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help rounding out 5th grade lit?

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It's my 5th time planning for 5th grade and I'm still making book list posts. :lol: 

 

I need more humor for sure. And something more modern. Piles of great children's classics I have! I have some historical, some adventure, the typical girly classics and some boy protagonists too, a touch of fantasy.

For fourth her favorites were the ones that had her cackling so hard in the back room that everyone in the house knew she was reading her lit. Peter Pan probably caused that the most. Trumpet of the Swan. Next she liked the ones that made her care and think. The Giver, Bridge to Terebithia, etc. She begged for sequels to Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler. The only one she handed back and said she just couldn't get into was The Twenty-One Balloons. I made her a stack I thought would last more than the whole school year and she chose which one she read next. (It's February and there's four left...lol.)

The girl will be 10, turning 11 mid-fifth grade. She's very much still a little kid and not tweeny. Fabulous reader, but still (comically) afraid of really fat books. :laugh:

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Maybe the Melendy quartet (or others by Elizabeth Enright)..

 

Five Children and It (or others by E. Nesbit)

 

Half Magic (or others by Edward Eager)

 

The Ordinary Princess, by M. M. Kaye

 

 

Around that age I was able to get some of the humor lurking in poetry better--  A. A. Mile was funny, not just cute. 

Edited by Zoo Keeper
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Check out this past thread: "Fun sweet literature-rich experience for my 5th grader (girl)"

 

similar to Trumpet of the Swan in humor style

- Ginger Pye (Estes)

- The Rescuers, Miss Bianca, The Turret, Miss Bianca in the Salt Mines, Miss Bianca in the Orient (Sharp)

- By the Great Horn Spoon (Fleischman)

- The Whipping Boy (Fleischman)

- Half Magic, Magic By the Lake, Knight's Castle, The Time Garden, Seven Day Magic (Eager)

 

humorous -- some of these are more "popcorn"/snack books than others ;) :

- Wayside School Stories (Sacher)

- Fortunately, The Milk (Gaiman)

- The 13 Story Treehouse (Griffiths)

- The Hobokan Chicken Emergency (Pinkwater)

- Whales on Stilts (Anderson) 

- Calvin and Hobbes comic collections (Watterson)

- Series of Unfortunate Events (Snickett)

- H.I.V.E.: Higher Institute of Villainous Education (Walden)

- The Fake Moustache (Angleberger)

- Yoda Origami (Angleberger) -- and sequels

- Time Warp Trio series (Scieszka)

- How to Train Your Dragon (Cowell)

- Lemonade War series (Davies)

- Humphrey the hamster series (Birney)

- Hoot (Hiaasen)

- A Year Down Yonder (Peck)

- How to Eat Fried Worms (Rockwell)

- Middle School series (Patterson)

- Frindle (Clements)

- Fudge, Super Fudge (Blume)

- The Great Brain (Fitzgerald)

 

higher reading level books that have humor in them (though not straight-up comical):

- The 13 Clocks (Thurber)

- Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Carroll) -- Mad Hatter/tea party chapter -- DSs laughed out loud

- The Reluctant Dragon (Grahame)

- Anne of Green Gables (Montgomery)

- some of the Just So stories (Kipling)

- Cheaper By the Dozen (Gilbreth)

- All Creatures Great and Small (Herriot)

 

"thinking" books

- sequels to The Giver: Gathering Blue, Messenger, Son

- Tuck Everlasting (Babbit)

- The Search for Delicious (Babbit)

- Maniac Magee (Spinnelli)

- City of Ember, People of Spark, Diamond of Darkhold (du Prau)

- Enchantress from the Stars (Engdahl)

- Below the Root (Snyder) -- sequel And All Between is also good

(3rd book --Until the Celebration -- is not well-written and has a very dark/sudden ending -- you can easily read just books 1 and 2 and not miss out, as #2 feels completed, not like the 2nd of a trilogy and the middle of a story)

 

ideas somewhat along the lines of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

