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Topic: Gathering ideas for summer reading for 5th to 6th graders

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Subject: Gathering ideas for summer reading for 5th to 6th graders
Date Posted: 5/6/2010 8:27 PM ET
Member Since: 10/12/2008
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My daughter is an avid reader and is currently working her way through the Newberry Award winners.   She has read the Harry Potter Serries, Percy Jacson series and  many of the Great Illustrated Classics.  I was hoping to get ideas of material she "should have read" before entering middle school. 

Date Posted: 5/7/2010 3:57 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
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Island of the Blue Dophins.  Classic.  Still great.

Ida B

Date Posted: 5/8/2010 6:01 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2007
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The summer between fifth and sixth grade is the time that schools generally encourage the introduction of historically based fiction in order to prepare children for the books they will be exposed to in the next few years.  Some good titles in this area are Summer of My German Soldier, Number the Stars, and The Endless Steppe.


I would also encourage drawing and twisting some of the things she's already read.  If she fell in love with Harry Potter, you might want to consider the Chronicles of Prydain books by Lloyd Alexander or the Redwall series by Brian Jaques.


As far as things she should have read by middle school, well, honestly she sounds like she is ahead of the pack.  The general things that are considered "must reads" in later elementary school are the same ones that are the "must reads" in middle school.  Old Yeller, Island of the Blue Dolphins, Tangerine, Charlottes Web, The Giver, The Face on the Milk Carton, Bud Not Buddy, Hoot, and Habibi.


I'm sure I could think of a million other books that are wonderful, but I'll stop for now.  Let me know if you have any other thoughts or questions.

Date Posted: 5/11/2010 1:26 AM ET
Member Since: 10/8/2006
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My daughter really enjoyed the Shadow Children my Margret Hadix. It is a series of 7 books that are really good. They are about a country where being a third child is illegal.

Sister Grims it is twist on classic fairy tales told from girls perspective. She loves them.

The Who was series is a great series to learn about famous people such as George Washington, Abe Lincoln, Bach, Bettles, Einstien.  It is more of a 4th grade level but my 6th and 7th grader still love them. A great way to learn some history and have some fun doing it!

Date Posted: 6/14/2010 1:04 PM ET
Member Since: 5/31/2009
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If she is at all into historical fiction or books that have a slight magic/fantasy element, anything by Tamora Pierce is excellent and she has written a lot so that would probably keep your daughter busy for a while.  I have a lot of books geared towards that age--some Newberry award winners, a lot of historical fiction and many others.   PM me if you like anything on my shelf and we can work out some kind of deal.

Date Posted: 6/16/2010 4:17 AM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
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Julie of the Wolves, The Witch of Blackbird Pond, Holes (I personally didn't care for this one very much), The Bridge to Terabithia, The Mermaid Summer (out of print, but available on PBS and one of my all-time favorite books), Call it Courage, Two Suns in the Sky, The Farthest-Away Mountain (also out of print, but on PBS, and another all-time favorite), The My Teacher is an Alien series by Bruce Coville, The Indian in the Cupboard series, Sand Dollar Summer, Time Windows by Kathryn Reiss (another favorite), Stonewords: A Ghost Story, Words of Stone by Kevin Henkes, Peter and the Starcatchers series.

Date Posted: 6/18/2010 8:24 AM ET
Member Since: 4/12/2010
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My son is going into 6th grade and he was given a reading list...he has to read one book on the list and fill out the "plot chart" they were given.  He's debating between Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and The Hobbit.

Date Posted: 6/18/2010 2:29 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
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Hmm. Tough call. But I would probably say "The Hobbit".

Date Posted: 6/19/2010 8:33 AM ET
Member Since: 4/12/2010
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I think he's leaning toward that one.  I've read reviews, and a lot of people have said it's a fairly easy read for his age.

