Ideas are all Around by Philip C. Stead
Philip Stead takes readers on a first-person narrative on how ideas and inspiration surround us. Walking with his dog, talking with friends, observing animals, this quiet story (autobiography?) resonates with wonder and appreciation for the beauty of the natural world. Perfect for upper elementary students in need of writing inspiration. (Ages 7+)
A Hungry Lion…or a dwindling assortment of animals by Lucy Ruth Cummins
Once upon a time, there were numerous animals, including a hungry lion. With the help of the animals, the lion finds something to eat…but it’s not what you expect. Darkly humorous with many opportunities to infer and predict, this has read-aloud appeal for all ages. (Ages 5+)
The Great Pet Escape by Victoria Jamieson
After an ingenious escape from his locked cage, GW the hamster makes tracks to find – and free – his friends and fellow class pets Biter the guinea pig and Barry the rabbit. Reunited and ready to flee, GW and pals realize that they aren’t the only ones in the building…and like at school, seniority rules. A graphic novel for emerging and transitioning readers. (Ages 6-9)
Game Changer: John McLendon and the Secret Game by John Coy
Duke University is known as a college basketball powerhouse. But in the 1940’s, the all-white team secretly – and illegally – met to play the North Carolina College of Negros in the first non-segregated basketball game. An important and true story on the need for inclusivity, understanding, and acceptance. (Ages 7+)
A Poem for Peter by Andrea Davis Pinkney
On the 100th anniversary of Keats’s birth in 1916 comes the story of his life. From his early years in poverty to his time in WWII to creating the character of Peter as inspired by a series of pictures of an African American boy, the life and impact of Keats is remembered and celebrated. Releases 11.01.16 (Ages 7+)
Some Kind of Courage by Dan Gemeinhart
Orphaned after the deaths of his parents and sister in 1890, 12 year old Joseph has but one reason to live: his horse, Sarah. When his alcoholic caregiver sells her, Joseph sets off across Washington State, determined to be reunited. He befriends Ah-Kee, a young Chinese boy and together they face unscrupulous adults, rugged terrain, and destructive weather as they journey toward the one thing that matters: family. (Ages 9-12)
Colleague and fellow PSESD 2016 presenter Julie Hembree created the fabulous book trailer for Some Kind of Courage. SO well done!
The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner
Ice-fishing with her best friend Drew terrifies her, but each catch earns Charlie more money toward her Irish dancing dress. When she pulls out a small, striped fish with emerald eyes, Charlie hears it whisper “Release me…and I will grant you a wish”. Skeptically, she wishes to not be afraid of the ice…and she’s stunned when it works! Soon, Charlie heads to the ice to make more wishes: for a boy to like her, for her friend to pass a test. But the day her family discovers her older sister’s heroin addiction sends Charlie to trek fearlessly onto thin ice to make one last, desperate, heartbreaking wish. (Ages 9-12)
Curious for more on The Seventh Wish? Read here.