My Booklist

  • The book list provided below is a good resource for you when doing research for homework assignments or specific class topics. The books are organized by groups for easy reference. Simply click on the book title link to view additional information.


  • Cactus Hotel

    by Brenda Z. Guberson Year Published:
    Describes the life cycle of the giant saguaro cactus, with an emphasis on its role as a home for other desert dweller.
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  • Charlotte's Web

    by E.B. White Year Published:
    Wilbur, the pig is desolate when he discovers that he is destined to be the farmer's Christmas dinner until his spider friend, Charlotte, decided to help him.
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  • Dear Mr. Henshaw

    by Beverly Cleary Year Published:
    In his letters to his favorite author, ten-year-old Leigh reveals his problems in coping with his parents' divorce, being the new boy in school, and generally finding his own place in the world.
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  • Dear Mr. Henshaw

    by Beverly Cleary Year Published:
    In his letters to his favorite author, ten-year-old Leigh reveals his problems in coping with his parents' divorce, being the new boy in school, and generally finding his own place in the world.
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  • Freckle Juice

    by Judy Blume Year Published:
    Andrew wants freckles so badly that he buys Sharon's freckle recipe for fifty cents.
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  • Holes

    by Louis Sachar Year Published:
    A zany, mysterious, funny book about Stanley Yelnats and how he changes his family's bad luck.
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  • Muggie Maggie

    by Beverly Cleary Year Published:
    Maggie resists learning cursive writing in the third grade, until she discovers knowing how to read and write cursive promises to open an entirely new world of knowledge for her.
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  • The Black Stallion

    by Walter Farley Year Published:
    A shipwreck leaves young Alec stranded on a deserted island with a wild stallion.
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  • The Giving Tree

    by Shel Silverstein Year Published:
    A young boy grows into manhood and old age experiencing the love and generosity of a tree which gives to him without thought of return.
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  • The Lorax

    by Dr. Suess Year Published:
    The Once-ler describes the result of the local pollution problem.
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  • Tuck Everlasting

    by Natalie Babbitt Year Published:
    10-year-old Winnie Foster discovers the magic spring that has given the Tuck family eternal life. Will she drink the water too?
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  • A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by David Adler Year Published: Challenging
    The highlights of King's life are presented with an emphasis on his childhood and family. Children will immediately relate to his painful early experiences of racism and understand the genesis of his lifelong struggle for racial equality. Beautifully written and illustrated this book is a must read!
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  • Duck For President

    by Doreen Cronin Year Published: Average
    Duck is tired of doing his chores (mowing the lawn and grinding the coffee beans), and decides to hold an election to replace Farmer Brown. When he wins, Duck quickly realizes that running a farm requires too much hard work, and sets out to run for governor. With the help of the hens, and speeches "that only other ducks can understand," he eventually ends up running the country. Executive office gives him a headache, however, so Duck returns to the farm to work on his autobiography.

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  • First Day Jitters

    by Julie Danneberg Year Published: Average
    Sarah is hiding under her covers as Mr. Hartwell asks, "You don't want to miss the first day at your new school do you?" From under the blanket she replies, "I'm not going." When he reminds her how much she liked her other school and asks her to think of all the new friends she'll meet, she imagines a classroom where a paper airplane is flying, a boy is pulling his neighbor's pigtail, and another is blowing a gigantic bubble. Mr. Hartwell finally gets Sarah to stumble out of bed, eat a bit of toast, and get into the car where she slumps down into her seat. At school, the principal cheerfully welcomes her and takes her to the classroom where she is introduced as "Mrs. Sarah Jane Hartwell," the new teacher.
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  • Fluffy Meets the Groundhog

    by Kate Mcmullan Year Published: Average
    When Fluffy stumbles upon a strange den, he finds himself face to face with one very shy groundhog. With people and cameras waiting above the hole for a weather prediction, Fluffy thinks of a great idea to save Groundhog Day--and get some attention, too!
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  • Go to Sleep Groundhog

