A book illustration

Recommendations

A book illustration
Here are a few books Elaine loves and wants to share with you --and a science activity for each
Ida B book cover
Katherine Hannigan

Ida B

About the Book: Ida B. Applewood believes there is never enough time for fun. That’s why she’s so happy to be homeschooled and to spend every free second outside with the trees and the brook. Then some not-so-great things happen in her world. Ida B has to go back to that Place of Slow but Sure […]

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Science Connection: Making Recycled Paper

Goblin Secrets book cover
William Alexander

Goblin Secrets

About the Book: In the town of Zombay, there is a witch named Graba who has clockwork chicken legs and moves her house around—much like the fairy tale figure of Baba Yaga. Graba takes in stray children, and Rownie is the youngest boy in her household. Rownie’s only real relative is his older brother Rowan, who […]

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Science Connection: Homemade Gears

The Witches by Roald Dahl book cover
Roald Dahl

The Witches

About the Book: This Roald Dahl classic tells the scary, funny and imaginative tale of a seven-year-old boy who has a run-in with some real-life witches! “In fairy tales witches always wear silly black hats and black cloaks and they ride on broomsticks. But this is not a fairy tale. This is about REAL WITCHES. REAL […]

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My Very UNFairy Tale Lice book cover
Anna Staniszewski

My Very UnFairy Tale Life

About the Book: You know all those stories that claim fairies cry sparkle tears and elves travel by rainbow? They’re lies. All lies. I’ve spent my life as an official adventurer. I travel across enchanted kingdoms saving magical creatures and fighting horrible beasts that most of you think are only myths and legends. I’ve never had […]

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Okay for Now book cover
Gary D. Schmidt

Okay for Now

About the Book: As a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him. So begins a coming-of-age masterwork full of equal parts comedy and tragedy from Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt. As Doug struggles to be […]

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Art Activity: Drawing Like Audubon: Learning to See by Kate Birch

Masterpiece book cover
Elise Broach

Masterpiece

About the Book: Marvin lives with his family under the kitchen sink in the Pompadays’ apartment. He is very much a beetle. James Pompaday lives with his family in New York City. He is very much an eleven-year-old boy. After James gets a pen-and-ink set for his birthday, Marvin surprises him by creating an elaborate miniature […]

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Art Activity: Drawing Like Dürer by Rosalyn Eves

Framed book cover
Frank Cottrell Boyce

Framed

About the Book: A few things to know about Dylan: He is the only boy in his entire town—so forget about playing soccer. His best friends are two pet chickens. His family owns the world’s only gas station/coffee house—their pies are to die for, but profits are in the hole. Criminal instincts run in his family—his […]

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Art Activity: Yarn-Wrapped Frames by Erin Shakespear

Middleworld book cover
J&P Voelkel

Middleworld

About the Book: An epic adventure that brings together ancient history and modern adolescent angst – as it pits a pampered, pizza-eating, 21st century Boston teenager against the Death Lords of the Maya Underworld. In Book One: “Middleworld,” 14-year-old Max Murphy is trying to survive in the perilous rainforest. But poisonous snakes and man-eating jaguars are […]

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Science Connection: Make a Sundial by Laura Cotts

The Best Christmas Pagent Ever book cover
Barbara Robinson

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

About the Book: Called one of America’s favorite Christmas stories, and now a classic television movie, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” has been a favorite of young readers the world over since 1972. Funny, memorable, and outrageous, it is the story of a family of incorrigible children who discover the Christmas story for the first time […]

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Science Connection: Tasty Chemical Reactions

Cosmic book cover
Frank Cottrell Boyce

Cosmic

About the Book: Liam is too big for his boots. And his football strip. And his school blazer. But being super-sized height-wise has its advantages: he’s the only eleven-year-old to ever ride the G-force defying Cosmic rollercoaster – or be offered the chance to drive a Porsche. Long-legged Liam makes a giant leap for boy-kind by […]

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Science Connection: Balloon Rocket Launch