This is a page to blether (chat) with the Teachers’ Reading Challenge community. We invite you to share reading experiences and great reads to inspire others.
Here you can leave messages, reply and like!
Title: The Goldfish Boy
Author: Lisa Thompson
Recommended for: Y5/6+
Good for discussing: OCD and anxiety
“Heartbreaking and heartwarming in equal measure. Makes you realise what a debilitating condition OCD is. Loved the main character and was with him all the way. A very useful book to recommend to children with anxiety issues in Years 5, 6 and upwards. And a real page turner. I was just dying to know who took the boy!”
This sounds great. I loved All The Things That Could Go Wrong by Stewart Foster so think I will love this, too
Title: The Boy at the Back of the Class
Author: Onjali Q. Rauf
Recommended for: KS2
Good for discussing: the refugee crisis
“I would recommend this book to any KS2 class to gain an understanding of the refugee crisis and the ”long-word">responsibilities we have as global citizens. It has great PSHE themes of friendship, loss and family."
Title: The Closest Things to Flying
Author: Gill Lewis
Recommended for: Y5/6
Good for discussing: racism, feminism, domestic violence
“Lovely story which cleverly charts the lives of two girls a hundred years apart. The plot covers some challenging issues such as racism, feminism and domestic violence but in an age appropriate and accessible way. Would recommend to children in Y5 and Y6.”
Title: The Somerset Tsunami
Author: Emma Carroll
Recommended for: 9-12 year olds
Top tip: read alongside lessons on the King James I witch hunts
“A gripping fictional tale based on true life events – the flooding of Somerset and the King James I witch hunts of the early 17th century. Fortune – the protagonist – is bold, brave and adventurous – everything a reader wants in their heroine. Having recently read The Mercies, by Kiran Millwood Hargrove, I was struck by the similarities of the events – a village of women, extreme weather events, witch hunts. A brilliant read – perfect for 9-12 year olds.”
I haven’t read The Mercies but I love Kiran Millwood Hargrave’s writing and I loved The Somerset Tsunami – I think it needs adding to be mound of books to read!
We invite you to add a book, then leave a rating and a review (you will be instructed to do this once your completed book has been added). This book will then be logged against your reading goal. You will be able to access your reviews through your personal profile at any time. By adding books and reaching your goal, your completers badge and certificate will be activated! You can also copy your review into your downloadable diary if you wish.
If you decide to log a book and leave a review you can also copy your review into the blether/message board. This way you can read each other’s reviews and comment, starting interesting discussions with the Teachers’ Reading Challenge community.
The audience for your review is either:
A) other teachers
B) children (for the relevant age group) so you can share it in school
Author: Kirsty Applebaum
Recommended for: Year 5+
Good for discussing: bullying and friendship
“An easy read for y5+ that introduces some really interesting philosophical and ethical ideas. A great introduction to the sci-fi realism genre 👍 Also deals with bullying and the importance of friendship and being brave enough to say sorry.”
Title: Runaway Robot
Author: Frank Cottrell Boyce
Recommended for: Year 4+
“An enjoyable read, I thought the slow reveal of what had happened to the Alfie (main character) was well crafted. Eric the Robot was a character a lot of children will like and Shatter’s way of speaking would be a good focus point of discussion on author’s intended meaning and ”long-word">characterisation. I would recommend to Year 4+ independent readers."
Title: Jemima Small versus the Universe
Author: Tamsin Winter
Good for discussing: bullying, empathy, representation, female empowerment
“This is such a lovely story of female empowerment. Any girl who was or is being bullied at school should find inspiration from this emotional story of a child on the cusp of young adulthood. The main character, Jemima, does have a valuable close friendship, a loving aunt, a group of people going through the same worries and an inspiring mentor. Still it is hard for her to shrug off the comments and stares from classmates and strangers. I will definitely be recommending this to students at school. Reading books like this helps develop empathy and this is a great example of providing characters that help children to see themselves in literature. It is also very funny in parts.”
Title: Magical Children: The Boy Who Could Fly
Author: Sally Gardner
Recommended for: LKS2
Top tip: link it with the story of Icarus if studying Greek mythology!
“I would recommend this for LKS2. When Thomas meets the fat fairy and wishes to be able to fly, he finds his escape from his family and a new friend in Mr Vinnie. There’s an ending that I wasn’t expecting which was nice. Could link with the story of Icarus.”