Tag Archives: disability

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’m Thankful For

21 Nov

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This list could go on forever, so I tried to force myself to keep to titles that I’m thankful for that were published this year in middle grade fiction. I still had a lot more titles that I would love to highlight, but here’s what I came up with for my list:

  1. The First Rule of Punk by Celia P. Pérez
  2. Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling
  3. The Perfect Score by Rob Buyea
  4. The Exact Location of Home by Kate Messner
  5. Forget Me Not by Ellie Terry
  6. The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street by Karina Yan Glaser
  7. Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
  8. Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan
  9. Refugee by Alan Gratz
  10. Auma’s Long Run by Eucabeth Odhiambo

What books are you thankful for this year?


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish

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Picture Book Month: Courage

20 Nov

20An inspirational story about never giving up and working hard to reach your goal. Emmanuel was born with a fully developed leg and in an area of Ghana where having a disability was seen as a curse and bad luck. But his mother never gave up on him, teaching him to never give up and to continue to work hard for what he wanted. Emmanuel went to school, worked to help support his family and even rode a bicycle around Ghana to promote the rights of people with disabilities in Ghana. Emmanuel now works with educators, members in the government and organizations to help others with disabilities gain access to wheelchairs as well as reach for their own potential.
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Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Want My Future Children to Read

14 Nov

There are so many amazing books available to kids in this day and age. It was hard to pick just ten, but I focused on ten titles that show a wide diversity in terms of culture, gender, race, ability, socioeconomic status and more. It’s important for kids to see all different type of people in books and I think these titles are a great place to start for middle grade readers looking for diversity.

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  1. Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan
  2. Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate
  3. Crossover by Kwame Alexander
  4. The First Rule of Punk by Celia C. Pérez
  5. George by Alex Gino
  6. Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai
  7. Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart
  8. The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher by Dana Alison Levy
  9. Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper
  10. Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 3/27/17

27 Mar


finally finished Carmer and Grit: The Wingsnatchers by Sarah Jean Horowitz – it took me quite a while to finish and it wasn’t because I didn’t enjoy reading it, for whatever reason it just took me some time. It’s the perfect book if you have a middle grade reader who likes fairies and magic but is also interested in adventure and science.

I also sat down over the weekend and read two other books that have been on my radar for awhile – Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate and Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan.  Home of the Brave is written in verse, making it a quick read, but a powerful one.  Kek travels from war-torn Sudan to America by himself to live with his aunt and cousin. He learns about snow, the grocery store and helps a number of friends along the way. It’s the story of growing up and holding on to hope. Amina’s Voice is a newly published novel from Salaam Reads, an imprint of Simon & Schuster that, “aims to introduce readers of all faiths and backgrounds to a wide variety of Muslim children and families, and offer Muslim kids an opportunity to see themselves reflected positively in published works.” And what I like most about this story, is that it truly is a diverse story, but at the same time it’s the story of a girl in middle school dealing with family, friends and school – things that absolutely everyone has to deal with. And although her family and her community come in contact with hatred that is all too familiar in this world, the basis of the story is a young girl finding her voice and that’s what makes this diverse read so perfect. Plus, I absolutely love how gorgeous the cover is!

This coming week I plan to read The Unexpected Life of Oliver Cromwell Pitts by Avi and maybe even jump into some YA books – The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge and The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis that I thought about reading last week, but didn’t get a chance to dive into.


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Join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers and share all of the reading you have done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. Follow the links to read about all of the amazing books the #IMWAYR community has read. It’s the best way to discover what to read next

Middle Grade Gets Real – 25 Titles About Tough Topics

3 Mar

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There are arguments that kids shouldn’t read about tough topics – topics that include death, adoption/foster care, childhood illness, substance abuse, disability and more. But, how do kids learn about these topics if they don’t see them in their daily life? Or, how to kids feel less alone if they are dealing with these issues at home? Middle grades authors, for the most part, are very careful when dealing with tough topics when writing for their audience. Not, that they sugar coat these issues, but they provide a close look at a tough topic at an age appropriate level.

I love these types of books because it allows kids to really open up, ask questions and discuss topics that are often seen as taboo. But, how are kids supposed to learn? We’ve used at least a few of these titles during our middle school book discussion and the kids are always very insightful and full of questions which they feel comfortable enough to ask. Many students share their own experiences or discuss what they might do if they were in a certain situation. This open communication fills my heart and makes me so happy to hear because I truly believe that books and discussion can truly help educate young people about tough topics and how to react or what they can do when something happens in their own life.

#MGGetsReal is a collaboration of authors reaching out to kids about tough topics. And although the blog doesn’t look like much is happening, Kerry O’Malley Cerra, middle grade author, has an absolutely amazing list of titles on her website about all different types of tough topics.

Take a look at some of these amazing titles below and search for more online or by asking your local librarian. There are many more titles that I could have included and the only reason I didn’t was to make a prettier graphic, so what other titles would you offer for this booklist?

  1. George by Alex Gino
  2. The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher by Dana Alison Levy
  3. Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan
  4. Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes
  5. Booked by Kwame Alexander
  6. Pax by Sara Pennypacker
  7. Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eagar
  8. Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart
  9. See You At Harry’s by Jo Knowles
  10. Gertie’s Leap to Greatness by Kate Beasley
  11. Ruby On the Outside by Nora Raleigh Baskin
  12. One for the Murphys by Linda Mullaly Hunt
  13. Some Kind of Happiness by Claire Legrand
  14. The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner
  15. Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney
  16. Sunny Side Up by Jennifer & Matthew Holm
  17. Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper
  18. Lost In the Sun by Lisa Graff
  19. Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story by Nora Raleigh Baskin
  20. The Honest Truth by Dan Gemeinhart
  21. The Girl In the Well Is Me by Karen Rivers
  22. Paper Things by Jennifer Richard Jacobson
  23. Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate
  24. All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook by Leslie Connor
  25. Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin
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