A good novel for my 7th graders to read

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Mr.MiddleSchool, Jan 11, 2009.

  1. Mr.MiddleSchool

    Mr.MiddleSchool Comrade

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    Jan 11, 2009

    Hello All!

    New teacher here! I teach 7th grade Language Arts and I absolutely love it so far.

    I was wondering does anyone know of a novel that I can possibly teach during the 2nd semester?

    Granted, I know that traditionally The Outsiders is taught in 6th and 7th grade (awesome book by the way! Never gets old. JMHO) but unfortunately its already been taught to them. Does anyone have any other suggestions. I'd like to stick with more traditional titles rather than go on the "newer" spectrum... The Giver, The Chocolate War, The Rag and Bone Shop, etc.

    Has anyone used a novel that never fails to get their students attention and that they really enjoy?

    thanks!

    -Mr.MiddleSchool
     
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  3. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    It's an oldie, but when I taught 7th I couldn't get through the last chapter without tearing up: Where the Red Fern Grows.

    500th post! Woot! :woot:
     
  4. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    Pushcart Wars?
     
  5. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    A View from Saturday
     
  6. deserttrumpet

    deserttrumpet Comrade

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    Hatchet
     
  7. jforegolf

    jforegolf Rookie

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    I read The Chocolate War the past two years with 7th and 8th graders and it has been a huge hit both times. It is similar in context to The Outsiders so that could lead to some compare and contrast activities. I would definitely recommend it. It just leads so seamlessly into great discusions.
     
  8. catgirl595

    catgirl595 New Member

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    how about "The Veiw From the Cherry Tree?" As a real student I loved that book and I recomend it to everyone.
     
  9. jadej

    jadej Rookie

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    The Indian in the Cupboard.
     
  10. Mr.MiddleSchool

    Mr.MiddleSchool Comrade

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    I've heard some good things about The Chocolate War but have never personally read it.

     
  11. Mr.MiddleSchool

    Mr.MiddleSchool Comrade

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    The thing is, I want a book that can be followed with "cool" during reading and after reading activities. I teach 102 kids, my biggest class being 27 kids. So, I need A. find a set of books and B. make sure the book is interesting. The only books right now that I have in my classroom (I just took over for a teacher who left) is The Outsiders, Where the Red Fern Grows, and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn(which I have no intention in reading).

    So yeah, that's my dilemma.

    -Mr.MiddleSchool
     
  12. peachacid

    peachacid Companion

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    I LOVE THAT BOOK.
     
  13. peachacid

    peachacid Companion

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    Why don't you want to read the Giver? It's an excellent book and can be used with some pretty interesting extension activities...conversations about utopia/dystopia, what an ideal society would look like, etc etc. I have a whole ten lesson unit plan for the Giver if you're interested...though it was done for a grad school assignment, and not for actual kids...

    Huck Finn I think is usually taught in 9th grade. Chocolate War I've only seen read in a 10th grade below-level class. The stuff in that book seems a little too violent for 7th graders, but I just may be old-fashioned.

    The Pushcart Wars would be great, too. If you could get enough copies of that and of the Giver, you could split the kids up and have half read one, half the other...and then have discussions about future societies and what our future holds for us.
     
  14. Writer's Block

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    Tuck Everlasting is great too for 7th graders. You can get into some very interesting conversations about living forever.
     
  15. Mr.MiddleSchool

    Mr.MiddleSchool Comrade

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    yes, I would be interested in seeing that lesson plan unit...if you would be willing to share. Maybe you could send me a private message and we could discuss it.

    -Mr.MiddleSchool


     
  16. SpecialEdTeache

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    In 2005/06 I had my regular LA class listen to The Giver on audio tape. They enjoyed listening with a partner and were remarkably pretty quiet for a rowdy bunch. Some of the kids thought it was a bit morbid and didn't like it. But, others were engaged in the discussion and had interesting things to contribute.

    The Chocolate War I read in Adolescent Lit class last summer and I agree with Mr. MiddleSchool--it's really, imo and the class instructor said also, a 9th Grade up book because there is some pretty scary stuff in there.
     
  17. Artteach42

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    Al Capone does my Shorts is a good one.

    Also, The Perks of being a Wallflower and The Catcher in the Rye.

    both of those may be a little old, i'm not exactly sure, but they are very good and kids relate to them VERY well.

    then there is To Kill a Mockingbird, Fahrenheit 451, and Lord of the Flies.
     
  18. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    I love Jerry Spinelli's books. When I taught 6th grade one of my lit circle groups did Star Girl and enjoyed it. Maniac Magee is a good one too from what I hear although I have never read it. I plan to read it for fun this summer though, I think young adult novels can be the perfect summer read!

    I had another lit circle group that read The Wave which I also thought was good. Holes is good too, but I think it's more of a 5th-6th grade reading level.
     
  19. Mr.MiddleSchool

    Mr.MiddleSchool Comrade

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    I have several books in my room that you all have mentioned The Giver, Freak the Mighty, Hatchet, the Jerry S. books, etc. But the problem is I only have maybe two of those titles at most in my room. Where the Red Fern Grows is the only set that I have. So I suppose I will use that one.

    Does anyone have any fun, interactive activies to go along with this book? Maybe a lesson plan/unit plan online or something on how I can present this classic novel in a fun way? I hope someone understands what I'm trying to say here. *laughs*

    -Mr.MiddleSchool
     
  20. Mrs. K.

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  21. Mr.MiddleSchool

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