    by Judy Cox Year Published: Average
    Groundhog goes to sleep on Columbus Day and sets his alarm clock for February 2. He keeps tossing and turning. He checks the clock and gets up at half-past October, half-past November, and then half-past December. Each time, he sees the holidays that he had always slept through before. Halloween Witch, Turkey, and Santa each take a turn tucking him back into bed, reading him a seasonal story, and giving him a holiday treat. Naturally, when February 2 rolls around, Groundhog is finally sound asleep, but he wakes up long enough to go up to the surface and see his shadow.
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  • Guess How Much I Love You

    by Sam McBratney Year Published: Easy Reading
    All children want reassurance that their parents' love runs wide and deep. In Guess How Much I Love You, a young rabbit named Little Nutbrown Hare thinks he's found a way to measure the boundaries of love. In a heartwarming twist on the "I-can-do-anything-you-can-do-better" theme, Little Nutbrown Hare goes through a series of declarations regarding the breadth of his love for Big Nutbrown Hare. But even when his feelings stretch as long as his arms, or as high as his hops, Little Nutbrown Hare is fondly one-upped by the elder rabbit's more expansive love.
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  • How I spent My Summer Vacation

    by Marc Teague Year Published: Average
    Her spectacles perched on her nose and her hair coiffed in a Father Knows Best pompadour, Wallace Bleff's teacher looks on as the boy delivers an oral report on that classic topic, How I Spent My Summer Vacation. The classroom setting gives way to an expanse of Western plains, across which a locomotive train rumbles, bringing Wallace to visit his aunt. His parents have sent him there for a reason: "'Your imagination,' they said, 'is getting too wild./ It will do you some good to relax for a while.'" It won't take kids long to realize that Wallace's imagination is as fertile as ever, as he tells of being captured by cowboys, who outfit him in spiffy Western garb and teach him all their "cowboy tricks." When "Kid Bleff" finally calls his aunt (from a phone booth comically plunked down in the middle of nowhere), she invites him to bring his pals to her house for a barbecue.
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  • If You Take a Mouse to School

    by Laura Numeroff Year Published: Easy Reading
    Ah, mice. Give them an inch and they'll take a mile.

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  • It's Groundhog's Day

    by Steven Kroll Year Published: Average
    Worried that an early spring will ruin his ski lodge business, Roland Raccoon takes drastic steps to prevent Godfrey Groundhog from looking for his shadow on Groundhog Day.
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  • One Hundred Days Plus One

    by Margaret McNamara Year Published: Average
    Hannah bounces around with excitement. As part of the festivities, students are invited to bring a similar number of "little things" to share with the class. Over the course of the week, the girl carefully collects and counts out 100 buttons, some white, some mixed, some shaped like cats, and even a few shaped like diamonds. Unfortunately, on the day of the event she comes down with a cold, sneezing her neat pile of buttons into a big mess. Disappointed to have missed the party, Hannah returns to school on Monday, resolutely taking her button collection with her. Happily, the children are marking "one hundred plus one" that day, and the large orange button on her sweater makes her collection complete.
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  • Somebody Loves You Mr. Hatch

    by Eileen Spinelli Year Published: Average
    This warmhearted tale examines the effect that love and tender regard can have on a lackluster existence. Mr. Hatch is a drab, predictable gentleman who leads a painfully ordered and uninteresting life, his dreary routine at the shoelace factory barely broken by the same joyless lunch day after day. One Valentine's Day a giant candy-filled heart is delivered to Mr. Hatch with a note that reads, "Somebody loves you." Just the thought of someone taking an interest in him completely changes the way Mr. Hatch interacts with his neighbors and co-workers. The newly adorable gentleman becomes so much a part of people's lives that when it is disclosed that the heart was delivered by mistake, his friends and neighbors rally around him in a loving demonstration.
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  • The Best Thing About Valentines

