2011 Teacher's Choices-Intermediate Readers (Grade 3-5)

View all Recommendations by Age > Recommendations for Age 9-12 book lists; This list was last updated on 8/1/2013
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Since 1989,  the International Reading Association started the Teachers' Choices project  that will encourage young people to read. These are books that kids will enjoy—and that contribute to learning across the curriculum. Teachers and parents will  find exceptional for curriculum use or reading aloud uses. 

For more book recommendations, please check out New York Times® Best Sellers, Children's Book Recommendations or the complete list of Featured Book Lists and Award Winners

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release date: Dec 27, 2011
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Turtle in Paradise
In Jennifer L. Holm's New York Times bestselling, Newbery Honor winning middle grade historical fiction novel, life isn't like the movies. But then again, 11-year-old Turtle is no Shirley Temple. She's smart and tough and has seen enough of the world not to expect a Hollywood ending. After all, it's 1935 and jobs and money and sometimes even dreams are scarce. So when Turtle's mama gets a job housekeeping for a lady who doesn't like kids, Turtle says goodbye without a tear and heads off to Key West, Florida to live with relatives she's never met. Florida's like nothing Turtle's ever seen before though. It's hot and strange, full of rag tag boy cousins, family secrets, scams, and even buried pirate treasure! Before she knows what's happened, Turtle finds herself coming out of the shell she's spent her life building, and as she does, her world opens up in the most unexpected ways. Filled with adventure, humor and heart, Turtle in Paradise is an instant classic both boys and girls with love.

Includes an Author's Note with photographs and further background on the Great Depression, as well as additional resources and websites.

Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews:
"Sweet, funny and superb."

Starred Review, Booklist:
"Just the right mixture of knowingness and hope . . . a hilarious blend of family drama seasoned with a dollop of adventure."
release date: Oct 01, 2010
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World War II
In the years between 1939 and 1945, the world was plunged into a devastating global conflict.

From the children in bombed-out cities who were evacuated to the countryside, to the civilians working in munition factories, and the soldiers fighting on land, sea, and air, this book provides an incredible overview of this momentous time in our history. Learn how the war led to advances in technology, medicine, and weaponry, along with special features including life inside a U-boat and spy techniques. A dynamic design and full-color illustrations throughout help readers imagine what it was like for the brave men, women, and children who lived, and died, during World War II.
release date: Jan 01, 2011
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Ubiquitous
Summary:
0

About the Author:

Joyce Sidman lives in Minnesota, where she battles dandelions with great respect for their survival techniques. joycesidman.com

Beckie Prange lives in Ely, Minnesota, where she spends as much time as possible in the woods looking at lichens, crows, and other hardy northern species. Her first book received a Caldecott Honor. beckieprange.com

Author: Joyce Sidman
Illustrator: Beckie Prange
Publisher:Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Published Date:04/05/2010
Format:Hardcover
ISBN:0618717196
#of pages:#N/A
release date: Feb 02, 2010
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Survival at 40 Below
The award-winning Alaskan picture book duo is back with a look at the long arctic winter. As temperatures drop and the snow deepens, the animals that make the tundra home must ready themselves for survival. Follow the arctic ground squirrel as it begins the cycle of sleeping, supercooling, and warming that will occur at least a dozen times before spring arrives. See how the wood frog partially freezes itself in hibernation beneath layers of snow, or how the woolly bear caterpillars makes it through the winter months with a special antifreeze substance that prevents ice from forming in their bodies. Then when the temperatures finally rise and the snow begins to melt, these creatures emerge and the pulse of life returns to the arctic.
Debbie S. Miller's expert research and accessible writing will fascinate readers as Jon Van Zyle's signature style beautifully captures these animals and their habitat.
release date: Apr 29, 2010
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Stand Straight, Ella Kate
Ella Kate Ewing was born in 1872. She started out small, but she just kept on growing. Soon she was too tall for her desk at school, too tall for her bed at home, too tall to fit anywhere. Ella Kate was a real-life giant, but she refused to hide herself away. Instead, she used her unusual height to achieve her equally large dreams.

