Appropriate Books

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by FarFromHome, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. FarFromHome

    FarFromHome Connoisseur

    Jul 9, 2007
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    Aug 16, 2007

    I just posted this in the 3rd grade forum, but there are more people over here!

    I just labeled and organized all my books today. I'm kind of worried that some of the chapter books might be too mature for third graders. I have books ranging from about 2nd-5th grade (with 1 or 2 6th grade books).

    I'm wondering what I should do to make sure they're appropriate. I would rather not have a parent come up and complain about what their child is reading if I can avoid it. Should I wait to put these books out for the kids to read until I have time to read them for myself??

    I don't have all the books with me right now, but some include:
    The Cage by Sender, Someone to Love by Mazer, Sister of the Quints by Pevsner, and The Cat Ate My Gymsuit by Danziger.

    I randomly opened up The Cat Ate My Gymsuit (which is 3rd grade reading level) and saw a sentence saying something about an X-rated movie. I haven't read it-but that doesn't sound right for me-a 3rd grader might come up to me asking what an X-rated movie is!

    Any suggestions??
  3. Ms.T

    Ms.T Comrade

    Aug 4, 2006
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    Aug 16, 2007

    I feel your pain, FarFromHome. I teach 2nd and I wonder the same thing, but with an added worry: My school is VERY conservative. It is a public charter school with a religious slant, which is annoying to me. Things I would consider 'normal' reading for my students would be frowned upon here. For example, question and answer books (you know the science type that asks random questions) that have any pix of puberty, reproduction. I'm talking about paragraph-long blurbs; it's not like I'm putting sex books out for my 2nd graders! Also, "Heather has 2 mommies"; I think it is extremely important to expose kids to all types of families, but I'd probably get fired if I put that out at my school. Um, hello? There are gay families all over the place! It's not inappropriate to know about your world.

    Sorry, this doesn't answer your question. But we read lots of books when we were in 2nd and 3rd grade and we turned out okay, right? Maybe you should put out books you got on a recommendation or from a book list, just to be safe. The thing is, once kids start getting to those advanced reading levels, there are often references to sex or other mature things.
  4. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

    Aug 26, 2006
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    Aug 16, 2007

    I wonder about that too. I have not heard of any of those books except the Paula Danziger book. She generally writes for older kids and her characters are teenages.

    Rule of thumb: The older the kids in the book, the more mature the content. If the people in the book are 14, the books are meant for 12 year olds, regardless of the reading level. Generally 2 years older is a good range. So find out how old the characters are. I learned this from a friend of mine who works in publishing.

    For third graders, no matter how good of readers they are, I don't tend to have books with main characters over 11 or so. There are tons of exceptions, but this is a good place to start.

    I don't have any romances in my classroom- mostly because even if they can read the level, 3rd graders will not like the story.

    I made a list of books for gifted kids... I will post it somewhere else, as it is really long. I have not read ALL the books, but they are also from recommendations others who said these were good books for kids who are young, but have a high reading level. I hand this out to the parents of those kids.

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