Tag Archives: reluctant readers

It’s the most wonderful time of the year: Shark Week!

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10 Fascinating Facts About Sharks by Rachel A. Koestler-Grack
Did you know that there are more than 500 species of shark? Or that they range in size from smaller than a ruler to longer than a bus? Those are just some of the fascinating tidbits kids will discover in 10 Fascinating Facts About Sharks.

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Amazing Sharks by Steve Parker
Provides an overview of sharks, describing key characteristics of such species as the great white shark, blue shark, sand tiger shark, and whale shark.

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Bow Wow by Spencer Quinn
Bowser the mutt lives with eleven-year-old Birdie Gaux and her grandmother in the normally quiet Louisiana bayou town of St. Roch, but news that a Bull shark has somehow made its way into the swamp has everyone excited, and the cash bounty for landing the shark has lured some very shady characters into town–one hunter in particular is prepared to go to any lengths to collect the money.

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Deadliest Sharks by Melissa Abramovitz
Profiles some of the world’s deadliest sharks, including the spotted wobbegong, shortfin mako, and bull shark.

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If Sharks Disappeared by Lily Williams
A nonfiction picture book tracing the repercussions of what would happen if sharks disappeared from our planet.

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Please Be Nice to Sharks: Fascinating Facts about the Ocean’s Most Misunderstood Creatures by Matt Weiss; photos by Matt Weiss & Daniel Botelho
A humorous book that humanizes the incredible, much-maligned shark through breathtaking underwater photography and incredible facts dispels many of the myths that have led to various shark species being hunted to extinction.

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Sharkpedia by Nancy Ellwood and Margaret Parrish
Through hundreds of photographs, diagrams, maps, and illustrations, readers will learn where sharks lurk, what they eat, and why they do what they do, as well as hear from scientists and shark-attack survivors.

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Sharks by Sarah Fowler
Get up close and personal with all kinds of sharks—from bullhead to cow to carpet sharks—and learn how to identify different types, which is strongest, and so much more with this exciting book full of amazing images, fun quizzes, and incredible information.

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Sharks and Other Sea Creatures senior editor Carrie Lowe; photographer Ruth Jenkinson
Packed with fun activities, crafts, reading games, and amazing facts, kids can take a dive under the waves and meet all the colorful creatures beneath–from clown fish to starfish to jellyfish–in this educational project book.

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Slickety Quick: Poems About Sharks by Skila Brown; illustrated by Bob Kolar
From the enormous whale shark to the legendary great white to the enigmatic goblin shark to the small cookie-cutter shark, Slickety Quick is a delightful frenzy of shark mayhem. … Sneaky shark facts ripple through each spread to further inform the brave and curious young reader intrigued by the power–and danger–of these amazing creatures.

Help, I need something to read!

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The summer reading program is just about to start! What if you can’t figure out what you want to read? Don’t worry, we have some tools for you to use!

When you’re in the library, you’ll see some brochures with suggestions for different grade levels. We also have a list of staff favorites.

Already read all of those? The Association for Library Service to Children creates lists of recommended books all the time. This includes new lists of suggested summer reading every year.

Print their lists for

Birth-Preschool: 170426_ALSC_SummerReading17_Birth-PreK

Kindergarten-2nd grade: 170426_ALSC_SummerReading17_K-2

3rd through 5th grade: 170426_ALSC_SummerReading17_3-5

6th through 8th grade: 170426_ALSC_SummerReading17_6-8

Or search our catalog:

Birth-Preschool

Kindergarten-2nd grade

3rd through 5th grade

6th through 8th grade

Since these lists were created by an outside group, there might be some books on the list that are not in our collection. If you place a hold, the library that owns the book will send it to Fountaindale and you can pick it up here. There is no charge for this service– just be sure to pick the book up within 5 days after we let you know it has arrived. You can also use the fill-in form on our website to ask us to purchase an item.

If that’s still not enough books, you can also look at the nominees for the Illinois Readers’ Choice Awards.

Bluestem in OPACIf you type in “Bluestem” or “Monarch” or “Caudill” as a keyword search in our online catalog, at the top of the results you will get a “You might also like” box. When you click on the first sentence, the catalog will do a search for the 2018 nominees of the corresponding award. All of the different formats that we own are included. You can then sort by title or author to look at the results.
Don’t forget that your librarians are also a great resource for finding books you want to read! Just stop by and ask. We’ll talk to you about what you like and what you’re in the mood to read and help you come up with suggestions. The library has something for everybody, even kids (and parents) who tell you they don’t like reading.

What’s new in children’s books? Multiplatform storytelling!

One of the new trends in children’s chapter books goes by names like transmedia or multi-platform series.  These terms usually refer to books that have a connection to an online game (although I would also includePatrick Carman’s Skeleton Creek in this category, a series that featured related online videos and slightly predated the books with online games).

The Maze of Bones
An early example, which is still going strong, is The 39 Clues.  The books feature puzzles to solve and plenty of adventure, as well as some educational bits about different times and places in history.  Fountaindale owns this series in Spanish as well as in English.  The stories in this series have been written by a number of popular authors, ranging from Rick Riordan (known for the Percy Jackson series) to Jude Watson (known for Star Wars chapter books) to Linda Sue Park (known for award-winning historical fiction).

Wild Born
Another ongoing series, Spirit Animals, continues this method of using lots of popular authors.  In this case, the stories are more of a fantasy quest.  I had a chance to hear one of the authors (I think it was Maggie Stiefvater) talk about a reason publishers are trying multiplatform books.  She said her brother was a gamer who didn’t spend a lot of time reading.  She asked what would get him to read more, and he said if he knew a bit about a character and world (and didn’t have to spend time getting into the story and maybe deciding he wasn’t interested) he would be more willing to try something.  A series like this can be a good choice for a reluctant reader, because they can “try out” the story through the game.

Book of the Dead
TombQuest
by Michael Northrup is a brand new series inspired by ancient Egypt featuring plenty of magic and danger.  The Copernicus Legacy by Tony Abbott is also pretty new, featuring an around-the-world quest.  Infinity Ring, a series that appears to have recently concluded, features time travel.  Infinity Ring offers an app that can be used on a variety of devices, something I didn’t see mentioned for the other books’ games.

If you’ve been clicking on the links, you will have noticed that most of these series come from Scholastic.  The publisher recently created a website to cover several of the series at once.  You can take a quiz to see which series you would probably enjoy, or if you’re already a big fan you can interact in a moderated forum with other fans or look at fan fiction and author videos.