    by Eleanor Hudson Year Published: Average
    Valentines, valentines, big ones and small--I love making valentines. I love it all!Ribbons, glitter, lace, and paste are all fun things to use when creating special Valentine's Day cards. Young children will enjoy reading this sweet rhyming story, narrated by a young child who loves to make cards and give them to family, friends, and classmates. But the very best thing of all is getting your very own valentines on Valentine's Day!
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  • The Night Before First Grade

    by Natasha Wing Year Published: Average
    It’s the night before the Big Day—first grade. Penny is excited to start the year with her best friend right beside her in the same classroom. This humorous take on Clement C. Moore’s classic tale has a perfect twist ending that will surprise readers—as well as the "heroine" of the story—and help all about-to-be first-graders through their own backto- school jitters.
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  • Chicken Soup with Rice

    by Maurice Sendak Year Published: Average
    Rhyme your way through the year with this exciting book of monthly poetry.
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  • Where the Sidewalk Ends

    by Shel Silverstein Year Published: Challenging
    Silverstein reveals his genius for reaching kids with silly words and simple pen-and-ink drawings. What child can resist a poem called "Dancing Pants" or "The Dirtiest Man in the World"? Each of the 130 poems is funny in a different way, or touching ... or both.

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Favorite Authors

  • Strega Nona

    by Tomie dePaola Year Published: Challenging
    Strega Nona lives by her lonesome in a small cottage in Calabria, Italy. A witch by trade, she cures the townspeople of their ailments, warts, and headaches. When Big Anthony is hired on as Strega Nona's servant she gives him very strict instructions on what he is required to do, and what he is forbidden to do. That is when the fun begins!

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  • Strega Nona's Magic Lessons

    by Tomie dePaola Year Published: Average
    In Strega Nona's Magic Lessons we once again join Strega Nona as she teaches Bambalona and a surprising new student Antonia (Big Anthony in disguise) to be Strega too. Bambalona learns well while Antonia struggles and gets it all wrong (humorous and expected, given Big Anthony's past with Strega Nona). When the day comes that Strega Nona gives Bambalona her spell book to study and tells Antonia that she's not ready yet, well, Big Anthony can't accept that and sneaks out in the middle of the night to get the book....and that's when he does it again, he messes with Strega Nona's magic and turns her into a frog. Both he and Bambalona are horrified and worried that they'll never get her back. As usual its love, honesty, integrity and a little forgiveness that wins the day.

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November Books

Other Great Reads

  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Average
    The gates of Willy Wonka's famous chocolate factory are opening at last--and only five children will be allowed inside.

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  • George vs. George: The American Revolution as Seen From Both Sides

    by Rosalyn Schanzer Year Published:
    Explores how the characters and lives of King George III of England and George Washington affected the progress and outcome of the American Revolution.
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  • Hatchet

    by Gary Paulsen Year Published: Challenging
    A boy named Brian is on a trip to the Canadian oilfields to spend the summer with his dad. The pilot of the Cessna he is traveling in suffers a heart attack and dies. Brian must land the plane in the forest. Brian learns to exist in in this wilderness. He faces many dangers including hunger, animal attacks, and even a tornado. This book gives the reader a better understanding of what it is like to survive in an untamed land.

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  • Hoot

    by Carl Hiaasen Year Published: Average
    Roy Eberhardt is the new kid--again. This time around it's Trace Middle School in humid Coconut Grove, Florida. But it's still the same old routine: table by himself at lunch, no real friends, and thick-headed bullies like Dana Matherson pushing him around. But if it wasn't for Dana Matherson mashing his face against the school bus window that one day, he might never have seen the tow-headed running boy. And if he had never seen the running boy, he might never have met tall, tough, bully-beating Beatrice. And if he had never met Beatrice, he might never have discovered the burrowing owls living in the lot on the corner of East Oriole Avenue. And if he had never discovered the owls, he probably would have missed out on the adventure of a lifetime.

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  • The Library Card

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Average
    These four short stories follow children with a problem. One is a shoplifter and vandal; one is not allowed to watch her beloved TV; one is homeless and living in a car; and one is in a hijacked bookmobile. A blank, blue library card mysteriously appears somewhere in each story, and it manages to make things better every time.