Chasing Vermeer, The Calder Game, The Wright Three (Balliet)

- Friday Barnes (Spratt)

- Lemoncello's Library series (Grabenstein)

- 68 Rooms Adventures (Malone)

- The Toothpaste Millionaire (Merrill)

- The House With a Clock in it's Walls (Bellairs) -- lightly creepy mystery in a fun way

 

books we read in 5th grade and loved:

- The Phantom Tollbooth (Juster)

- My Side of the Mountain (George)

- The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (Aiken)

- In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson (Lord)

- The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (Robinson)

- The Ordinary Princess (Kaye)

Edited by Lori D.
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PS -- forgot to add some Modern titles -- some are serious/thinking books, some are lighter; most of the modern titles I can think of are more geared for middle school ages...

 

- Wonder (Palacio)

- Mockingbird (Erskine)

- Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life (Mass) -- and others by Wendy Mass

- books by Andrew Clements

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What's your current list? I don't want to repeat anything!

 

Before you answer, I will never not recommend Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer, so put that on your list now. Also The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher.

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CPSTAnne - More the merrier! 

 

Zoo Keeper - Yes, poetry! I keep pondering a few poetry books and setting them back on the shelf. Kids get "too old" for things and it takes awhile for them to get old enough to enjoy them again. Maybe I'll throw some in my read aloud time to see if I can peg her...

 

Lori D. - I just love your lists. Thank you for taking the time! Has someone compiled your posts into a pretty, glossy book for homeschool moms to drool over yet? :001_wub: Your main list in the thread you linked! Yes! I asked my college girl if my pencil scratched list looks too girly. She looked it over, smiled, and said the boy protagonists can just wait for 6th grade. :laugh: 

Tanaqui - I left my list off intentionally. LOL I'd rather work around repeats than make people try to think around a list. And my list feels imbalanced.  :wacko:  The classics are Anne of Green Gables, Heidi, Secret Garden, Little Women (now or 6th though?), Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and I threw Treasure Island and Swiss Family Robinson in for less girls. Hobbit, because Hobbit. Mrs. Frisbee and the Rats of Nimh, Caddie Woodlawn, Because of Winn-Dixie, Phantom Tollbooth. I had a few historical titles in here, until I noticed they were almost all American, and all girls! I'll add a couple children's Shakespeare versions, but no mythology because this year was immersed in it.

 

She reads a ton. Easily a book a week during most of the year. Today she "accidentally" read 12 chapters in her reader. 

Maybe the real lesson here is this list wants to be feminine and I need to ignore that must. have. variety. urge. :laugh:

 

 

I can't wait to look up every book! I'll be holding down a park bench waiting for a kid to get out of choir this afternoon, and people will probably think I'm one of those device obsessed moms ignoring their children. Because books. :p

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She reads a ton. Easily a book a week during most of the year. Today she "accidentally" read 12 chapters in her reader. 

 
LOL!
 

...I asked my college girl if my pencil scratched list looks too girly. She looked it over, smiled, and said the boy protagonists can just wait for 6th grade. :laugh: 

 

Agree. :)

 

A few more titles with girl protagonists:

- The Birchbark House (Erdrich)

- The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate (Kelly) -- and sequels

- Baby Island (Brink)

- Nim's Island (Orr)

- Two Are Better Than One (Brink)

- the "Shoes" books (Streatfeild)

- The Penderwicks series (Birdsall)

- Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and me, Elizabeth (Konigsberg)

 

These may be more of middle school level or for "thinking" books:

- Moon Over Manifest (Vanderpool)

- The War That Saved My Life (Bradley)

- A Wrinkle in Time (L'Engle) followed by When You Reach Me (Stead)

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Okay, that's valid! Lemme see what I can come up with. I'm going to try to remember to shove more boy protagonists on this list, but who the heck knows. Mostly these are "fun" books - good, but not too serious. I'm so over sad books!

