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June 10, 2016 My Summer Book List: Read Now, Discuss in September By Rhonda Stewart
Grades 3–5, 6–8

    I have been sharing my summer reading lists for the past few years in my posts, "Summer Reading — It's Not Just for Kids" and "Summer Reading — It’s (Still) Not Just for Kids." It's now becoming a tradition for me to expose what books will be in my beach bag, the train, the plane, or even in my backyard while sipping some cool iced tea. There’s always a book and I always include several books my students will be reading so we can kick off the new school year with conversations about what we read over summer vacation.

    I enjoy the process of creating my vacation reading list. While I usually get recommendations from my students and colleagues, this year some titles came out of unexpected circumstances (such as one lonely book on the shelf). Let me know if I missed one that's on your reading list and I'll see if I have room to pack that one too!

     

    Presenting Rhonda’s 2016 Summer Reading List

     

    A Girl Named Disaster by Nancy Farmer

    This came as a recommendation from the May 2016 issue of Scholastic Scope magazine. The Scope article focused on a village in Africa and their struggle with a limited resource: water. In A Girl Named Disaster, the protagonist, Nhamo, lives in a village in Mozambique. She must deal with going against tribal traditions and losing the only family she has ever known in order to escape a way of life that would bring pain and sadness. Will she be able to face the challenges ahead on her journey to a better life? I am rooting for her.

     

     

     

     

    Revolution by Deborah Wiles

    I was reminded of this book while attending a recent professional development workshop. This is the second book in The Sixties Trilogy by Wiles. The first book in the series, Countdown, is a reflection of living in the sixties during the Cold War.

    Revolution, also written as historical fiction, focuses on the events during the struggle for civil rights in the sixties. Being a child of this time period, I am sure I will be able to make many text-to-self and text-to-world connections.

     

     

     

     

     

    A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd

    This book has been sitting on the shelf just waiting for a reader. I thought the cover would grab the attention of some of the readers in my room (triple-scoop ice cream cone!), but no takers.

    The protagonist, Felicity, loves words. Words bring her comfort especially since she is always moving from place to place and having to make new friends. I am looking for a new read-aloud for September and hoping to use this book to model narrative writing.

     

     

     

     

     

    The Crossover by Kwame Alexander

    This came teacher recommended. I am always on the lookout for books for the boys in my classroom, especially for the unmotivated and reluctant reader. The cover of this book, a young man with a basketball in his hands, is very eye-catching. Sports are usually a buy-in for my male students. We are ready for other sportswriters beyond the popular Matt Christopher and Mike Lupica.

    Alexander tells the story of an athlete and his sport through poetry. Maybe this book will be the one to unlock reading for my male students?

     

     

     

     

    I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives by Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda with Liz Welch

    I am taking a chance on this book — one from a recent Scholastic Reading Club flyer with a really interesting sounding blurb. This will be the second year that I am including a memoir as a part of my summer reading.

    This book chronicles the correspondence of two pen pals: a young lady from Pennsylvania and a young man from Zimbabwe. Their correspondence spanned over six years. Maybe this will give birth to a pen pal writing project with my classes in September.

     

     

     

     

     

    Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories by R. J. Palacio

    This was a student recommendation and I quote, “Mrs. Stewart, if you really enjoyed reading Wonder, you will really love reading Auggie & Me. It gives you some insight about the characters in the book based on some of the events that happened to Auggie!” That was probably one of the most enthusiastic recommendations that I have received all year and that was enough for me to add it to my summer reading list.

     

     

     

     

     

    The BFG by Roald Dahl

    This book is being made into a movie. I want to see the movie, but I need to read the book first. I like to be able to see where the screenwriters and directors have taken poetic license with a book when interpreting for film. The particular copy of this book has seen some better days in our classroom library. One could infer that students really enjoy this story about the Big Friendly Giant!

     

     

     

    And last but not least, hot off the presses…

    Raymie Nightingale by Kate DiCamillo

    I am a fan of DiCamillo. I have read two of her other books, Because of Winn Dixie and The Tale of Despereaux. My students seem to love her as well.

    The protagonist, Raymie, must come to terms with her parent’s divorce. This topic fits well in our social issues unit.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Pearls of Wisdom — Looking for resources to help with summer reading? Try these free resources and great ideas on the Scholastic Keep Kids Reading All Summer Long collection.

