Tuesday, August 10, 2010

can't live without these books

Here is my list for the top ten picture books for 4th/5th graders. I am answering  Cathy's challenge http://reflectandrefine.blogspot.com/  from her blog 1. The Watertower by Gary Crewes. Boys love this book. Its science fiction which is really hard to find in a picture book.  The pictures have "clues" hidden in them. I had to read this book three times and really STUDY the illustrations to understand it.

2. Mysteries from History: The Mary Celeste written by Jane Yolen. She wrote four of these books but this one is my favorite. The text features are really interesting as well. If you can get the kids hooked on this one they will read all four.  
3. My Freedom Trip by Frances Park. I love this suspenseful story about a child escaping  from North Korea.4. Phillis Wheatley: A voice of Her Own. This is a beautiful picture book about a fascinating American poet.A great choice if you teach American History to kids because the setting is Boston during the Revolutionary War.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5. El Chino by Allen Say. Wonderful story about a Chinese-American who wants to be a bullfighter. Its a great book to use to teach the theme: Be yourself.

6. and 7. Eve Bunting is the best. It is hard for me to just pick one of her books for my top ten so I will pick two: Train to Somewhere and Gleam and Glow.
8. Netties Trip South by Anne Turner. This story, written as a letter to a friend back home, is about the conditions of slaves in the south right before the Civil War. Nettie witnesses a slave auction and it changes her perspective on her own life.

9. Molly Bannaky by Alice McGill. Molly becomes an indentured servant and moves to the American Colonies. Great choice if you teach American History as well.  (She is also the grandmother of Benjamin Banneker).

10. Up North In The Mountains by Marsha Wilson Chall is an easy book to make connections to . Its about a child who has fond memories of her days at the lake with her grandparents.Hope you enjoyed my list! Christine


  1. Love your list of books. Love the historical books so much! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Your love of historical lit and nonfiction is contagious! Very cool and original taste. I agree with Beverley, thanks for sharing!

  3. Great to see a wonderful Australian picture book is number one on your list. Have you seen the sequel called Beneath the surface and it is fabulous too.

    I have enjoyed reading your blog.