A HUGE thank you to Capability:Mom for creating this list. She knows Middle School children’s literature much better than I do. Needless to say, I picked an authority on the topic and am excited to read these books myself.
It’s much better, Dweck believes, to praise children for effective effort and explicitly teach them that mental skills can improve by persistence and work rather than praise them for their intelligence.
In my neighborhood, interfaith Jewish families are not unusual and yet there is a real scarcity of books on this topic. I searched online and then asked my local librarians when my original list wasn’t at my library to come up with this list. I hope you enjoy it as much I did. And I hope children of all faiths can read and discuss some of these books.
Paul Neruda’s childhood is the focal point of Ryan’s fictionalized novel. With regard to passion, Paul’s interest and gift for words was not embraced by his domineering and controlling father. His brother’s gift for classical voice was also rejected by their father in an effort to steer his sons into careers in engineering or medicine.
I am a BIG fan of the Singapore Math Workbook curriculum series that is used in Singapore (they speak English!). My kids use it to supplement University of Chicago’s Every Day Math which I don’t love as much (too New Math for me!). I find that Singapore Math is both visual and intuitive plus it has plenty of math fact practice that Every Day Math lacks.
I pair these two excellent books together because they tell two parts of the same story: the near eradication of the Snowy Egret caused by a fashion trend and the birth of the Audubon Society in Boston, Massachusetts.
This wondrous book is a book without words but no words are necessary because Multi-Caldecott winning author, David Wiesner, tells the story in pictures. And what a story it is! If you take your children to the Jersey Shore or any shore for that matter, and your child is a dreamer or artist, then this is the book to spark imaginations!
This is what I learned from Planet Earth, Our Extraordinary World Up Close! by Matthew Murrie and Steve Murrie:
-The black ink the octopus sprays in the face of pursuers is believed to disrupt their sense of smell.
– One Dugong can devour a bed of seagrass the size of a soccer field in one day!
My five-year-old son selected most of these funny picture books because they make us both laugh!