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December Books

Other Teachers' Favorites

  • Esperanza Rising

    by Pam Munoz Ryan Year Published: Challenging
    Esperanza thought she'd always live with her family on their ranch in Mexico--she'd always have fancy dresses, a beautiful home, & servants. But a sudden tragedy forces Esperanza and Mama to flee to California during the Great Depression, and to settle in a camp for Mexican farm workers. Esperanza isn't ready for the hard labor, financial struggles, or lack of acceptance she now faces. When their new life is threatened, Esperanza must find a way to rise above her difficult circumstances--Mama's life and her own depend on it.
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  • Maniac Magee

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Average
    After his parents die, Jeffrey Lionel Magee's life becomes legendary, as he accomplishes athletic and other feats which awe his contemporaries.

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  • The Sign of the Beaver

    by Elizabeth George Speare Year Published: Average
    Left alone to guard the family's wilderness home in eighteenth-century Maine, a boy is hard-pressed to survive until local Indians teach him their skills.
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  • The Whipping Boy

    by Sid Fleischman Year Published: Average
    Jemmy, once a poor boy living on the streets, now lives in a castle. As the whipping boy, he bears the punishment when Prince Brat misbehaves, for it is forbidden to spank, thrash, or whack the heir to the throne. The two boys have nothing in common and even less reason to like one another. But when they find themselves taken hostage after running away, they are left with no choice but to trust each other.
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Shared Reading

  • An Egg Is an Egg

    by Nicki Weiss Year Published: Average
    A gentle and comforting story about a small boy and his mother as they discuss the changes in the simple things around them. An egg becomes a chick; a seed becomes a flower; day becomes night. But the important thing--the love they share--never changes.
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  • Coco Can't Wait

    by Taro Gomi Year Published: Easy Reading
    Coco and her grandmother set out from their houses to visit but keep missing each other along the way.
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  • I Went Walking

    by Sue Williams and Julie Vivas Year Published: Easy Reading
    With its patterned response to the title, "What did you see?," and the accompanying lead-in picture showing part of a farmyard animal, this book immediately draws children into the story. The lively, unspoken storyline of a shock-headed toddler playing silly games with the animals he meets and gradually shedding his shoes, socks, and jacket fills out the spare text for beginning readers.
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  • Jaspers Beanstalk

    by Mick Inkpen Year Published: Easy Reading
    Jasper the cat, finds a bean, plants it, and waits for something to happen. He painstakingly cares for it by watering and hoeing throughout the course of a week, but to no avail; it just won't grow. In frustration, he digs it up and throws it away, claiming "that bean will never make a beanstalk." But a long time later, it not only begins to grow, but also takes on fairy-tale proportions.
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January Books

Read Aloud

  • A Fine, Fine School

    by Sharon Creech Year Published: Average
    September 2008 Book of the Month On weekends, redheaded Tillie climbs trees and teaches her little brother how to skip. During the week, of course, she goes to school. Her principal, Mr. Keene, is the kind of gung ho leader any school would be lucky to have. That is, until he goes a little over the top. "Oh!" he says. "Aren't these fine children? Aren't these fine teachers? Isn't this a fine, fine school?" And then this exuberant administrator decides five days isn't nearly enough for such a fine school. "From now on, let's have school on Saturdays, too!" The teachers and students are not thrilled, but no one is willing to burst Mr. Keene's bubble. Soon their well-meaning principal has done away with weekends, holidays, and summer vacation. It's time for someone to take action... gently, though. Young Tillie has just the right amount of subtlety and tact--and motivation--for the job.
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  • A Giraffe and a Half

    by Shel Silverstein Year Published: Challenging
    If you had a giraffe and he stretched another half … you would have a giraffe and a half. And if you glued a rose to the tip of his nose … And … if he put on a shoe and then stepped in some glue … And if he used a chair to comb his hair … And so it goes until … but that would be telling. Children will be kept in stitches until the very end, when the situation is resolved in the most riotous way possible. Shel Silverstein’s incomparable line drawings add to the hilarity of his wildly funny rhymes.
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  • All the Places to Love