The masterful Klise sisters deliver a touching and inspiring true story about a strong-minded girl who finally embraced her differences. It?s the perfect book for every child who has ever felt like an outsider.

release date: May 01, 2012
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Out of My Mind
From award-winning author Sharon Draper comes Out of My Mind, the story of a brilliant girl who cannot speak or write.

“If there is one book teens and parents (and everyone else) should read this year, Out of My Mind should be it” (Denver Post).

Melody is not like most people. She cannot walk or talk, but she has a photographic memory; she can remember every detail of everything she has ever experienced. She is smarter than most of the adults who try to diagnose her and smarter than her classmates in her integrated classroom—the very same classmates who dismiss her as mentally challenged, because she cannot tell them otherwise. But Melody refuses to be defined by cerebral palsy. And she's determined to let everyone know it…somehow.

In this breakthrough story—reminiscent of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly—from multiple Coretta Scott King Award-winner Sharon Draper, readers will come to know a brilliant mind and a brave spirit who will change forever how they look at anyone with a disability.
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Muddy as a Duck Puddle and Other American Similes
This collection of similes from A to Z is as zany as a chigger chased around a stump. It includes rib-tickling folk expressions from Americans of all walks of life and all parts of the country in a bodacious tribute to both our country's diversity and pioneer heritage. There is a funny simile and uproarious illustration for each letter of the alphabet. Readers who are as curious as cats will enjoy the fascinating author's note that explores the origins of the expressions. A bibliography is included. 
release date: Jan 01, 2011
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Mockingbird
THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER and ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT NOVELS OF OUR TIME FOR YOUNG READERS

Caitlin has Asperger's. The world according to her is black and white; anything in between is confusing. Before, when things got confusing, Caitlin went to her older brother, Devon, for help. But Devon was killed in a school shooting, and Caitlin's dad is so distraught that he is just not helpful. Caitlin wants everything to go back to the way things were, but she doesn't know how to do that. Then she comes across the word closure--and she realizes this is what she needs. And in her search for it, Caitlin discovers that the world may not be so black and white after all.

"Powerful."--Publishers Weekly

"A strong and complex character study."--The Horn Book

"Allusions to Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, the portrayal of a whole community's healing process, and the sharp insights into Caitlyn's behavior enhance this fine addition to the recent group of books with narrators with autism and Asbergers."--Booklist
release date: May 13, 2010
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The Buffalo Are Back
The buffalo, an American icon once nearly extinct, has made a comeback. This stirring picture book tells the dramatic story, following bison from the Plains Indians to the cowboys, Teddy Roosevelt to the Dust Bowl, and from the brink of extinction to the majestic herds that now roam our national parks. Paired with gorgeous paintings by landscape artist Wendell Minor, Jean Craighead George's engaging text will inspire a new generation to understand and protect nature's delicate balance.
release date: Feb 23, 2010
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Bag in the Wind
In a singular first children's book, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Ted Kooser follows a plastic bag on its capricious journey from a landfill into a series of townspeople's lives.

One cold morning in early spring, a bulldozer pushes a pile of garbage around a landfill and uncovers an empty plastic bag — a perfectly good bag, the color of the skin of a yellow onion, with two holes for handles — that someone has thrown away. Just then, a puff of wind lifts the rolling, flapping bag over a chain-link fence and into the lives of several townsfolk — a can-collecting girl, a homeless man, a store owner — not that all of them notice. Renowned poet Ted Kooser fashions an understated yet compassionate world full of happenstance and connection, neglect and care, all perfectly expressed in Barry Root's tender illustrations. True to the book's earth-friendly spirit, it is printed on paper containing 100 percent recycled post-consumer waste and includes an author's note on recycling plastic bags.
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