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McKenna's Book Blog

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The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - L. Frank Baum

This a classic book with a great story! The Lexile level is 730L. would use this in a 1st grade classroom in mathematics. I would make a Yellow Brick Road of paper for the classroom floor (or go outside and use yellow street chalk). I would ask the students, "How many bricks would it take to make our yellow brick road cross the hall? run across the playground? down the street? What about if the individual bricks were smaller or larger?"

I would also use this in reading with compare and contrast. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz has been called the first American fairy tale. I would have students use a Venn Diagram to compare and contrast with other fairy tales they are familiar with (Grimm, Perrault, etc.).

Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast (Disney) - Teddy Slater, Ron Dias, Ric Gonzalez

Such a great fairy tale! This story teaches about inner beauty and how it is more important than what someone looks likes.The Lexile level is 740L. I would use this book in a 2nd grade classroom. We would read the story as a class and check for comprehension by handing out a worksheet that asks for definition of vocabulary words, hidden messages, list of characters, and the conflict in the story. 

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day - Ray Cruz, Judith Viorst

This book is great for perspective teaching. The Lexile level is AD970L. I would read this aloud in a 3rd grade classroom (it can be used in any grade level) and use Alexander's story to show that we all have bad days. How we react to those bad days is the most important lesson. I would then have children write at least 5 positive and happy things they can partake in after a bad day.

Encyclopedia Brown

Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective - Donald J. Sobol

This series of books is great for students who are into mysteries and suspense, because each books includes a mystery that is intended to be solved by the reader. The Lexile level is 620L. I would use this in a in a 3rd grade classroom and let each student choose which mystery of Encyclopedia Brown's they would like to read. I would then hand out a graphic organizer that each child will use to complete the chart for which mystery they are reading. Before finishing the book, they must try to come up with their own solutions, and THEN check themselves by looking at Encyclopedia Brown's solution in the back of the book. They are to list the protagonist, the antagonist, the crime or mystery that has been reported, and clues that will help them solve it.