    Thank you for sharing your ideas this school year with me! Enjoy your summer and see you when school begins!

    I have been sharing my summer reading lists for the past few years in my posts, "Summer Reading — It's Not Just for Kids" and "Summer Reading — It’s (Still) Not Just for Kids." It's now becoming a tradition for me to expose what books will be in my beach bag, the train, the plane, or even in my backyard while sipping some cool iced tea. There’s always a book and I always include several books my students will be reading so we can kick off the new school year with conversations about what we read over summer vacation.

    I enjoy the process of creating my vacation reading list. While I usually get recommendations from my students and colleagues, this year some titles came out of unexpected circumstances (such as one lonely book on the shelf). Let me know if I missed one that's on your reading list and I'll see if I have room to pack that one too!

     

    Presenting Rhonda’s 2016 Summer Reading List

     

    A Girl Named Disaster by Nancy Farmer

    This came as a recommendation from the May 2016 issue of Scholastic Scope magazine. The Scope article focused on a village in Africa and their struggle with a limited resource: water. In A Girl Named Disaster, the protagonist, Nhamo, lives in a village in Mozambique. She must deal with going against tribal traditions and losing the only family she has ever known in order to escape a way of life that would bring pain and sadness. Will she be able to face the challenges ahead on her journey to a better life? I am rooting for her.

     

     

     

     

    Revolution by Deborah Wiles

    I was reminded of this book while attending a recent professional development workshop. This is the second book in The Sixties Trilogy by Wiles. The first book in the series, Countdown, is a reflection of living in the sixties during the Cold War.

    Revolution, also written as historical fiction, focuses on the events during the struggle for civil rights in the sixties. Being a child of this time period, I am sure I will be able to make many text-to-self and text-to-world connections.

     

     

     

     

     

    A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd

    This book has been sitting on the shelf just waiting for a reader. I thought the cover would grab the attention of some of the readers in my room (triple-scoop ice cream cone!), but no takers.

    The protagonist, Felicity, loves words. Words bring her comfort especially since she is always moving from place to place and having to make new friends. I am looking for a new read-aloud for September and hoping to use this book to model narrative writing.

     

     

     

     

     

    The Crossover by Kwame Alexander

    This came teacher recommended. I am always on the lookout for books for the boys in my classroom, especially for the unmotivated and reluctant reader. The cover of this book, a young man with a basketball in his hands, is very eye-catching. Sports are usually a buy-in for my male students. We are ready for other sportswriters beyond the popular Matt Christopher and Mike Lupica.

    Alexander tells the story of an athlete and his sport through poetry. Maybe this book will be the one to unlock reading for my male students?

     

     

     

     

    I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives by Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda with Liz Welch

    I am taking a chance on this book — one from a recent Scholastic Reading Club flyer with a really interesting sounding blurb. This will be the second year that I am including a memoir as a part of my summer reading.

    This book chronicles the correspondence of two pen pals: a young lady from Pennsylvania and a young man from Zimbabwe. Their correspondence spanned over six years. Maybe this will give birth to a pen pal writing project with my classes in September.

     

     

     

     

     

    Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories by R. J. Palacio

    This was a student recommendation and I quote, “Mrs. Stewart, if you really enjoyed reading Wonder, you will really love reading Auggie & Me. It gives you some insight about the characters in the book based on some of the events that happened to Auggie!” That was probably one of the most enthusiastic recommendations that I have received all year and that was enough for me to add it to my summer reading list.

     

     

     

     

     

    The BFG by Roald Dahl

    This book is being made into a movie. I want to see the movie, but I need to read the book first. I like to be able to see where the screenwriters and directors have taken poetic license with a book when interpreting for film. The particular copy of this book has seen some better days in our classroom library. One could infer that students really enjoy this story about the Big Friendly Giant!

     

     

     

    And last but not least, hot off the presses…

    Raymie Nightingale by Kate DiCamillo

    I am a fan of DiCamillo. I have read two of her other books, Because of Winn Dixie and The Tale of Despereaux. My students seem to love her as well.

    The protagonist, Raymie, must come to terms with her parent’s divorce. This topic fits well in our social issues unit.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Pearls of Wisdom — Looking for resources to help with summer reading? Try these free resources and great ideas on the Scholastic Keep Kids Reading All Summer Long collection.

    Thank you for sharing your ideas this school year with me! Enjoy your summer and see you when school begins!

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