Mrs. Wurtz leaves a blank notebook in her class’s writer’s corner. The kids are supposed to write in it, and write whatever they want. The only rule is that each person who writes in the book must sign his or her name. It’s fun to read the entries and look at the pictures the kids draw. At first, you don’t know who is who, but as you read you can tell who the kids are by their style of writing and the kind of pictures they draw. The kids reveal their feelings and even fight with each other. Why do boys have to write about puke and boogers and stuff like that? That’s what the girls want to know! In the end, they work out their classroom problems with words. What a great idea! Writing about your feelings is a great way to work things out in your own head. Author: Mary Amato
Despereaux is a lovable big-eared underdog, um, mouse. When he’s born, he’s too small and his ears are too big and his eyes are weird. He’s so puny no one thinks he will even live. Even his own mother describes him as a disappointment. Now that’s sad. And as he grows, he’s just not good at being a mouse, but he’s got dreams, big ones. Go see the movie (opens Dec. 19), sure, but don’t miss the book, Despereaux might be tiny but he’s one mighty mouse. Author: Kate DiCamillo
I mean, she really does. Rule I mean. If I were ten again I would want to live in Amelia’s neighborhood. I’d want Amelia to be my friend. She isn’t perfect, but she’s authentic. That means she’s not fake. She doesn’t lie or talk behind your back. She says what she means…even if she might have to apologize later. She’s got your back and you’d cover hers too.
Amelia’s comic book world is probably a lot like yours. Parents get divorced, kids go to school, play sports, go to dances at school, have to move away, or have problems at home. Homework gets done…and doesn’t get done. Parents listen…and sometimes don’t listen. Through all this, Amelia has her friends, Rhonda, Reggie, Pajamaman, Joan, Sunday and Kyle to help her figure it all out. Life can be tough, but with good friends and family, Amelia (and you) can tough it out and even have a lot of fun. Author: Jimmy Gownley
Since Warner Bros. delayed the release of the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince movie until July, 2009, (rats!) we can at least look forward to this little piece of Harry Potter’s World. The Tales of Beedle the Bard, the book Dumbledore gave Hermonie in his will, is available today! Don’t wait – if you want to a read a copy from the library, place that hold right now! The book has six tales in it: “The Wizard and the Hopping Pot,” “The Fountain of Fair Fortune,” “The Warlock’s Hairy Heart,” “Babbitty Rabbitty and Her Cackling Stump,” and the one we all remember, “The Tale of the Three Brothers.” It even includes some notes by Dumbledore. (sniff.) Author: J.K. Rowling
FYI if you decide to buy it: From every sale of this book, Scholastic (the publisher) will give its net proceeds to the CHILDREN’S HIGH LEVEL GROUP, a charity cofounded in 2005 by J.K. Rowling and Baroness Nicholson. This group works to promote children’s rights and make their lives better. Very nice.