Librarians & Teachers Encourage Reading Newer Intermediate Level Books
Looking for newer intermediate level books for your students? Teachers can easily get stuck in a rut, relying on old favorites. In 2016 these two books were picked as part of a Reading Revolution competition for intermediate students grades 3-5. Even if you haven’t read them, you can trust the teachers and librarians who chose them. You and your students will enjoy these choices.
No Talking by Andrew Clements
What a brilliant idea behind the book, No Talking! Written in 2012, Andrew Clements took the most common command heard in schools throughout history and turned it into a student-directed contest. A no-talking contest between fifth-grade girls and fifth-grade boys would be stranger than fiction if it was not already fiction. But there it is, inspired by Mahatma Gandhi, or rather a report written about him started the unlikely contest. Neither teachers, principal or the students could have predicted the results. It became the perfect example of flipped classroom where the students ran with a grass-roots idea and were as surprised where it lead as the teachers were. It became the perfect example of flipped classroom where the students ran with a grass-roots idea and were as surprised where it lead as the teachers were.
At only 166 pages, No Talking was fun and tremendously easy to read.
The Amazon ratings within the children’s books for Kindle category for April 27, 2017, are #66 for parents, #226 for school and #532 for friendship.
How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell
Published in 2014 as part of a 12-book-series, I almost didn’t make it to page nine out of 224 short pages wading through the ridiculous character names that author, Cressida Cowell, invented. Third to fifth graders, especially boys would love them, so never mind what I thought. What boy wouldn’t appreciate friends like Duhbrain, Dogsbreath, Snotface, and their teacher, Gobber the Belch?
Instead of dogs, cats or even lizards, the boys had to catch and train a dragon to successfully join the tribe of Vikings and take their place as warriors. The chief’s puny son, Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third, was the least likely to lead the boys successfully through their training. The rites of initiation had a major hiccup when the dragons they had domesticated and trained for several months before the final ceremony got into a fight. Even I sat on the edge of my seat to learn the outcome. Ok, maybe I exaggerate.
If you hate the book, don’t worry, the kids won’t. One redeeming feature of the book is a double page spread map, and they will study it intensely. Since Google has our backs, nobody understands real maps anymore. Don’t tell them it might improve social studies skills. Shhhhh no talking!
Related Children’s Book Posts
More Librarian & Teacher Recommended Intermediate Books
- Because of Mr. Terupt – two book series
Blue Willow written in 1976 about San Joaquin Valley
Elijah of Buxton Best Seller See above for review.
Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures The 2014 Newbery Medal winner, written by beloved storyteller Kate DiCamillo. She has many excellent children’s books. I’ve read at least three and recommend them highly.
Hurricane Katrina, 2005 This is one of many How I Survived series. They are all engaging.
Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai A touching story about fleeing from VietNam and immigrating to Alabama.
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