by Thomas Kingsley Troupe
This is a children's Horror story, targeted at age 8 - 12. I'd say it's appropriate for that level, yet the writing is very good! It's part of a series of real life ghost stories, set in places where ghost sightings have actually been reported.
Jayla and Dion have to accompany their father, a landscaper, for a job in Colorado. It turns out that the hotel they stay in has a reputation for being haunted. Jayla is in seventh grade, her brother is a little younger.
As it turns out, the room they stay in has a resident ghost. When the children experience a sighting of the ghost, they set out to investigate.
I'm no expert on children's literature, but I think this was extremely good for the age group. The writing doesn't 'talk down' to the children's level so I was able to appreciate Jayla and Dion's adventure and concerns about getting into trouble for various things.
While the fear factor would be considered tame for the adult Horror reader, I think it pushed the scary parameters just enough to keep a child interested while not giving them nightmares, unless they're overly sensitive. It's still a ghost story and the dark can be frightening!
This would be an excellent choice for the sort of kid who enjoys Goosebumps or children's adventure stories.
The plot of Stellaluna consists of a baby bat being knocked away from her mother by an attacking owl where she lands in a nest occupied by birds. She has to try and act like a bird as not to confuse her adoptive siblings. One day she gets separated by her bird family and she is discovered by another bat. This leads to her being reunited with her mother! This is a great book to read to students to celebrate differences and similarities in us all. An extension activity could be for students to create a Venn diagram and describe the ways in which Stellaluna and the birds were alike and the ways in which they were different.
Lexile level: 550L
Goodnight Moon is a classic story about a little rabbit saying goodnight to all of his belongings. The book has wonderful illustrations as well as rhyming. This story is a great book to include when teaching about rhyming words. It is ideal for young readers. As an extension activity, students could have visual cards and match each one to the card that rhymes with it.
Lexile level: 360L
Duck! Rabbit! is a fun book for young readers that uses visual illusions to debate whether the images are a duck or a rabbit. Students have so much fun having conversations about which image they see! An extension activity could be to create a T chart with rabbit on one side and duck on the other side and have students list the reasons why the author sees what he does.
Guided Reading level: J