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(all books are from the library unless noted otherwise)
3. Jonathan and the Big Blue Boat by Philip Stead
Michigan author, wrote about a boy who goes to sea hunting for his missing teddy bear. Cute adventure story with collage pictures. The pictures could be a little confusing because of the collages, but the stamps, maps, etc. that were used help tell the story.
good mentor text for personal narrative that became an imaginary story.
4. The Dark by Lemony Snicket
Great book about overcoming a fear. I was worried it would be scary, but it was realistic. The descriptions were wonderful.
"At night, of course, the dark went out and spread itself against the windows and doors of Laszlo's house. But in the morning the dark would be back in the basement, where it belonged."
8. Max and Marla by Alexandria Boiger
Max and Marla are best friends and "real-life, honest to goodness, cross your heart, W-i-n-t-e-r O-l-y-m-p-i-c-s Olympians".
A story about never giving up on your dream, no matter the difficulty. Cute!
10. The Darkest Dark by Chris Hadfield
I've become a fan of Chris Hadfield, starting with his you-tube videos from his time on the space station. My students love the peek into life in space. This book is an autobiographical look at how and when he became interested in exploring space. I'll definitely read this to my students this year- overcoming fears, working hard toward a goal, curiosity are all topics addressed.
11. Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall
Jabari decides today is the day to jump from the diving board, but fear makes him wary.
Loved, loved this book! It caught my eye at the library because I spent plenty of time under the diving board at my high school, trying to coax little ones off the end during swim lessons. The way Jabari's dad helps him and the strategies Jabari uses to overcome his fears made me cheer for the characters. The illustrations are wonderful. Might have to put this on the buy list.
12. Over and Under the Pond by Kate Messner
Beautiful book about pond life. A mother and son are canoeing in a pond and noticing the wildlife around them. Pictures are gorgeous- I was drawn in by the color palette but I also appreciate the style. The end includes information on many animals featured in the book. This book would be an excellent model for word choice, and combining personal narrative with information.
15. Guji Guji by Chih-Yuan Chen
A crocodile egg rolls into a goose nest. Guji Guji is raised like a goose but must eventually figure out who he is. This is a storyline I've seen before in other books, but it's still a good story. Guji Guju handles himself with maturity when he must decide who to favor- the crocodiles who look like him or the geese who are his family.
17. Dragon Masters: Rise of the Earth Dragon by Tracey West
Drake is unexpectedly taken from his family to the castle, where he finds he's been recruited as a Dragon Master. He gets to know his dragon, learns from a wizard, and tries to make new friends in his new castle life. 90pg. chapter book. I'm really unfamiliar with a lot of the kids' chapter books, so I'm trying out some series to see what they're like. It's not perfect but it's an interesting story with a character who has some real emotions, faces tough choices and grows as a person in the book.
18. 13 Words by Lemony Snicket
A ridiculous, nonsense story using 13 words, which are listed at the beginning. It's not my favorite book, personally, but I like it as an idea for a writing prompt/story starter. Pick 13 words, write a story with them (this book kind of reads like that's how it was written :-) ). A lot of kids would find this book funny, and the writing prompt idea a way to write some pretty imaginative stuff.
19. Rah, Rah, Radishes! by April Pulley Sayre
This book features photographs with a rhythmic chant, all about vegetables. Written to a younger crowd than my second-graders, but they could find value with it as a reference for vegetables they may not be familiar with, and also as a model for a "chant". We often hear chants but don't often see them written.