Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson is an exceptional book about six students who are placed in an experimental class during their 5th/6th grade years. The teacher decides that the last hour of each Friday will be ‘talk time.’ She takes them to an empty classroom and leaves the six alone. Slowly the students open up and talk about their troubles.
Authorities take Esteban’s father and move him to Florida where he will be deported. Continue Reading
If you are looking to add some high interest activities to your lessons this Christmas season, try using animated shorts to teach reading and writing skills.
This post contains a sample of my new product “Using Animated Short Films to Teach Reading Skills Christmas.” The product contains printable organizers with guiding questions to help students evaluate the short film and learn valuable reading skills. All short films will be added to a webpage on Book Units Teacher for easy access. The link to this webpage will be included in the purchased product.Continue Reading
Thirteen year-old Capricorn “Cap” Anderson lives at Garland, a farm that had once been commune in the 1960’s, with his grandmother Rain. Rain falls and breaks her hip. With no phone to call 9-1-1, Cap drives Rain into the city an hour away. Police arrest Cap for driving without a license and quickly ‘unarrest’ him when they realize how naive Cap is. He doesn’t know he is supposed to have a license in order to drive.
Rain’s broken hip prevents her from returning to Garland for a couple of months. This means Cap must live with the social worker and go to public school for the first time in his life. The students at Claverage (nicknamed C Average by the students) Middle School immediately see Cap as a loser because of his tie-dyed clothing, beads, and long hair. Since it is the custom to pick the lowest person on the social ladder as class president in eighth grade, Cap is elected to the position.Continue Reading
Lauren Tarshis’s seventeenth book in her popular I Survived Series – I Survived the Attack of the Grizzlies – tackles the grizzly attacks that took place in Glacier National Park. Readers are on the edge of their seats waiting to see what will happen next.Continue Reading
Weeks go by. Mount St. Helens sends up puffs of steam. The police block the road leading up to the mountain. After about two months, Mount St. Helens has calmed down. The road block is removed. Mr. Rowan wants to go back to his fishing cabin to get his fishing pole that he left behind. Jess is excited that she now has a way to get her father’s camera before her mom finds out that she took it.
When Jess and the boys reach the shack, they find the camera intact. Jess packs the camera safely in her backpack. As they leave the shack, Jess smells sulfur. Because of Dr. Morales’s information, she knows Mount St. Helens is about to erupt. In just seconds, they hear a loud Kaboom!Continue Reading
Aisha Saeed in her book Amal Unbound tells the fascinating story of a twelve year old girl who becomes a servant for the evil Jawad Sahid, the son of the Khan family.
After Amal’s mother had a fifth girl, she became depressed and wouldn’t get out of bed. Amal had to leave school to take care of the house and her younger sisters. One day when she needed a few minutes to herself, Amal went to the market. She was feeling glum about leaving school, so she bought a pomegranate as a special treat just for herself. When leaving the market, a car hit Amal. A man got out of the car and started yelling at her. He then wanted to take her pomegranate as a treat for his mother. Amal refused to give it to him and ran home.Continue Reading
Eleven-year old Hugo holds his little sister Gertie in his arms as they wait to board the Hindenburg. Hugo and his family have lived in Kenya for the past year while his parents who are science professors study the lions in the Thika Valley. Unfortunately, Gertie was bitten by a mosquito and got malaria. Hugo’s family must quickly get back to the states for Gertie to receive treatment. Riding the Hindenburg is the quickest way to travel in 1937.Continue Reading