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Topic: Book Recommendations for 8-10 yr olds

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Subject: Book Recommendations for 8-10 yr olds
Date Posted: 1/23/2009 4:09 PM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2008
Posts: 573
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I need help getting our readers to branch out. I work with reluctant readers. Many are reading below grade level. Please recommend books or authors appropriate for girls between the ages of 8-10. Please keep in mind, our girls are intimidated by 'thick' books. ((sigh))

Our shelves are currently a mix of elementary and middle school books and the length of the books are varied. I now have a couple of regular volunteers so we'd like to better organize our titles. I think if I can better arrange the books, more girls will check out books.

Your suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Date Posted: 1/23/2009 4:31 PM ET
Member Since: 6/25/2007
Posts: 5,637
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Kate DiCamillo is a good author for this age group. 

Polly Horvath writes excellent books. My favorite is probably Everything on a Waffle.

Avi is also almost always a good choice.

Meg Cabot has a series for girls around that age group. The first one is titled Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls: Moving Day

LInda Sue Park is also good, though some titles might skew a little bit older. I think Project Mulberry would be fine for 8-10 year olds.


Have you looked into Orca Books? They are a publisher specializing in high interest / low level books for all ages and reading levels.  http://us.orcabook.com/?countryID=USA



Date Posted: 1/23/2009 4:48 PM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2008
Posts: 573
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Thanks, Janelle

Don't know about Orca Books. I work more closely with older girls but we have an active elementary coordinator who brings the girls in regularly. He's a guy and he doesn't read kids books so he doesn't know how what to recommend.

Date Posted: 1/23/2009 4:55 PM ET
Member Since: 6/25/2007
Posts: 5,637
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You're welcome!

Orca has a great line of books for YA readers- Orca soundings. I've read a few, and they were well-done. The library list-servs I belong to rave about Orca for reluctant readers.

Date Posted: 1/23/2009 9:17 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
Posts: 1,334
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I have 2 boys, ages 8 and 10.  We'll be celebrating the 10 year old's birthday this weekend.   My boys love the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series.   The 8 year old even did a book report on the first one.    The 10 year old loves Dan Gutman's My Weird School series.    He also likes the Geronimo Stilton series.    And, for his Birthday I got him some of the graphic novels Bone by Roger Smith.     

My kids also enjoyed the Ricky Ricotta, Captain Underpants, and Melvin Beederman. 

I don't know if I helped or not, since you specifically mentioned books for girls.   Hope it helps.

Date Posted: 1/25/2009 10:23 AM ET
Member Since: 6/29/2008
Posts: 26,635
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The Amelia's notebooks series by Marissa Moss if fun for girls that age.

Book Description:

Designed to look like a girl's school notebook, with class schedule, entries similar to a diary's thoughts, drawings, the kind of cute and funny comments a young girl would make about her day, school and friends, and even a table of useful information on the last page. This is a book that is fun to read over and over...notice something new or different each time.
Date Posted: 1/25/2009 11:29 AM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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Is this 3-5 graders? I remember our teacher reading to us after lunch and I'd check the books out or buy them later..but I've always loved reading..but The Boxcar Children I really liked - they've continued the series after 'modernizing' them a bit but I still check them out of the library from time to time and have a lot of them on my shelf at home...I also liked Judy Blume's Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great' and I listened to Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and the Fudge books that tie into this other one..she was 'controversial' when I was a kid so of course I had to read them..I also like Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret.

also like The Secret Garden and Little House on the Prairie Books..I still re-read some of these. The Secret Garden was hard for me at first and I put it aside for a while because it starts off in India and I couldnt' pronounce cholera and didn't understand enough but I eventually got past that part and really enjoyed it with her planting a garden and sneaking around the house. Another mystery series I read a few  years ago(in my 30's then) but they're very thin and fun to solve are the Three Cousins Detectives. They're by a christian author but can't remember if they were preachy or not..think they just taught a lesson because preachy  usually t urns me off..but they're fun to read IMO.i fthey weren't so darned expensive I'd probably have them in my collection! they might be a bit young for this age group..fun when'  you 're a lot older but not a few years older...

Date Posted: 1/25/2009 7:08 PM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2008
Posts: 573
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We have the Blume titles. I'll be sure to put them on display. I've learned display books tend to get checked out.  Secret Garden is a large book not much hope for that one. We also have the Amelia Notebooks; will put those on display as well.

Looks like we have a lot of the right books. We just need to find a way to get the girls to check them out. 


Date Posted: 1/26/2009 11:50 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 52
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One series not mentioned so far is Cam Jansen.

Date Posted: 1/26/2009 3:37 PM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2008
Posts: 573
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What do you like about this series?