    by Patricia Maclachlan Year Published: Average
    old in the voice of a child who lives on a farm with his parents and grandparents, the author's poetic narrative opens on the day of the boy's birth, when his grandmother holds him up to the open window, "So that what I heard first was the wind. / What I saw first were all the places to love: / The valley, / The river falling down over rocks, / The hilltop where the blueberries grew." The child introduces readers to the spots that each person in his family loves best: for his mother it is the hilltop where the sky is "an arm's length away"; for his grandfather, the dark, cool barn ("Where else, he says, can the soft sound of cows chewing / Make all the difference in the world?"). Only after the birth of his sister does the boy reveal his favorite place of all: the marsh "Where ducklings follow their mother / Like tiny tumbles of leaves."
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  • Catalina Magdalena Hoopensteiner Wallendiner Hogan Logan Bogan Was Her Name

    by Tedd Arnold Year Published: Challenging
    Arnold once again embraces the absurd with this illustrated rendition of a traditional camp song. The title character is undeniably a peculiar protagonist: she's got only two hairs on her head, arms like an ape, big feet, and she's cross-eyed.Catalina enjoys her life and looks deliriously happy in all of the illustrations. Music is appended along with some interesting variations on her name. Arnold's trademark artwork reflects the wacky humor of this song, and will attract a young audience.
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  • Curious George at the Fire Station

    by Margaret Ray Year Published: Average
    This time George is in serious trouble. When he rings the bell on the fire engine, the firemen think there's a real fire. It seems that a fire station is no place for a curious monkey -- unless that monkey is George, who can do what none of the firemen can to make a quick rescue.
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  • Daisy Head Mayzie

    by Dr. Seuss Year Published: Challenging
    When a daisy suddenly sprouts from the top of Mayzie McGrew's head, she is faced with her classmates' taunts, her parents' dismay, and a publicity agent's greed. How poor Mayzie learns that love is more important than fame and fortune makes an endearing morality tale for our time--and for all ages. Narrated by the Cat in the Hat, Daisy-Head Mayzie is vintage Seuss!

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  • Green Eggs and Ham

    by Dr. Seuss Year Published: Challenging
    Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss! Sam-I-am is as persistent as a telemarketer, changing as many variables as possible in the hopes of convincing the nameless skeptic that green eggs and ham are a delicacy to be savored. He tries every manner of presentation with this "nouveau cuisine"--in a house, with a mouse, in a box, with a fox, with a goat, on a boat--to no avail. Then finally, finally the doubter caves under the tremendous pressure exerted by the tireless Sam-I-am. And guess what?

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  • Harry the Dirty Dog

    by Gene Zion Year Published: Average
    "Harry was a white dog with black spots who liked everything, except getting a bath." Taking matters into his own paws, he buries his family's scrubbing brush in the backyard and runs away from home before they can wrangle him into the tub. Harry gets dirty playing in the street, dirtier at the railroad, and dirtier still playing tag with the other dogs. When sliding down the coal chute, he actually changes from a white dog with black spots to a black dog with white spots! Of course, by the time he gets home he is completely unrecognizable to his family--even when he does all his clever flip-flopping tricks. In a stroke of doggy genius, he unearths the bath brush, begs for a bath, and the rest is history.
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  • Horton Hatches the Egg

    by Dr. Seuss Year Published: Challenging
    Poor Horton. Dr. Seuss's kindly elephant is persuaded to sit on an egg while its mother, the good-for-nothing bird lazy Maysie, takes a break. Little does Horton know that Maysie is setting off for a permanent vacation in Palm Springs. He waits, and waits, never leaving his precarious branch, even through a freezing winter and a spring that's punctuated by the insults of his friends. ("They taunted. They teased him. They yelled 'How Absurd! Old Horton the Elephant thinks he's a bird!'") Further indignities await, but Horton has the patience of Job--from whose story this one clearly derives--and he is rewarded in the end by the surprise birth of... an elephant-bird.

