Inspector Flytrap in the Goat Who Chewed Too Much
"Inspector Flytrap" series by Tom Angleberger and Cece Bell

Captain Awesome to the Rescue!     Captain Awesome, Soccer Star     Captain Awesome Has the Best Snow Day Ever?
"Captain Awesome" series by Stan Kirby

The Bad Guys: Episode 1     The Bad Guys: Episode 2: Mission Unpluckable     The Bad Guys: Episode 3: The Furball Strikes Again
"The Bad Guys" series by Aaron Blabey

Mr. Pants: It's Go Time!     Mr. Pants: Trick or Feet!     Mr. Pants: Slacks, Camera, Action!
"Mr. Pants" series by Scott McCormick

The Big Move (Commander in Cheese, #1)     Oval Office Escape (Commander in Cheese, #2)     Have a Mice Flight! (Commander in Cheese #3)
"Commander in Cheese" series by Lindsey Leavitt

I really enjoy all of these series and know they are a hit for second and third graders.  I would have them available for students kindergarten through fourth grade because everyone is on their own path to reading.  We want to make sure we have books that are matches for all readers!

Be sure to visit Alyson's post filled with more books for readers who are beginning their reading journey.

What series do you love passing on to transitional readers?  Share your favorites in the comments.  Or, do you have a post or a Goodreads shelf of transitional chapter books?  Link it up below!


  1. Such a fantastic list! (I really love Dory.) The interesting thing about this list to me is how few of these books are also in public libraries. I have cards at 3, and I just checked all these series. Only Piper, Dory, and Princess are in my libraries. And that makes me think about how our classroom and public libraries are not being very intentional about providing the books that transitional boy readers need to hook them on reading and keep them hooked.

  2. I'm familiar with most of these series, but there are a few that are new to me, too - I haven't seen Commander in Cheese before, or the Piper series, which looks super cute!