Jump to content

Menu

Will you evaluate this book list?


Recommended Posts

Dd is a rising 6th grader. I'm scheduling in 1 hour/day for literature. I'm not using any lit guides this year, but we will discuss each book when she finishes it (or as she reads for more difficult titles). Dd reads quickly, maybe 80-100 pages/hour. Some of the books I have listed will be slower than that, though. I'm aiming for 30 books, but I wouldn't mind letting her choose 10 of those from a list of 20 or so. My goals for this year's list is to challenge her with some books but also pick up some must-read type books that we've never done before we move on to other things. Some of these books I've never read, but I put them on the list because I've seen them recommended so many times. The two star books I already own. The three star books are going to be on my final list. If I've missed a favorite, I'm open to suggestions. If I have something listed that your kids hated, please let me know. I'm a conservative Christian if that makes a difference on any of the recommendations.

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Aiken

**The Phantom Tollbooth by Juster

Holes by Sacher

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by O'Brien

**A Wrinkle in Time by L'Engle

**Letters from Rifka

**Strawberry Hill

***Song of Hiawatha by Longfellow

Tanglewood Tales by Hawthorne

***A Christmas Carol by Dickens

Big Red by Jim Kjelgaard

Big Wave by Pearl S. Buck

**Black Stallion by Walter Farley

**Borrowers by Mary Norton

**Gentle Ben by Walt Morey

**The Moffats by Estes

**Gone Away Lake by Enright

Julie of the Wolves by George

**Number the Stars by Lowry

**Five Children and It by Nesbit

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor

**Tuck Everlasting

Girl of the Limberlost by Porter

**Last of the Mohicans by Cooper

**Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Stevenson

**Time Cat by Alexander

**The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle

***Around the World in Eighty Days by Verne

***The Call of the Wild by London

***White Fang by London

***Fahrenheit 451 by Bradbury

***The Jungle Book by Kipling

**Just So Stories by Kipling

***Kidnapped by Stevenson

***Little Women by Alcott

***The Hobbit by Tolkien (reread)

***The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by Tolkien

***The Yearling

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Julie of the Wolves is one of *my* all time favorite books, but it does deal with rape. IIRC, Julie is a child bride who escapes when her husband attempts to rape her. It is a very small part of the story (told as a flashback) and your dd might not even realize what the husband is trying to do. However, I will be waiting on this book until my dd is 12+.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looks like a great list to me. I love children's books and booklists. The thing I try to keep in mind is that there are so many books out there, that no way could a child read or hear them all. There are so many good books. I'm going to have a 5th grader next. I don't usually assign reading since he does a good job reading quality and challenging books on his own. I do however still read aloud to him and plan for some extra activities with some of our read alouds. Here's my tentative list for reading aloud for next year, in no particular order. It's subject to change as we find something that grabs our interest. We're spending the summer with Chronicles of Narnia at the moment. As you can see I'm branching away this year from reading fantasy style books typically loved by boys. He usually reads those on his own, so I'm trying to read books he wouldn't necessarily choose on his own. Modern, realistic, historical, or typically appealing to girls but still quality literature. I doubt we'll get through all of these.

 

Out of the Dust

Lily's Crossing

Ella Enchanted

The View from Saturday

A Girl Named Disaster

Walk Two Moons

The Giver

Missing May

Shiloh

Bud Not Buddy

By the Great Horn Spoon

Julie of the Wolves

Caddie Woodlawn

Call it Courage

A Long Way From Chicago

Because of Winn Dixie

Ben and Me

Archimedes and the Door of Science

The Little House series (Wilder)

Little Women

Sounder

The Secret Garden and A Little Princess

Sarah Plain and Tall

Sign of the Beaver

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Julie of the Wolves is one of *my* all time favorite books, but it does deal with rape. IIRC, Julie is a child bride who escapes when her husband attempts to rape her. It is a very small part of the story (told as a flashback) and your dd might not even realize what the husband is trying to do. However, I will be waiting on this book until my dd is 12+.

