Here’s another thing about my first Book Challenge

Tomorrow is the first day of school! If you are a teacher (like me!) you have a lot of work to do in the coming months. One of those things you might have to do is find fun, appropriate books to read out loud to your classroom of angels. If that is you, I might be able to help. You see, I read the 100 Best Children’s Chapter Books of All Time recently (which is probably not new information to you) and I couldn’t help but notice that some of those books would be great to read out loud! Some of those books I have read out loud to students and some where read to me when I was a student. So, teachers, if you’re looking for a read aloud of chapter-book length, look no further! 

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THE 20 BEST CHILDREN’S CHAPTER BOOKS TO READ ALOUD

Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl (and all other Dahl books)
Charlotte’s Web by EB White
Frindle by Andrew Clements
Holes by Louis Sacher
Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes
Judy Moody by Megan McDonald
Love That Dog by Sharon Creech
My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
Peter Pan by JM Barrie
Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren
Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sacher
The Giver by Lois Lowry
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall
The Phanton Tollbooth by Norton Juster
The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo
Where the Mountains Meet the Moon by Grace Lin

While we’re here, let’s talk about how easily I get sucked into fictional realities. I have a few friends who are intelligent and intuitive and when we watch movies or discuss books they say to me things like, “I totally saw that coming,” or, “I knew that was going to happen.” 99% of the time I say back to them, “I had no idea!” I get so focused on the here and now of the story that I can’t begin to imagine what’s coming next. This may make me simple-minded or obtuse but I think the thrill of being thrown for a loop by an author is worth it. Some books surprised me with a twist ending. “But I thought that guy was his father!” Some books surprised with how weird/awful they were. “That’s not at all what I was expecting.” Some books surprised me with a death, which is the worst way to be surprised. Some surprised me with how awesome they were, how everything in the story came together, or how someone was really a bad guy all along. If you’re looking for a thrill, try these guys on for size.

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7 MOST SURPRISING CHILDREN’S CHAPTER BOOKS OF ALL TIME

Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
Mary Poppins by PL Travers
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O’Brien
Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardiner
The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

So many movies are based on books. So many books are made into movies. It’s not always a good thing. The following are book to movie adaptations that I feel went really well. In some cases (and in my opinion), the movie improved the story! To be fair, there are a lot of books on the list that were made into movies that I did not see. Obviously I cannot comment on those movies. 

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12 BEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME BASED ON CHILDREN’S CHAPTER BOOKS

Alice in Wonderland
Charlotte’s Web
Harriet the Spy
Holes
James and the Giant Peach
Mary Poppins
Matilda
Stuart Little
The Borrowers
The Golden Compass
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
Tuck Everlasting

Stay tuned! I’ve got two lists left. Then we can go back to talking about other things like what TV shows I’m watching and what my students say when they find out I’m teaching them for the third year in a row. 

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