Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Popular Poolside Picks for LAF Students

Now that you are 4 weeks into summer and in full relaxation mode, take a look at some more book reviews to keep you busy for the rest of your time away from school.
Ms. Weglarz with a couple of her and her students' favorites!

Picture Book With a Powerful Message: Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell (32 pgs. RL 3.5)  Even when the class bully at her new school makes fun of her, Molly remembers what her grandmother told her and she feels good about herself.

Heartwarming Fiction: Strays Like Us by Cecilia Galante (313 pgs. RL 5.9) Twelve-year-old Winifred is being fostered by the eccentric but kind Margery Dawson while her mother is dealing with addiction problems, and mostly Fred is determined not to form any attachments to anybody--until the condition of Toby, the abused dog next door, captures first her attention and then her heart, and somehow it becomes increasingly difficult to stay detached from the people who are helping her.

Famous Children's book authors such as Jeff Kinney, Cressida Cowell and others talk about their favorite books from childhood.

Valentino loves Wings of Fire for it's action and adventure,

Adventurous Fantasy: Wings of Fire Series by Tui Sutherland The seven dragon tribes have been at war for generations, locked in an endless battle over an ancient, lost treasure. A secret movement called the Talons of Peace is determined to bring an end to the fighting, with the help of a prophecy -- a foretelling that calls for great sacrifice.

Art for Wings of Fire by Valentino

Emotional Historical Fiction: Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson (251 pg. RL 5.0) It's late summer 1793, and the streets of Philadelphia are abuzz with mosquitoes and rumors of fever. Down near the docks, many have taken ill, and the fatalities are mounting. Now they include Polly, the serving girl at the Cook Coffeehouse. But fourteen-year-old Mattie Cook doesn't get a moment to mourn the passing of her childhood playmate. New customers have overrun her family's coffee shop, located far from the mosquito-infested river, and Mattie's concerns of fever are all but overshadowed by dreams of growing her family's small business into a thriving enterprise. But when the fever begins to strike closer to home, Mattie's struggle to build a new life must give way to a new fight—the fight to stay alive.

"Feels like you can't stop reading it because it's such a good book!" -Maddie C.

Fun Mystery: If You're Reading This, It's Too Late by Pseudonymous Bosc (385 pg. RL 5.0) The second book in the Secret series picks up with Cass and Max-Ernest. The due discover the Museum of Magic, unscramble more coded messages, and solve new mysteries in their attempt to thwart the Terces Society's ambitions of discovering immortality.

Art for If You're Reading This, It's Too Late by Allison H.

Magical Adventure: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (377 pgs. 4.9) Percy, expelled from six schools for being unable to control his temper, learns the truth from his mother that his father is the Greek god Poseidon, and is sent to Camp Half Blood where he is befriended by a satyr and the demigod daughter of Athena who join him in a journey to the Underworld to retrieve Zeus's lightning bolt and prevent a catastrophic war.

"It's a mix between Greek Mythology and modern life."-Ella D.

Big Nate "shows how Nate struggles in school but still is able to have fun." -Nathan C.

Tales of a Mischief Maker: Big Nate series by Lincoln Pierce Nate knows he's meant for big things. REALLY big things. But life doesn't always go your way just because you're awesome.  Here comes BIG NATE, accidental mischief maker and definitely NOT the teacher's pet. 

Big Nate artwork by Nathan C.

Mrs. Azzaro and Ulysses agree that Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures is both laugh-out-loud funny and meaningful.

An Unexpected Hero: Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures by Kate DiCamillo 
It begins, as the best superhero stories do, with a tragic accident that has unexpected consequences. The squirrel never saw the vacuum cleaner coming, but self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman, who has read every issue of the comic book Terrible Things Can Happen to You!, is the just the right person to step in and save him. What neither can predict is that Ulysses (the squirrel) has been born anew, with powers of strength, flight, and misspelled poetry—and that Flora will be changed too, as she discovers the possibility of hope and the promise of a capacious heart. 

Thursday, June 20, 2019

2019 Summer Beach Reads!

Looking for something amazing to read this summer? You've come to the right place! Here you will find book recommendations from LAF students and teachers to take with you while you soak up the sun!

This summer Mrs. Nigro will be reading in her backyard, at the Jersey shore, in Maine, Boston, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Finland, Sweden, and England! WOW!

Tear-jerking Realistic Fiction: Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson (128 pg.)   I read this book when I was in 4th was the very first book that made me cry! That's the power of writing! This is not only a story of unexpected friendship between the characters, Jess and Leslie, but also about the power and magic of their imaginations. Will the strength and courage that Leslie has given Jess be enough to help him survive an unimaginable tragedy? This is one of my all-time favorite books, without question! -Mrs. Nigro

Historical Fiction for Animal Lovers: Riding Freedom by Pam Munoz Ryan (138 pgs; RL 4.8) Charlotte Parkhurst is raised in an orphanage for boys, which suits her just fine. She doesn’t like playing with dolls, she can hold her own in a fight, and she loves to work in the stables. Charlotte has a way with horses and wants to spend her life training and riding them on a ranch of her own. The problem is, as a girl in the mid-1800s, Charlotte is expected to live a much different life – one without freedom.

Riding Freedom art by Charlotte C.

Riding Freedom "kept me reading"- Hannah Mortazavi

Olivia A. and Shawn R. think Rump is golden!

Not the Rumpelstiltskin You Know: Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin by Liesl Shurtliff (264 pgs; RL 4.4) In a magic kingdom where your name is your destiny, 12-year-old Rump is the butt of everyone's joke. But when he finds an old spinning wheel, his luck seems to change. Rump discovers he has a gift for spinning straw into gold. His best friend, Red Riding Hood, warns him that magic is dangerous, and she’s right. With each thread he spins, he weaves himself deeper into a curse.

Rump "is magical and funny"-Shawn R.

Rump "is funny and has a good message"-Olivia A.

Chloe W. likes There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom is "funny"!

Humorous Realistic Fiction: There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom by Lois Sachar (195 pgs.) Bradley Chalkers is the oldest kid in the fifth grade. He tells enormous lies. He picks fights with girls. No one likes him-except Carla, the new school counselor. She thinks Bradley is sensitive and generous, and knows that Bradley could change, if only he weren't afraid to try. But when you feel like the most-hated kid in the whole school, believing in yourself can be the hardest thing in the world

Art by Chloe W.
Mrs. Patterson's 2 favorite books!

Feel-Good Fiction: The Boy on the Porch by Sharon Creech (151 pgs. RL 4.4) One day John and Martha, a young couple, find a boy asleep on their porch. The boy is unable to speak and explain who he is, so they choose to care for the boy and embrace his exuberant spirit and talents. 

Powerful Lesson For All: The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes (80 pgs RL 3.0) At the heart of the story is Wanda Petronski, a Polish girl in a Connecticut school who is ridiculed by her classmates for wearing the same faded blue dress every day. Wanda claims she has one hundred dresses at home, but everyone knows she doesn’t and bullies her mercilessly.