Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Text to Accompany " A Hundred Dresses" by Eleanor Estes

October 23, 2013

This afternoon, I was reading The Girl with 500 Middle Names by Margaret Haddix with several young girls in 5th grade. This book would make an excellent companion to A Hundred Dresses or Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli.

Many students, particularly girls, are nervous about the transition from elementary to middle school. In our American culture, the cliches of who is in and who is out begin to appear rapidly in 4th and 5th grade. It can be very surprising and hurtful when friends change their minds about friendship or decide who they will be friends with based on what a friend wears, has or does.

This well-crafted chapter book written at a Guided Reading Level N or O addresses the concepts of being the new student in a school, having a parent who is on disability, and a mother working diligently to become an entrepreneur.

It is easy to have Text to Self Connections with your students while reading this one. Today, I shared how in 5th grade I moved from Alabama to Texas. When I arrived in Texas to enter 6th grade, I was taller than most of the boys. In addition, I had bright red hair and often the boys would tease me by telling me, "My hair was on fire !". Finally, the most fashionable jeans were Gloria Vanderbilt which I did not own. By sharing a bit of myself, my hope is that students can realize that even though transitions to middle school can be tricky.... they will make it and find their own place !

What are some of your favorite books to share with your students ?

It's no mystery...we have a lot of fun in store for you...