Miss Malarkey Leaves No Reader Behind, by Judy Finchler, is a book I could have written myself. It’s about a teacher who loves to read trying to inspire the same desire in her students. The exciting part begins when the school enters a contest to read 1,000 books. However, Miss Malarkey doesn’t just want the students to read for the contest, she wants them to actually appreciate the joy of reading. The problem begins when four boys refuse to cooperate. One by one, Miss Malarkey finds three of them books they love. They now find themselves reading books instead of playing video games. Finally, Miss Malarkey finds a book for the last one. He wants to be the one to read the 1,000th book.
Is There Really a Human Race?, by Jamie Lee Curtis, is a good book. (I’m running out of synonyms here!). I read it to my class to help them understand that, even though we look different, we’re all the same.
Take a Kiss to School, by Angela McAllister, will help those children who don’t want to go to school because they’re afraid their moms will miss them too much. So, the mom in the story comes up with a way to reassure her daughter that she’ll be okay while she’s at school. She fills her daughter’s pockets full of kisses so she can take them out and use them when she needs it. Somehow the mom manages to make it through the day without her daughter. It kinda’ reminds me of my separation anxiety from Phillise when she went to school. Cute! Very cute!
TIGHTROPE POPPY the High-Wire Pig, by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen, was a sweet little book about following your dreams. This book is a must read for anyone who dreams of a career path out of the ordinary. Poppy wants to be a tightrope artist. Even though this is not the typical thing that a pig does, she decides to leave home and follow her dreams. The circus owner welcomes her aboard and tells her to practice. She tells him that she doesn’t need practice. When her big day comes, she falls in front of everyone. She is so embarrassed that she wants to quit but she doesn’t. She takes the owner’s advice and practices. When she gets her chance again, she is the hit of the show. All of her practice and perseverance pays off. The message- You can do anything you want to do. Live your dream.
I Hate to Read by Rita Marshall, was a book I received straight from the publisher to review in advance. I liked it. In the book the title character, Victor, is a good kid, but he was a victim of the “I Hate to Read” syndrome. He hates to read. That is until he meets the crocodile in the white coat who introduces him to the many adventures he can experience in a book. Trust me, your students will love it. By the time you finish reading the book, some of your students may very well learn to love reading. Check it out!