Winding down with some favorites

You know how sometimes we save the best for last?  While it’s impossible for me to ever choose a “best” book (because I love so many!) there are those tried-and-true special books that I return to often because they give me so much pleasure to read aloud and the kids seem to really enjoy them.

Esther Averill’s Jenny and the Cat Club is my go-to book for the end of the year for first grade.  It takes us three or four library times to read it and I’m always amazed by how well the kids listen to the story and retain the details even though a whole week goes by between chapters.  They love this collection of stories about Jenny, a black cat who lives with an old sea captain.  Jenny and a whole host of friends from the Cat Club solve problems and have adventures.  The book has a somewhat old-fashioned feel to it and is full of characters with great names like Romulus and Remus, Arabella, Macaroni, and Concertina.

Cynthia Rylant’s The Van Gogh Cafe is what I often read to the third grade at this point in the year.  It, too, takes three library periods to read.  It’s the story of a theater-turned-cafe in Flowers, Kansas where unusual things can happen, largely because of the theater magic in its walls.  It’s about grace and forgiveness and hope and compassion, and  it’s written in a way that makes these themes accessible to children.  Every chapter ends with a page-turner sentence and whenever I have to stop the kids say, “No!  Keep going!”

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Page Addition

Kids books facing out, Mill Park Library, Yarra Plenty Library service<span

Just wanted you all to know that as part of my Teacher Challenge blog spruce-up, I've added another page. Click here to see some of my tried-and-true elementary titles.