Saturday, April 21, 2012

Book Recommendations Wanted

So, my seventh graders are reading me out of house and home.  Their Literature Circle groups keep coming back for more.  I'm not about to say, "No, put that back!  What are you going to read in your groups in eighth grade?"

My administrator told me I can order some more LC sets (six copies or so) of novels.  I'm looking for high-interest titles that kids can read and discuss basically on their own.  I usually have several groups of between two and six kids going at the same time, so while I'm snooping on them and having them write and trying to keep track of them, we aren't going over vocabulary and discussing these books as a whole group.  It's OK if the books are slightly below middle school reading level if they hold my students' interest.  We're reading more challenging things as a whole class. 

Highly successful LC books recently have been The Outsiders, Zach's Lies, Claws, Freak the Mighty, and Al Capone Does my Shirts.

So, what do you recommend?  What are some sure-fire winners that your kids have enjoyed?


Amy @ Experience Imagination said...

Here is a selection of books I really enjoyed in junior high (or that I've enjoyed since and are about a junior high reading level), in no particular order: Cheaper by the Dozen and Belles on Their Toes (both by Frank B. Gilbreth and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey), Eaters of the Dead and Congo (both by Michael Crichton), Clan of the Cave Bear (by Jean M. Auel), the Amelia Peabody series (by Elizabeth Peters)--I haven't gone through the whole series, but I've read the first one and two or three of the later ones--and, of course, I think I've already recommended to you the Christy Miller series (by Robin Jones Gunn).

It's interesting, I have always though that I didn't really read a broad range of books, but looking back over this list, I guess my range is not as narrow as I'd thought!

Linda at teacherdance said...

I wish I had a big list for you, but did not note all the books. I just did a big book talk for a class (5th-6th-gifted readers-but read all levels of books) & pulled about 30 books from their own class library shelves, then some really new ones from our library. Have you considered the new ones recently out? Here is that list: Any of the Penderwicks books, Icefall, Because of Mr. Terrupt, Liesl & Po, The Mostly True Story of Jack, Breaking Stalin's Nose, Crow, Bigger Than A Breadbox, The Mighty Miss Malone. If your budget doesn't cover hardbacks, here are some I think are worthy, & not so new: The Dark Is Rising series, The World As We Know It, Memory Boy, the Cynthia Voigt books about Dicey, Sounder, Hoot, recent Newbery award winners.

Good luck Ruth!