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review 2018-09-10 03:14
Bud, Not Buddy
Bud, Not Buddy - Christopher Paul Curtis

Bud is a determined to find his father despite what is thrown his way. He battles foster parents and siblings, his ability to keep up a lie, as well as hunger and homelessness during the Great Depression. Bud’s mother died when he was six leaving him an orphan because his father was not apart of his life. When Bud runs away from a foster home after being locked in a shed with vampires, he sets his sights on locating his long lost father. Bud’s journey to find his father leads him to an outcome he never expected. Bud uses a map to find various routes during his journey, an activity for students to do is use a map to help Bud find his way from city to city. The students could calculate how long bud would need to travel by foot and by car. An extension to this activity is to have research the cities and find information about those cities during the Great Depression and record them in a graphic organizer. The DRA reading level is 40-50.

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review 2018-09-08 03:49
Math Curse
Math Curse - Jon Scieszka,Lane Smith

The book is about a young person that is told in her math class that math is used in everyday life. The student then goes home and wakes up the next day with all kinds of math problems in her head. The story continues throughout her day, explaining how math works in her life each day. Math Curse is a great book to read in a math class at the first of the year. Most students think that math is not needed beyond the classroom and they do not realize they use math already in their everyday lives. 

Before reading this book, have students take a poll on who thinks that math is important outside the classroom. The students could even have a short debate if there are others that disagree with the majority. After reading the book, have the students come up with different ways they personally use math in their everyday lives. 


Grade 2-5

Book Level:

Lexile 560L

Accelerated Reader 3.7 

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review 2018-09-08 03:36
Give Me Half!
Give Me Half! - Stuart J. Murphy,G. Brian Karas

In this book, a brother and sister are arguing over different items in their house. The story starts out with a pizza and the mother steps in to let them know that they need to share. Sharing the pizza continues on with also sharing items such as, juice, cupcakes, cookies, and even CLEANING! 

Give Me Half! introduces fractions in a fun and interesting way. It could be read to the class as a whole group before a math lesson on fractions. The teacher could have pizza cutouts in different sizes for the students to manipulate. The students could do some critical thinking and come up with other ideas of items that could be shared in the home.


Grade 2-3

Book Level:

Lexile AD520L

Accelerated Reader 2.2

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review 2018-09-07 23:06
Ten Apples Up on Top!
Ten Apples Up On Top! - Theo LeSieg,Roy McKie

Ten Apples Up on Top! by Dr. Seuss is a picture book about animals seeing how many apples they can stack on their heads.  This book will help beginning readers read simple rhyming sentences.  Ten Apples Up on Top! also gives teachers a perfect opportunity to have students practice counting to ten and doing math.  An activity that can be done with this book is to have students count by ones to ten using red counters.  Another activity is to have students identify the rhyming words within the book and see if the students could think of anymore words that rhyme with the words in the book.  The Lexile Leveling system rates this book as 200L (1st grade).  

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review 2018-07-16 21:50
Do Not Open This Math Book
Do Not Open This Math Book - Danica McKellar
I really enjoyed this beginning math/subtraction book. Although geared towards elementary children, I think this book has potential for anyone struggling with the basics of addition and subtraction. Working with students from kindergarten through 6th grade and some struggling adult learners, I think this book is a gem.
What makes this book fantastic in my eyes, is the way the concepts are presented. There are great visuals displaying the information and fantastic ideas to help bring the concepts to life. Danica’s language that she uses to get her point across in this book is fabulous. I found this book entertaining and educational, and although some concepts she builds upon immediately, sometimes she leaves a concept and later comes back to it adding to it.
From adding basic numbers together to subtracting two-digit number, Danica shows how to do that visually and by reading this text, it seems as if she’s right there beside you. There’s a cute, little mouse as Danica sidekick in the book, who is reluctant to learn but with Danica’s help, he starts to learn and is successful.
There is a section on place value, fact families, mental math, regrouping, and then subtracting with borrowing. Like I mentioned before, she starts out basic and moves into more complex material but it’s a gradual shift. The books language is positive and in reading the book, it’s as if you had your own teacher right there with you explaining the concepts. I think using this book with a child would be very beneficial and for children who can read, the ability for them to work through this book on their own would be valuable and an accomplishment. There are games, exercises and lots of examples inside this book.
Thank you, Danica, for creating this book, what a terrific book teaching these concepts. I highly recommend checking out this book.
Excerpt: (how readable and positive the book’s language is) “Just so you know, the whole point in moving the buns to “fill in a tin” is so we can turn these problems into the easy ones we saw on the chart on page 26, like 10 + 5 = 15 and 10 + 6 + 16. By filling the tins wherever we can, we’ll be making the problems easy, like magic.”


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