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Books categorized as '3rd Grade'

Stella Diaz Has Something to Say

Stella Dias Has Something to Say by Angela Dominguez
Recommended for: Grades 2 and up

Stella Diaz, a Mexican-American girl living in Chicago, loves her fish, family, and best friend. Around others though, Stella is shy and nervous. These traits especially come out when she and her best friend are put in different classes this school year. The book follows Stella as she gains confidence from her classmates and family, and finds joy in dancing, drawing, and a spelling bee. It lightly touches on a few important issues like divorce (Stella has a not-so-great relationship with her father who lives in a different state) and split cultural and language identities (Stella sometimes confuses English and Spanish words and wishes she lived in Mexico with the rest of her family). Black and white illustrations offer a fun visual to the stories. In the end, you will be cheering alongside Stella as she finds her inner star during a school presentation. The character of Stella is instantly relatable, and you will quickly come to adore her sweetness and bravery. This is a great choice for anyone who loves Clementine. Plus – the story feels especially real since it is “89.2 percent” based on the author’s real life experiences.

Reviewed by: Mrs. Brown

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Some Writer! The Story of E.B. White

Some Writer! The Story of E.B. White by Melissa Sweet
Recommended for: Grades 3 – 7

E.B. White gave readers the very best of what children’s books are meant to be. (Think Charlotte’s Web, Stuart Little and Trumpet of the Swan.) In this well-researched biography, Melissa Sweet gives readers a peak into the amazing life of E.B. White. To document his youth in Mount Vernon N.Y, summers on the Belgrade Lakes in Maine, his work at the New Yorker, his writing of children’s books, and farming in Maine, Sweet uses White’s many letters, handwritten drafts, photos and her own collaged art. A Timeline and Selected Bibliography are included. Some Writer! has won a New York Times Bestseller, People Magazine Best Children’s Book, A Washington Post Best Book, A Publishers Weekly Best Book, and is a Boston Globe/Horn Book Nonfiction Award Honor recipient.

Reviewed by Mrs. Wettergreen

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The Truth of Me

the truth of me coverThe Truth of Me by Patricia MacLachlan
Recommended for: Grades 3 – 5

Robbie’s parents spend more time on their music than with him. Robbie is closer to his eccentric grandmother Maddy and loves summers spent with her while his parents tour with their Allegro Quartet.  This year Robbie also brings his dog Ellie and hopes she can get along with Maddy’s unique animal friends which include raccoons, deer and bears.  Robbie likes that Maddy makes his parents nervous with her unusual stories and animals.  Maddy’s love and guidance help Robbie learn a lot of “little truths” – about his mother, his grandmother and himself.  It is a summer of growth and acceptance and having the courage to make changes.

Reviewed by Mrs. McIntire

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The Bolds

The Bolds The Bolds by Julian Clary
Recommended for: Grades 3-6

An English couple are careless and get eaten by a crocodile while visiting Africa! Two clever hyenas dress in their discarded clothing, take their passports and return to the London suburbs to carry on living as “humans.” A spying, grouchy next door neighbor and an old hyena who needs to be rescued from a safari park lead to hilarious adventures. This book is full of jokes and antics that will leave you belly laughing and completely surprised at the end. A sequel is due out April 1, 2017….April Fools? No really. This is a great book for those who like the highly illustrated format of The Wimpy Kid, Judy Moody, Bad Kitty, Galactic Hot Dogs, and others.

Reviewed by Mrs. Baumgartner

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The Wild Robot

wild robot coverThe Wild Robot by Peter Brown
Recommended for: Grades 3-6

A robot named Roz washes ashore on an island when her shipping container gets tossed overboard in a storm at sea.  She studies her environment and learns from the animals how to communicate and survive in the wilderness.  She adopts a baby goose and eventually makes friends with the other animals of the island.  But one day, other robots come looking for her, and it is up to Roz and her island friends to decide her fate.  Can technology ever truly mesh with nature?  This story was exciting, interesting, unique, and touching.  It features some illustrations by the author, as well.

Reviewed by: Mrs. Waring

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Quinny and Hopper

Quinny and Hopper coverQuinny and Hopper by Adriana Brad Schanen
Recommended for: Grades 3 – 5

Quinny Bumble is very talkative, loud and friendly. She just moved from New York City to the country and is missing her many friends. Hopper is smart, quiet, cautious and has no friends. Can these two be friends? Other colorful characters include two younger sisters, two bullyish twin brothers and a lonesome, stylish, black and white striped chicken that won’t be caught.
Quinny and Hopper begin a friendship, but can it survive the start of school and Hopper’s fear of being rejected? This is a fun and amusing story of two unlikely friends.

Reviewed by: Mrs. McIntire

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Save Me a Seat

save me a seat coverSave Me a Seat by Sarah Weeks and Gita Varadarajan
Recommended for: Grades 3-6

5th graders Joe and Ravi may seem very different, but they have a few things in common. Ravi just arrived from India, and is adjusting to life in the United States. Joe is adjusting to the challenges of staying under the radar while his mom is the new cafeteria aide. Both boys are quickly judged by their peers, misunderstood, and tormented by the same bully, Dillon Samreen. Told in alternating chapters from Joe’s and Ravi’s point of view, this story takes place over one week of school. If you like the Mr. Terupt books by Bob Buyea or the Wonder books by R.J. Palacio, give Save Me a Seat a try.

Reviewed by: Mrs. Waring

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Fuzzy Mud

Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar
Recommended for: Grades 3-5

To escape the wrath of class bully Chad, Marshall and Tamaya take a hidden route home through the woods adjoining their school. Undaunted, Chad finds them, and in their defense Tamaya throws a handful of woodland mud at him. The plot thickens when this mud, found to be tainted by waste from a nearby research facility, grows “fuzzy” and painful on contact. Parents, doctors, nurses, teachers and students contend with the consequences on the homefront, while the U.S. Senate holds the ‘Heath Cliff Disaster Hearings’ in order to prevent future environmental disasters. This intense story was a real page-turner, and I couldn’t wait to see how it would turn out.

Reviewed by: Mrs. Wettergreen

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Fortunately, the Milk

fortunately the milk coverFortunately, the Milk by Neil Gaiman
Recommended for: Grades 3 – 6

While their mum is away at a conference, two sisters find they can’t have breakfast because there is no milk. Their dad reluctantly agrees to get milk at the corner store. After a REALLY long time, he returns and tells them an adventurous tale of being abducted by aliens in a spaceship – and that was just the beginning. Did they believe him? I enjoyed the wild and hilarious frolic through time & space.

Reviewed by: Mrs. McIntire

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Number of comments: 1


I Survived the Attacks of September 11, 2001

I survived the attacks of September 11, 2001 coverI Survived the Attacks of September 11, 2001 by Lauren Tarshis
Recommended for: Grades 2 – 5

Lucas suffered a concussion playing football and is told by his parents that he must quit. Devastated by the news, Lucas needs to talk to the man who taught him to play football, his dad’s firefighter friend Benny. Lucas skips school and takes the train into the city to talk to Benny at the firehouse. The beautiful day suddenly becomes a nightmare as the nearby Twin Towers are attacked and Benny and the rest of the firemen rush to the scene. Lucas’s dad is also called into the firehouse, but meets up with Lucas first. They have a close call when the first Tower collapses and Lucas’s dad has to abandon his attempt to find the rest of his crew. Then all they can do is wait and hope the crew will be safe. Like all the “I Survived” books, this one is a really gripping story!

Reviewed by Mrs. McIntire

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Number of comments: 1