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
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
Mibs Beaumont is almost ready to turn thirteen and waiting to finally find out what her special talent is going to be. In Mibs’ family, turning 13 is more than just growing into your natural talents, like playing the violin or scoring soccer goals or being good at listening to other people’s troubles. In Mibs’ family turning thirteen means growing into your savvy. Mibs’ Great-aunt Jules could step back twenty minutes in time every time she sneezed. Her cousin Olive can melt ice with a single red-hot stare. Mibs’ can’t wait to figure out what she’ll get..but she’s kind of scared too. Because these talents, however magical, are also dangerous. Her savvy could be something cool, like x-ray vision. It could be something dangerous, like fire, or worse, something boring!
When Mibs’ Dad is in a terrible accident all she really wants is the savvy power of healing. She’s so sure that this is her destiny, she manages to highjack a bus in an attempt to get to the hospital and prove her talents before it’s too late. As if she isn’t in trouble enough, her brothers and the preacher’s kids are all stowaways! On the bus, Mibs’ savvy starts to show, and it isn’t at all what she had in mind! If Mibs’ can finally get the bus to the hospital, will her savvy make any difference at all? Author: Ingrid Law
This one is optioned for a movie by the same people who made the Narnia movies, Holes, The Bridge to Terabithia and Because of Winn-Dixie. If I could, I’d buy my ticket today.
Piper Reed is a great character to read about on Veteran’s Day – today – the day our country honors the men and women who serve or have served in the military.
Piper Reed is proud of her Navy Dad and her Navy family. Piper calls her father Chief and loves to salute. She has never minded the moves the family must make because of the military but then again she has never had to move in the middle of the school year before. In Piper Reed Navy Brat, Piper’s father announces they are moving from a very comfortable home in San Diego to military housing in Pensacola, Florida. Piper feels her life has come undone. But change can bring surprises as Piper finds out. Piper is an adventurous fourth grader never lacking in excitement. -Recommended by Laura Dixon, Outreach Service Section
In Piper Reed The Great Gypsy, Piper’s Dad ships out for six months leaving Piper, her Mom and her sisters to face many months — even Christmas — all alone. Dad’s girls make the best of it and try as hard as they can to keep their Dad in the loop of family news and activities. Two good stories about a proud girl doing her part to keep the home fires burning for her Navy Dad. Author Kimberly Willis Holt Illustrator: Christine Davenier
House Jackson, team captain and star pitcher of the Aurora County All-Stars, loves baseball. He’s had a bum year nursing a broken elbow – an elbow broken by his least favorite girl in the world, Frances Shotz. While sitting out the last season, House’s father ropes home into reading classic books outloud to a bed bound old guy the other kids call “mean man Boyd”. The thing is, House likes Mr. Norwood Rhinehart Beauregard Boyd. Embarrassed about how he’s spent his time, House manages to keep his reading aloud secret, until Mr. Boyd dies and leaves House a note that sets in motion the revelation of several town secrets. The secrets unravel as Frances and House battle over which event will occur on July fourth, the town’s bicentennial pageant or the annual fourth of July baseball game. Author: Deborah Wiles