Date Posted: 1/26/2009 7:16 PM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2008
Posts: 573
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Today, my assistant and I put Blume books, Amelia , Judy Moody and DiCamillo on display. I also checked out Orca and added some of their titles to our wish list. Last, I requested some Cam Jansen titles.

Will let you all know how the girls respond.

Thank you,


Date Posted: 1/27/2009 9:58 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 52
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I haven't read the Cam Jansen books, but my oldest child has.  According to him they are exciting and full of good mysteries (Cam Jansen is a young girl detective and one of her friends usually gets pulled into the mysteries as well).

Subject: A Crooked Kind of Perfect
Date Posted: 2/3/2009 5:47 AM ET
Member Since: 5/12/2006
Posts: 26
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My daughter just got this book for Christmas, it was published by Scholastic, but I see it's do for release this spring. Anyway she loved it, and zoomed right through it. It has really super short chapters, many of them are less than a page. My daughter is a fifth grader who reads at grade level, but she struggles with small print and long chapters still. Dont' know the author, sorry she loaned it out to a classmate.

My daughter is 10. Last year she read several of the Hannah Montana books (not great classic liturature). They are based on the television series already familiar to most of the girls. They are definately not thick books.

Also the Junie B. Jones books.

My son was also a reluctant reader, (dyslexic actually) but books he read at that age that would also appeal to girls were the Amelia Bedilia books.

Books in a series are good. A lot of familiar language, reluctant readers get tripped up with proper nouns alot, trying to figure out names and places, a great deal of that is avoided by reading series books. He also read the Boxcar Children, and Little House books. (Already recommended).

The Magic Treehouse books are often recommended, but he struggled with the vocabulary and gave up.

For some reason the Hank the Cowdog Series was popular with both of my kids, dd is reading one now. Maybe because we live on a farm, I don't know if they appeal to kids in an urban environment or not.

For awhile my daughter read animal books. There are some with short stories about rescue dogs we got from Scholastic. I don't know the name I'm sorry. I've tried to think of some more animal books because they often appeal to certain types of kids. I know several of her friends read the Pony Pals books.

For girls into sports they might like some of the Matt Christopher books they definately appealed to my son. Most of the heros tend to be boys, I don't know if anyone is writing this sort of book for girls.

Subject: Thought of some more dd liked
Date Posted: 2/3/2009 1:26 PM ET
Member Since: 5/12/2006
Posts: 26
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A book about animals; Tippy Lemmay by McKissock (this is a really funny book about a dog that the kids think is trying to attack them). Very thin a quick read.

Horses - Misty of Chinoteaque by Marquerite Henery (she has several horse books all short unlike the Black Stallion Series).

The Third Grade Detectives

The Littles

Caddie Woodlawn


Last Edited on: 2/4/09 2:00 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/4/2009 11:12 PM ET
Member Since: 11/22/2008
Posts: 836
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I work with 7 and 8 year olds.  I find the best way to get them to read is to peak their interest in a "series" by using it as my read aloud story.  For independent reading......offer to share one of your "special" bookmarks if they need one.....amazing what a little bookmark can motivate!!  If you can get multiple copies, have them partner, or small group read.  They'll motivate each other.

Since you said they are reluctant......and a thick book would likely turn them off....I'd suggest any of the following series:  Cam Jansen, Jigsaw Jones, Horrible Harry,  Ready Freddy and Junie B. Jones.

All of these are chapter books.  The chapters are not overwhelming.  And the books are "thin" in appearance!  Most have 8 - 9 chapters.  IMO they would likely find success and interest in these stories. 

When I read any of the above series' books, my students moan when the chapter ends.  One little boy told me when I stop, and they have to wait for the next chapter tomorrow....it is just like when the commercial comes on during a good show!!!   lol  They love when I read 2 chapters!!  The school librarian always knows when I've started a new series......my whole class wants to borrow one!

Hope this helps, Cindy

Date Posted: 2/14/2009 11:03 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 2,667
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My 8 yr old  loves Cam Jansen Mysteries, A to Z Mysteries, The Diary of A Wimpy Kid, and she likes the Rainbow Fairy books by Daisy Meadows.

Date Posted: 4/5/2009 2:43 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 14
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How about Tuck Everlasting it is an interesting story and also a thin book. My shelf has many other good books for kids of that age group.

Date Posted: 4/17/2009 11:17 PM ET
Member Since: 4/16/2009
Posts: 11
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i have a few animal ark seires book, and some other books. I love horses and im reading a whole bunch of horse books that are for younger kids, there are around 150 pages proberly will get one on every week. most of my books are for younger girls. I also have some joke books, those will help kids read. Come and check out my shelf. Thanks