Friday, February 03, 2006

Books I recommend # 3

The Magical Adventures of Pretty Pearl by Virginia Hamilton

This book is a little bit difficult to get into at first but it is a good read. It combines African myth and folktale with an adventurous story of exploration. The main character travels from Africa to America. It talks about slavery and human condition but in a way that includes a lot of magical realism. I would suggest it for Grade 6/7 readers or an independent reading shelf in an intermediate classroom. My mom got it for me as an intermediate reader and I enjoyed it.

Books I Reccomend #2

Cathy talked about these books in class. The Macdonald Hall series by Gordon Korman are a set of my favorite books. However I thought I would let you know you should check your Scholastic Canada book orders while on practicum because these books are being re-released! They have an updated cover but the story should be just the same (and just as good). These books are great intermediate reads (Grades 6/7). Gordon Korman uses a lot of humor and the children in his books are portrayed as intelligent, crafty, and fun.

I would suggest they could be a good read aloud or good on your independent reading shelf. It is also neat to know that Gordon Korman wrote the first book in this series when he was a kid, only 12 years old. That should be inspirational to young authors in your own classroom.

Books I Recommend #1

Ramona Quimby, Age 8

I loved the Ramona books by Beverly Cleary. She is a wonderful author with engaging stories about realistic thoughts and questions of a young girl at home and at school. Ramona is usually in conflict with her older sister Beezus and usually getting into and out of trouble. I would recommend these books for Grade 3 and 4 level readers. There used to be a television series on PBS that dramatized the Beverly Cleary Ramona books. Canadian actress Sarah Polley played Ramona. I remember watching this as an 8-9 year old myself back in the 1980's. There are lots of good connections to themes about friendship, sharing, and sibling rivalry (family).

I know the DRC has Beverly Cleary books available as novel studies. I also found this website that provides teacher resources for anyone interested in using them during their practicum