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  • Love You Forever

    by Robert Munsch Year Published: Easy Reading
    The mother sings to her sleeping baby: "I'll love you forever / I'll love you for always / As long as I'm living / My baby you'll be." She still sings the same song when her baby has turned into a fractious 2-year-old, a slovenly 9-year-old, and then a raucous teen. So far so ordinary--but this is one persistent lady. When her son grows up and leaves home, she takes to driving across town with a ladder on the car roof, climbing through her grown son's window, and rocking the sleeping man in the same way. Then, inevitably, the day comes when she's too old and sick to hold him, and the roles are at last reversed.

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  • Odd Velvet

    by Mary Whitcomb Year Published: Challenging
    This inaugural picture book for both author and artist features an oddball girl whose differences teach her classmates to appreciate their own unique qualities. On the first day of school, while the other children bring the teacher cinnamon tea and potpourri, Velvet offers "an egg carton filled with seven rocks, her favorite red shoelaces, and a half a sparrow's egg." Velvet sports long red braids, enormous round glasses and candy-striped stockings, and when the children notice that she is not wearing a new dress, they point and laugh: "Where did she come from?" But the taunting never gets out of hand, thanks to the author's restraint and pictures that exaggerate the features of all the schoolchildren. This one's for anyone who feels different or who knows someone who's different; everyone will recognize Velvet.
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  • Officer Buckle and Gloria

    by Peggy Rathman Year Published: Average
    Officer Buckle is a roly-poly bloke, dedicated to teaching schoolchildren important safety tips, such as never put anything in your ear and never stand on a swivel chair. The problem is, Officer Buckle's school assemblies are dull, dull, dull, and the children of Napville just sleep, sleep, sleep. That is, until Gloria the police dog is invited along! Stealthily pantomiming each safety tip behind Officer Buckle's back, Gloria wins the children's hearts. Meanwhile Officer Buckle assumes the cheers and laughter are all for him.
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  • Read Anything Good Lately

    by Susan Allen Year Published: Average
    From "an atlas at the airport" to "a yoga book in the yard" and "the zodiac at the zoo," a little girl moves playfully along through biography, comics, dictionary, encyclopedia, magazine, poetry, quotations, recipes, and a variety of genres. Reading the "gossip in the grocery line," "updates under an umbrella," and "whatever in the waiting room" are somewhat looser variations on the theme but still acceptable.
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  • Reading Makes You Feel Good

    by Todd Parr Year Published: Easy Reading
    Parr highlights some of the advantages of reading, such as learning how to make a pizza or finding your favorite animal at the zoo. The cartoon illustrations are bold and cheerful. Once again, the artist embraces a wild palette with pink rabbits, a purple elephant, and green- yellow-,and blue-faced people.
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  • The Berenstain Bears Forget Their Manners

    by Stan Berenstain Year Published: Challenging
    When Mama Bear's efforts to improve her family's manners are unsuccessful, she devises a Politeness Plan--a chart listing a chore as a penalty for each act of rudeness.

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  • The Seasons of Arnold's Apple Tree

    by Gail Gibbons Year Published: Average
    The Seasons of Arnolds Apple Tree is an excellent book with illustrations that capture the changes in an apple tree throughout the seasons.
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  • Why Do Leaves Change Color?

    by Betsy Maestro Year Published: Challenging
    In the Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science Stage 2 series, this is an informative concept book that explains what happens to leaves in autumn as they change colors and then separate from the tree.
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  • Wild About Books

    by Judy Sierra Year Published: Average
    In this rollicking story, librarian Molly McGrew accidentally drives her bookmobile into the zoo, and then the fun begins! The animals draw close to listen to a Dr. Seuss story, and soon they begin stampeding "to learn all about this new something called reading."
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February Books

March Books

April Books

May Books

June Books

2nd Grade Chapter Books

  • Mercy Watson series

    by Kate DiCamillo Year Published: Challenging
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  • Poppleton Series

    by Cynthia Rylant Year Published: Average
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