Thanks. I'll wait on it. I thought it was one I read as a kid, but either I was mistaken or it went right over my head.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looks like a great list to me. I love children's books and booklists. The thing I try to keep in mind is that there are so many books out there, that no way could a child read or hear them all. ​My list feels very random to me, and I think this is why. I do want to assign many books this year, because Dd will read and enjoy a variety of books but will usually choose mysteries or, occasionally, historical fiction. I have to talk her into lit books in her free time, but she is happy to read them for school.

Out of the Dust*

Lily's Crossing*

Ella Enchanted**

The View from Saturday

A Girl Named Disaster

Walk Two Moons*

The Giver*

Missing May*

Shiloh*

Bud Not Buddy*

By the Great Horn Spoon*

Julie of the Wolves

Caddie Woodlawn*

Call it Courage*

A Long Way From Chicago

Because of Winn Dixie*

Ben and Me**

Archimedes and the Door of Science**

The Little House series (Wilder)

Little Women

Sounder*

The Secret Garden** and A Little Princess

Sarah Plain and Tall*

Sign of the Beaver*

 

Thanks for sharing your list. I have the starred books, so I can easily add them to a pile for her to choose from. She's read the double stars. She'll read By the Great Horn Spoon and Caddie Woodlawn for history this year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lots of variety and great works for a 6th grader here! :)

 

Just a few thoughts, FWIW:

 

Some of these works would be great 6th grade gentle intro into literature discussion of looking for/talking about a few literary elements and themes: A Wrinkle in Time, Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry, Tuck Everlasting, Call of the Wild, The Hobbit, 20,000 Leagues... Maybe pick 4 of these works (1 per quarter) and go slower and more in depth and use it as an opportunity to begin transitioning from straight "just reading" into more "reading with depth and thinking"...

 

Some of these works are a bit advanced in vocabulary or sentence structure, so they will likely be a stretch for a 6th grader (Song of Hiawatha (due to it being a poem); A Christmas Carol; Last of the Mohicans; 20,000 Leagues; The Lord of the Rings trilogy). At the least, I would encourage slowing down, looking up vocabulary, and perhaps even a little beginning discussion on these works.

 

And a few of these works are "meaty" enough, I would definitely save them for when you start doing actual Literature discussion and analysis (Farenheit 451, The Lord of the Rings trilogy) -- unless you are thinking of re-visiting some of these works later when you are doing a more formal type of Literature in the future?

 

Have a great 6th grade literature journey! Warmest regards, Lori D.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lots of variety and great works for a 6th grader here! :)

 

Just a few thoughts, FWIW:

 

Some of these works would be great 6th grade gentle intro into literature discussion of looking for/talking about a few literary elements and themes: A Wrinkle in Time, Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry, Tuck Everlasting, Call of the Wild, The Hobbit, 20,000 Leagues... Maybe pick 4 of these works (1 per quarter) and go slower and more in depth and use it as an opportunity to begin transitioning from straight "just reading" into more "reading with depth and thinking"... I allow Dd to choose the majority of her books, but I feel like she is missing some good books that she will enjoy. A typical conversation between us might go something like:

 

Dd: "Mom, what can I read?"

Me: "I think you'd like Ella Enchanted."

Dd: "That looks boring (old, girly, etc.)."

Me: "I think you'd like it, but what about The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle? I really enjoyed it when I was about your age. (That last sentence guarantees the Dd will refuse it at first, although we have remarkably similar tastes in books and she likes most of my old favorites.)

Dd: "No, thanks. I'll just look". She'll find a mystery or series book - preferably one from a mystery series. :laugh:

 

If she is asking for her next literature book, I'll hand her something like Ella Enchanted (I eventually required it, and she loved it.) or Heidi. She'll take the book and read it. Usually she enjoys it. Most of the books you listed above are in the "I'd just like her to read it category." Although we will discuss (as described in Teaching the Classics) most of them to varying extents before she moves on.