 

 

The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher

How Tia Lola Came to Stay

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer

Ambassador and Nomad by William Alexander (gotta do both books)

Cosmic

Time Traveling With a Hamster

Kinda Like Brothers

Year of the Dog

The First Rule of Punk

Hello, Universe

Blackbird Fly

The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm

Mission Mumbai

Bud, Not Buddy

Mars Evacuees

A Single Shard

Heart of  a Samurai

The Jumbies

Dragonwings

The Way Home Looks Now

The Earthsea cycle

Zahrah, the Windseeker

Akata Witch

Hammer of Witches

On Two Feet and Wings

Birchbark House

 

ETA:

 

The Truth About Twinkie Pie

Stef Soto, Taco Queen

Doll Bones (spooky!)

Breadcrumbs

Save Me a Seat (definitely a comparative lightweight, but fast)

Ash Mistry (it's a trilogy, sometimes hard to find in the US)

Paper Wishes

Ghost by Jason Reynolds

The Midnight War of Matteo Martinez (another lightweight)

Garvey's Choice (haven't read this yet)

One Crazy Summer

Unidentified Suburban Object

Oddity (OMG MUST READ)

As Brave As You

Brendan Buckley's Universe and Everything In It

 

As always, what I consider appropriate and what you consider appropriate may not be the same thing! You have to do the hard work of pre-reading.

 

Edited by Tanaqui
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 I thought of one more...when I was that age I LOVED the Borrowers series, by Mary Norton.  

 

Best read in order...

          The Borrowers, The Borrowers Afield, The Borrowers Afloat, The Borrowers Aloft, The Borrowers Avenged. 

 

 

 

  And the poetry bit-- I was reading Milne (Pooh books and the poems) to my first grader, and the older kids (all 10 and up) were laughing the loudest.  :) 

Edited by Zoo Keeper
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These thread always send me through the same cycle:

Ack! My kids don't read classics!

I'm a failure!

Well, before I panic maybe i can see what people suggest and put some of those on hold.

Oh, they have read that.

And that one!

Ooh, that one looks good!

Yay! Here comes Lori D.!

And Tanaqui!

All of my suggestions have become redundant, now.

But my library hold list is full!

Ah, life is good.

 

New I just need to pry some space into our days for more free reading.

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New I just need to pry some space into our days for more free reading.

 

The way I did it as a kid is this:

 

I was ahead of all my classes, so I read under the desk (6 hrs a day)

I didn't have any friends, so I read during my free time (the rest of the day)

Also, I never did my homework

 

...voila, space for free reading!

Alternatively, you can be happy your kids are being instructed on their level and have friends :D

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These thread always send me through the same cycle:

Ack! My kids don't read classics!

I'm a failure!

Well, before I panic maybe i can see what people suggest and put some of those on hold.

Oh, they have read that.

And that one!

Ooh, that one looks good!

Yay! Here comes Lori D.!

And Tanaqui!

All of my suggestions have become redundant, now.

But my library hold list is full!

Ah, life is good.

 

New I just need to pry some space into our days for more free reading.

 

oh.my.goodness... Wiping away tears, I'm laughing so hard.  :smilielol5:

 

 

Happy reading! :)

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New edit: I just read Two Naomis which has been on my kidlit TBR pile for a while now, and it's eminently appropriate for that age group. Bonus points to the author for having one of the Naomis namedrop books that were printed in this century - so often, authors only seem to have their bookish characters read older books!

 

But now we're way heavy on the girl-main-character books again.

 

Try adding Pickle by Kim Baker, Dave at Night, Clayton Byrd Goes Underground (haven't read this yet), The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora (slightly older focus), How Lamar's Bad Prank Won a Bubba-Sized Trophy, The Boy at the End of the World, The Greenglass House, and Brave Story to mix more boys back in.

 

 

 

Edited by Tanaqui
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:lurk5:   Posting so I remember to come back and take notes.  My current 4th grader is stuck on Nancy Drew, so we need a little variety.  She's also intimidated by fat books, lol!  

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She's also intimidated by fat books, lol! 