Date Posted: 6/19/2010 2:23 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
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I think some of the humor in "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" might be lost on someone in his age bracket, but it will depend on the child. I read "The Hobbit" when I was in 9th grade for the first time and I remember really liking it. And I knew the story because in school we always watched the old cartoon version. I must have seen that in 1st grade!

Date Posted: 6/20/2010 5:28 PM ET
Member Since: 7/25/2007
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I remember reading The Hobbit in 6th or 7th grade.  The whole class loved it.  We had to chronicle the book with murals.  Each group was given a section of the book and we painted a large piece of (white) butcher paper.  When completed, we could see how each group envisioned their section of the book all around the classroom.  It was pretty cool.  I'm sure your son will enjoy the book immensely.

Date Posted: 7/11/2010 5:56 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2006
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So many great suggestions, "the Hobbitt" and "Peter and the Starcatchers" especially. I haven't read it, but my daughter really enjoyed "Inkheart" at that age. Also the "Young Bond" series by Charles Higson.

I really needed more suggestions too...its the age between children's books and teen or young adult. We visited our library weekly, our local children's librarian was very helpful. Still is, she knows what our DD likes, and makes recomendations.


Date Posted: 7/11/2010 6:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
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I'm going to copy/paste an email of suggestions I sent to my friend for her 10-year-old niece. I think some might be duplicates to what's already been posted, but there are probably a few new ones:

1. "The Mermaid Summer" by Mollie Hunter. I re-read this one last month as well and still love it.
2. "The Ordinary Princess" by M.M. Kaye. I read this one in junior high and loved it.
3. "Just Ella" by Margaret Peterson Haddix. Kind of a feminist Cinderella tale. Read it in college. Am never parting with my copy.
4. "Ella Enchanted" by Gail Carson Levine. A Cinderella type story where the fairy botches up her happy ending with a "gift". It still ends happily, don't worry!
5. "Mad, Mad Monday" by Herma Silverstein. I read this one in 7th grade and adored it. It's out of print, but last time I checked, there were copies on PBS. It's a
     cute story about girl meets ghost.
6. "Running out of Time" by Margaret Peterson Haddix. Really, you can't go wrong with anything by her. This one is kind of like "The Village" but age appropriate for
7. "The Princess Diaries" by Meg Cabot. She may have read these already, but if not, they are so much fun. I love them. It's a 10+ book series. I was so sad when it ended.
8. "The Witch of Blackbird Pond" by Elizabeth George Speare. I read this one when I was in 8th grade but I bet she could handle it. It's a Newberry winner, I think.
9. "The Island of the Blue Dolphins" by Scott O'Dell. Also has a kind of sequel if she likes this one.
10. "Julie of the Wolves" by Jean Craighead George. Read this in school and still remember it to this day. Need to re-read it...
11. "The Giver" by Lois Lowry. Awesome book!
12. "Call it Courage" by Armstrong Perry. Read it in 7th grade. Kind of a coming of age/adventure novel. Might appeal more to boys, but I loved it.
13. "The Tail of Emily Windsnap"  series by Liz Kessler. About a girl who finds out she is a mermaid. This author also has another series out that looks cute.
14. "The Sisters Grimm" series by Michael Buckley. Haven't read any of these yet, but they look fun. I have the first one and hope to get to it soon.

Date Posted: 9/1/2010 5:23 PM ET
Member Since: 7/27/2009
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The Dear america series

Series of unfortunate events

Nancy drew

the five ancestors


Artemis Fowl

Mary Poppins (series)

Are you there god? It's me Margaret.

Subject: A little late...:)
Date Posted: 9/23/2010 2:58 AM ET
Member Since: 6/2/2009
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My kid is about the same age bracket and really likes


 KATHRYN LASKY who writes the series Gardians of Ga'Hoole.

Also loves ERIN HUNTER and the Septimus Heap books by ANGIE SAGE.

A few more you might try are Flanagan's Ranger's Apprentice series ( I really enjoyed these )and   The City of Ember by DuPRAU

Last Edited on: 9/23/10 3:00 AM ET - Total times edited: 2