Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Book Choices

Prior to the start of our first term here I sat down with each child in turn & asked them about some book selections & which ones most appalled to them. While they had a good amount of input the final choices are a mixed combination. I wanted books that would lure them in & that they'd want to keep reading. They've reached that point, after many long hard years, of being ready for this stage. VDP/SSS has held this point up & it's an exciting time for us to be able to say, "Oh you'll really love this book!"

The objective being that less is more & I don't want him feeling rushed through the year or frazzeled if he has any minor setbacks. The thing about VDP/SSS is that you have good days & you have bad days. I've been having a few bad days of late, I stumble over words, I trip, & I become incredibly frustrated. My kids understand they have them too. But good days are amazing & wonderful & we have far more great days lately then bad days.

I've also selected books that have a variety of lexile numbers/levels. I don't live & breathe by lexile numbers, but they help me see my child's progress which is really important. I need to know if he's slipping because it could easily mean we need to get him back in to see his specialist. It could just mean he's not using his glasses properly, either way I like to be aware. I've actually started considerably lower then the level he reads at for pleasure & fun, but I feel confident he'll enjoy thesebbooks.

Without further ado, here's the 8 books we select for our eldest, with affiliate links to Book Depository:

1. Flora & Ulysses --  This is a new book to us, but by a favourite author. We love Kate Dicamillo's books & have read most of them. When I spotted this book in a literature selection I had to go & find it. I have no idea how we missed this one, except that we had to put it on hold in our library & wait for it to be shipped up from the bottom of the state. It was so hard to contain my laughter while I was reading this. I've also loved hearing the giggles erupting from the chair. There's nothing quite like hearing, "She's giving the squirrel CPR.." This title mixes graphic novel with chapter & it's a really fun combination!

2. The Island Of Dr Libris --  Again, another new to us book that came highly recommended & really appeals to my boy. I'm still waiting for my copy to come in {& hoping he doesn't polish off Flora too quickly..} so I can't give you much insight to this book other then the synopsis on the back of the book.

3. Ella Enchanted -- I read this book years ago & fell in love with the author & the book. It was one of few books that I got to the end of & felt the need to read it all over again. It's about a young girl, Ella, who has a curse put on her by a fairy at birth. It's an accidental curse as the Fairy thinks she's doing a good thing, but in actuality Ella is now compelled to do exactly as she's told, regardless of how good or bad it is. This book tends to follow a fortunately unfortunately layout with the chapters, but that didn't hamper the delight I had when I first read it. Morgan tends to be drawn to the same stories I am & he really loves fantasy so I'm suspecting he'll equally enjoy this one.

4. Escape From Mr Lemoncello's Library -- This has been on my read list for a while, & as I was scanning the copious book lists I have around here I realised how great this book would be for my boy. After seeing Night At The Museum my kids talked about how cool it would be if that could happen in the library {aka Pagemaster, which funnily enough they've never seen or read..} they had all these characters they wanted to meet & chat to. My boy is also into games big time & the combination of these two in a book is just a win-win situation for him! I'm still pre-reading this one so I'll have to fill in more details about this down the road.

5. A Wrinkle in Time -- I actually read this book for the first time 12 years ago while pregnant with our second child. I had to make a 45 minute {one way} drive twice a day to deliver & collect Mr S from work. I checked out stacks of audio books to keep me awake on the long nightly drives while Morgan slept in the backseat. We watched the movie {did you know that exists?!} 2 years ago while everyone was down with some virus that hit us all {mercifully} in the same couple of days. The movie, as it turns out, is not nearly as good as I remembered the book. I think there are parts of this he'll love & parts of this he may not, but over all I think he'll enjoy the book. Sci-Fi is not my cup of tea, nor does it seem to be his, but this is a book that I absolutely loved, much to my own surprise.

6. Inkheart --  Another series I read years ago & when I got to the end I started it all over again because I simply had to go back & follow the chain of events again. This is most certainly a fantasy book in which people fall in, & out of, books. I strongly suspect he'll love this book, but he'll despise the ending because it's a major cliff hanger for the second book in the trilogy. I had originally planned to place this book last, & we still might, but Lexile wise it's a lower level then I anticipated.

7. The Evolution Of Calpurnia Tate -- Before you wrinkle your nose about the second word in this title, understand the meaning of it. This book is far more about the evolving of a little girl into a young lady as well as a naturalist. That is not to say that evolution is part of the story, not at all. Rather the story is about young Calpurnia, the only girl in a house of boys {I feel her pain} who's trying to find her place. She befriends her very grumpy grandfather & together they set out to find an undiscovered plant. Yes, Darwin's book is mentioned in the story, but it's mentioned historically in the fact that it's a banned book at this time. Grandfather does own a copy, but it's kept under lock & key.. This is more of a story I picked because it's a good story & it has value to it, & for that I think he'll appreciate it. Be a top favourite? I don't know, but I am curious to find out.

8. The Doldrums -- In all fairness this is another blind pick. I haven't read this book, & it may not even make the final cut because of that. However, while scanning for lexile numbers this one popped up & when we read the description he said it sounded like a great adventure story.

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