 

From the books I already listed, the Tia Lola books are pretty skinny, as is Unusual Chickens and also A Single Shard. And I didn't list these (trying to not go too heavy in the female protagonist direction...!) but I think that Gabby, Lost and Found and Ally, First at Last are both comparatively thin as well.

 

And if you're okay with graphic novels as part of your lineup, well, they're a bit thicker but you might try Roller Girl, Nimona, Zita the Space Girl, and Smile. Oh, and Amelia Rules.

 

Edit: Also, come to think of it, whoever it is who wrote Catherine, Called Birdy wrote a lot of historical fiction and they're all a lot thinner than most kidlit these days is. But I think that they're a little tough for the average fifth grader, both in the language choices and also themes.

 

 

Edited by Tanaqui
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My 5th grader just demolished Shakespeare Stealer and Tuck Everlasting, both with high praise.

 

For fun/funny, thin-ish and boy, he loves the Alcatraz series by Sanderson, though they're more free read quality than literature list quality, imo. :) There's also always The Series of Unfortunate Events.

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This is such a fun thread! ♥ I had Shakespeare Stealer out but put it back on the shelf for some reason. I think we have the trilogy. Hm. I just ransacked our history shelves and pulled things that she'd probably be "too old" for by the time we get there in our history cycle to refill her 4th grade pile...lol.

 

 

In case anyone was wondering, I'm taking my college girl's and Lori's advice to let the list be heavily feminine. I'll focus my variety need on the themes and genres. :laugh: 

 

About that fat book thing. I'll LOAD that shelf with unintimidating good books, but I want to try chipping away at that flight reaction. She's Officially Stubborn so it will work better if it seems like it was her idea all along. I figure she just hasn't found the right fat book to make her swoon yet.  I'mma "accidentally" leave a Selznick open on her bed.  :P

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I had Shakespeare Stealer out but put it back on the shelf for some reason. I think we have the trilogy...

 

Even though it's a male protagonist, it's a fun, fast-read trilogy, with a detective/mystery element, as well as the historical setting. :)

 

 

... I just ransacked our history shelves and pulled things that she'd probably be "too old" for by the time we get there in our history cycle to refill her 4th grade pile...lol.

 

Super idea! While we did read a lot of books that were connected to our history period, I absolutely did not stick to that exclusively, as we would have missed out on a TON of fabulous books when DSs were just the right age for them. :)

 

 

...In case anyone was wondering, I'm taking my college girl's and Lori's advice to let the list be heavily feminine. I'll focus my variety need on the themes and genres.  :laugh:

 

:hurray:

 

 

About that fat book thing. I'll LOAD that shelf with unintimidating good books, but I want to try chipping away at that flight reaction. She's Officially Stubborn so it will work better if it seems like it was her idea all along. I figure she just hasn't found the right fat book to make her swoon yet.  I'mma "accidentally" leave a Selznick open on her bed.   :p

 

:laugh:  Awesome!

 

Note to both you and Another Lynn: A lot of the books on my list are not fat books. :)

 

Note to Another Lynn: A number of the books on my list ARE at a 6th-8th grade reading list, but that's because SilverMoon listed books her DD was reading, and it looked like she could handle some more advanced books. Would you like some additional titles that are more at a 4th-6th grade level for your DD?

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Note to both you and Another Lynn: A lot of the books on my list are not fat books. :)

 

Note to Another Lynn: A number of the books on my list ARE at a 6th-8th grade reading list, but that's because SilverMoon listed books her DD was reading, and it looked like she could handle some more advanced books. Would you like some additional titles that are more at a 4th-6th grade level for your DD?

 

Lori, 

Thank you so much for the offer!  Yes!  I'd love to see some titles aimed slightly lower if you have a chance.  (I haven't been back to the thread in a while because I was burying my head in the sand regarding next year, lol!)  Thank you for thinking of me!

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Lori, 

Thank you so much for the offer!  Yes!  I'd love to see some titles aimed slightly lower if you have a chance.  (I haven't been back to the thread in a while because I was burying my head in the sand regarding next year, lol!)  Thank you for thinking of me!

