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Need help with book recs for 4th grader - US history


texasmama
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My 4th grade son is doing SL Core 4 this year - the second half of US history. (This time period covers basically the Civil War to the present). He is speeding through all of the "readers" at such a pace that he will be done with them months before our school year ends. I am thrilled that he is enjoying the books, but I need some supplementary book recommendations for this age/reading level which are set in this time period - historical fiction, biographies, etc. We are Christian so Christian content is fine but not necessary. He is actually reading at a 7th grade level, I would estimate. I am having him do written narrations of the stories as he finishes, but that will only stretch the books out so much. Thanks in advance!

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Here's my fourth grade list for that time period. :)

 

Mill by David Macaulay (1800s)

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (illust. by Robert Ingpen) (1843)

Train to Somewhere by Eve Bunting (1850)

John Muir: America's Naturalist by Thomas Locker (1850)

Walking with Henry: Life and Works of Thoreau by Thomas Locker (1854)

Tree of Life: illustrated book of Charles Darwin by Peter Sis (1859)

A Nation Torn: How the Civil War Began by Delia Ray (1861)

Duel of the Ironclads: Monitor vs. the Virginia by Patrick O'Brien (1861)

Two Miserable Presidents by Steve Sheinkin (1861)

Traveller by Richard Adams (1861)

Iron Scouts of the Confederacy by Lee McGiffin (1861)

What Makes a Monet a Monet? by Richard Muhlberger (1867)

Twenty-Three Tales by Tolstoy (1869)

The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald (1872)

What Makes a Degas a Degas? by Richard Muhlberger (1873)

Mark Twain: 21 Activities for Kids (1884)

What Makes a Van Gogh a Van Gogh? by Richard Muhlberger (1887)

Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan (1890s)

Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie (1904)

Call of the Wild by Jack London (1904)

Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos by R.L. LaFevers (1906)

Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling audiobook (1907)

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery (1908)

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame, illust. by Robert Ingpen (1908)

Marie Curie's Search for Radium by Beverly Birch (1909)

Theodore Roosevelt: 21 Activities for Kids (1909)

The Secret Garden audiobook narrated by Helena Bonham Carter (1910)

Truce by Jim Murphy (1914)

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo (1914)

The Snow Goose by Paul Gallico (1940)

The Black Stallion by Walter Farley (1941)

Sparrow Girl by Sara Pennypacker (1958)

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Haha, you're very welcome! There are a few books on my list that are a little on the long side that we do as read-alouds, but since your kiddo is such an advanced reader he may not have trouble with them. Maybe someone else will chime in and add their favorites to the thread, as well. :)

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I'm putting a star by the ones I've read:

 

Two Miserable Presidents*

Which Way to the Wild West*

Little House series* (not since I was a kid, except for #1)

Tucket series (kids have started)

Angel on the Square (RA, starting tomorrow)

Hero over here (kids are reading)

The Barn

The Secret Garden*

 

Multicultural Lit--esp for immigrant stories such as:

The House of Tailors

Young Fu of the Yangtze River (actually, I don't think this one is an immigrant story)

Tangled Thread

 

Look at SL year 5 for more ideas in this category.

 

HTH!

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We're doing SL 4 too. My kids are in 5th and 3rd grades and they often finish the readers early. I know this isn't what you asked, but I'll throw it out there in case. When my kids finish the SL books, rather than adding more historical fiction about the period, I give them books of different genres to read. I feel they get plenty of historical fiction with SL. They have both recently read a number of Roald Dahl's books and it was a fresh change of pace for them.

 

My daughter just loved Matilda and my son was completely engrossed in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and then Charlie and the Glass Elevator. When I asked my daughter how much more she had left of Matilda, she said it's so good, she's just taking her time and enjoying it.

 

Lisa

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We're doing SL 4 too. My kids are in 5th and 3rd grades and they often finish the readers early. I know this isn't what you asked, but I'll throw it out there in case. When my kids finish the SL books, rather than adding more historical fiction about the period, I give them books of different genres to read. I feel they get plenty of historical fiction with SL.

 

You make a good point. My son does seem to enjoy the historical fiction (most of it, anyway), but I am certainly open to other options.:001_smile:

 

I am excited to see that he enjoys reading so much. Also, he seems to have an attitude of "I will speed through the reading and finish the year's requirements early". Smart kid.:tongue_smilie: I have told him that reading is part of our day and that he is welcome to read the assigned books as quickly as he likes, but others will take their place in the schedule. He accepted this when I explained to him that the assigned readings are for someone reading at a fourth grade level, and he is above that level.

 

I appreciate the suggestions from everyone. We already have some of the titles mentioned. I also like to do a light summer schedule, so I can put some independent reading and some readalouds on that schedule.

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Here are the books VP uses for that history period. http://www.veritaspress.com/products.asp?dept=1059&pagenumber=2&sort_on=&sort_by= (Use the little page numbers to go through the rest.) There will be books in that list for grades 2-6, even though it says 6th grade.

 

Their fourth grade literature suggestions that aren't attached to history are here. http://www.veritaspress.com/products.asp?dept=1041 My Joy read most of them last year and heartily recommends them.

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