 

Some of these works are a bit advanced in vocabulary or sentence structure, so they will likely be a stretch for a 6th grader (Song of Hiawatha (due to it being a poem); A Christmas Carol; Last of the Mohicans; 20,000 Leagues; The Lord of the Rings trilogy). At the least, I would encourage slowing down, looking up vocabulary, and perhaps even a little beginning discussion on these works. We will spend more time with these books and the rest of the three star books.

 

And a few of these works are "meaty" enough, I would definitely save them for when you start doing actual Literature discussion and analysis (Farenheit 451, The Lord of the Rings trilogy) -- unless you are thinking of re-visiting some of these works later when you are doing a more formal type of Literature in the future. This will be a first pass through for some of them including LotR.

 

Have a great 6th grade literature journey! Warmest regards, Lori D.

 

 

Lori, thank you for your thoughtful reply.

 

I hadn't thought of it this way before I read your post, but I have different expectations for different books. Some she will just read. Many we will discuss when she is finished with them. The ones in this category will likely take only a few days for her to read. Others we will spend more time on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have different expectations for different books. Some she will just read. Many we will discuss when she is finished with them. The ones in this category will likely take only a few days for her to read. Others we will spend more time on.

 

 

 

Gotcha. :) So a number of books on your list are what I think of as "book basket" books -- good reading material to have handy to choose from out of the book basket or off the bookshelf. :) Enjoy!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are 2 books on your list that are harder than the others IMHO: Last of the Mohicans and Kidnapped. Kidnapped has about 3 chapters in the middle that are extremely hard to get through because they are all about the politics of the times. So either read aloud those chapters, or have her skip them. Last of the Mohicans is very difficult to get into, it has a seriously slow start.

 

All the other books are children's books, but these 2 are more adultish or at least high school.

 

Ruth in NZ

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are 2 books on your list that are harder than the others IMHO: Last of the Mohicans and Kidnapped. Kidnapped has about 3 chapters in the middle that are extremely hard to get through because they are all about the politics of the times. So either read aloud those chapters, or have her skip them. Last of the Mohicans is very difficult to get into, it has a seriously slow start.

 

All the other books are children's books, but these 2 are more adultish or at least high school.

 

Ruth in NZ

 

Tkank you. Kidnapped is on the VP 6th grade list. They rate it as difficult, but it's nice to know what to look out for. I'll have to reread Last of the Mohicans. I put it on the list because it fits our history, I already have it, and I enjoyed it. I want her to enjoy it, though, so I may cross it off our list for now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tkank you. Kidnapped is on the VP 6th grade list. They rate it as difficult, but it's nice to know what to look out for. I'll have to reread Last of the Mohicans. I put it on the list because it fits our history, I already have it, and I enjoyed it. I want her to enjoy it, though, so I may cross it off our list for now.

 

 

 

I appreciate Ruth's comments on Kidnapped and Last of the Mohicans, as we did not read either of them. I'll just add: while we enjoyed Treasure Island (although, it's a lot darker in mood and tone than I expected!), we didn't care for Kidnapped -- just couldn't get into and put it down after the first 2 chapters. Perhaps it gets better...?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My 9 and 12 YO are really enjoying The Red Badge of Courage (Civil War). The use of language is very vivid, and DS9 loves recognizing so many vocabulary words from Caesar's English! Crane makes you virtually able to feel the smoke of the battlefield in your throat, and go dizzy from the dichotomy of the violence of the battle punctuated by the absurd sense that the sun was shining obliviously onward.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My 9 and 12 YO are really enjoying The Red Badge of Courage (Civil War). The use of language is very vivid, and DS9 loves recognizing so many vocabulary words from Caesar's English! Crane makes you virtually able to feel the smoke of the battlefield in your throat, and go dizzy from the dichotomy of the violence of the battle punctuated by the absurd sense that the sun was shining obliviously onward.

 

 

Thank you for the recommendation. I've never read it, because it was my mother's least favorite book from her lit classes. It was never assigned to me, and all I'd heard about it was, "I hated that book." It might have been too much to expect a Mennonite to like the battle scenes, though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...