 

Here are a few shorter books in the grade 4-6 range to get you started. I'll try to get back to this thread when I can to add some more ideas.

 

poetry

- Love That Dog (Creech) -- 95 pages

 

animals

- Shiloh (Naylor) - 144 pages

- The Incredible Journey (Burnford) -- 166 pages

- Rascal (North) -- 190 pages

 

talking animals

- Cricket in Times Square (Selden) --144 pages

- The Rescuers (and sequels) (Sharp) --160 pages

 

humorous

- By the Great Horn Spoon (Fleischman) -- 224 pages

- Ben and Me (Lawson) -- 144 pages

- Mr. Revere and I (Lawson) -- 152

- In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson (Lord) -- 176 pages

- The Whipping Boy (Fleischman) -- 96 pages

 

adventure

- Nim's Island (Orr) -- 125 pages

- Baby Island (Brink) -- 160 pages

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (Aiken) -- 167 pages

 

realistic

- The Toothpaste Millionaire (Merrill) -- 144 pages

- The School Story (Clements) -- 196 pages

- Frindle (Clements) -- 112 pages

- No Talking (Clements) -- 146 pages

 

mystery

- From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (Konigsburg) -- 168 pages

 

historical

- The Kite Fighters (Park) -- 144 pages

- See-Saw Girl (Park) -- 96 pages

- Shakespeare Stealer (Blackwood) -- 216 pages

- All of a Kind Family (Taylor) -- 192 pages

- Snow Treasure (McSwigan) -- 208 pages

- Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes (Coerr) -- 80 pages

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About that fat book thing. I'll LOAD that shelf with unintimidating good books, but I want to try chipping away at that flight reaction. She's Officially Stubborn so it will work better if it seems like it was her idea all along. I figure she just hasn't found the right fat book to make her swoon yet. I'mma "accidentally" leave a Selznick open on her bed. :P

This played out by me laying The Invention of Hugo Cabret open on her bed, about a quarter in, to a page with a lovely illustration and some text on the other side, at the foot where her big sister climbs to get to her bed, and flipped a blanket partially over it. (Hugo Cabret is pretty fat, but half charming illustrations. ;) )

 

"Was someone reading in here??? ..... It looks KIND of interesting.... Maybe it was College Girl."

 

The other sister: "I wasn't on your bed. What book is it?" ..... "Oh I love that book! But it wasn't me."

 

She questioned a brother too and carried it around, careful not to lose the place. College girl finally came home and was asked if SHE'D been reading in there. "Uh.. Maybe. What is it?..... Oh I love that book! *whispers* You should just go read it."

 

She glared skeptically over the top of her glasses and walked off with the book.

 

Next morning, "Hey Mom, could this be my literature book this week?"

 

It lasted three days.

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This played out by me laying The Invention of Hugo Cabret open on her bed, about a quarter in, to a page with a lovely illustration and some text on the other side, at the foot where her big sister climbs to get to her bed, and flipped a blanket partially over it. (Hugo Cabret is pretty fat, but half charming illustrations. ;) )

 

"Was someone reading in here??? ..... It looks KIND of interesting.... Maybe it was College Girl."

 

The other sister: "I wasn't on your bed. What book is it?" ..... "Oh I love that book! But it wasn't me."

 

She questioned a brother too and carried it around, careful not to lose the place. College girl finally came home and was asked if SHE'D been reading in there. "Uh.. Maybe. What is it?..... Oh I love that book! *whispers* You should just go read it."

 

She glared skeptically over the top of her glasses and walked off with the book.

 

Next morning, "Hey Mom, could this be my literature book this week?"

 

It lasted three days.

 

Love this! 

Great stealth tactics, SM! 

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I told my 5th grade do that there was a discussion here about 5th grade lit that other kids had liked and he insisted on looking up a LOT of titles! It's a good thing our library day is tomorrow!

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