Young Adult Novels to Support History Curriculum

Discussion in 'General Education' started by glen, Mar 6, 2010.

  1. glen

    glen Companion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Messages:
    200
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    We're restructuring next year due to our budget. The restructuring is going to cut into the time spent in some subjects, history in particular. We're looking to use novels to support and enhance the topics covered in our American History classes. Does anyone have suggestions of quallity novels for 7th and 8th graders that we should consider? The reading levels can range from 6th grade to 10th. The upcoming 7th grade class is very young, so if you know the material may be difficult for young 12 year-olds, noting that would be helpful.

    Pieces of literature I'm going to look into so far include:

    My Brother Sam is Dead
    The Crucible
    Number the Stars (easy read for this age group, but a good connection to history)
    Assorted bigoraphies

    Thanks in advance for all suggestions!
     
  2.  
  3. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

    Joined:
    May 24, 2008
    Messages:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    15

    Mar 6, 2010

    I take my juniors through The Crucible every year and it is a hard sell ... the language is just antiquated enough that I lose some of them. I can bring them back with "bully girls" type discussions but it is hard.

    I don't know any titles, but I know there are several YA books about The Holocaust.
     
  4. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    3,506
    Likes Received:
    12

    Mar 6, 2010

    Ku, my kids LOVE the Crucible! It's the one piece that they can really get into. Isn't it strange how different books reach different people? Glen, I wouldn't suggest using it with middle school students, though. I think the language would be way to intimidating for them, and there is almost NOTHING historically accurate about it.
     
  5. jday129

    jday129 Comrade

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    Messages:
    435
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    I used to teach at a classical school that tied a lot of their reading with history.
    Here's a few titles
    The Witch of Blackbird Pond
    Sign of the Beaver
    Amos Fortune
    Johnny Tremain
    for more go to www.ncaclassical.org then look under curriculum and literature lists for grades 6-8.
     
  6. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

    Joined:
    May 24, 2008
    Messages:
    3,513
    Likes Received:
    15

    Mar 6, 2010

    We need to collaborate ... I'd love to see what you do with The Crucible, so many of my kids give up on it. Would you consider doing a project across our classes?
     
  7. Mrs. R.

    Mrs. R. Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2006
    Messages:
    1,629
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    If you are looking for historical fiction novels, you can't go wrong with the novels written by Ann Rinaldi. She writes about many different eras in US History and her novels are meticulously researched. You can check them out here: http://www.annrinaldi.net/
    Also, Laurie Halse Anderson writes historical fiction. Chains and Fever 1793 are great books.
     
  8. glen

    glen Companion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Messages:
    200
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    Thanks for the input. I haven't read it since high school myself and wasn't sure if it could work with middle school. I'll cross that one off my list of possibilities.

    The text we use focuses a lot on the roles of minorities in American History, so I think that may be a good angle to use when selecting literature. I should be able to find many good titles that will highlight the roles of women, African Americans, immigrant groups, etc and the struggles they faced.
     
  9. glen

    glen Companion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Messages:
    200
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    Thank you! I will definitely check out the titles and website!
     
  10. glen

    glen Companion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Messages:
    200
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    Thanks, Mrs. R, for the lead. I'lll follow up on those, too.
     
  11. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2002
    Messages:
    18,938
    Likes Received:
    682

    Mar 6, 2010

  12. noreenk

    noreenk Cohort

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Messages:
    631
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    For a WWII unit, Farewell to Manzanar and The Moon Bridge would be great for addressing Japanese internment (they're lower reading levels though). My students always love My Brother Sam is Dead... a few of my boys have read other books by Collier & Collier, I believe they have another novel set around the Revolutionary War and a novel set during the Civil War. I've have a set of Red Badge of Courage graphic novels I got from Scholastic... they're way too hard for my fifth graders, but I'd imagine middle schoolers would be able to handle them.
     
  13. noreenk

    noreenk Cohort

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Messages:
    631
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    Just remembered another historical fiction book that I discovered this year - Blood on the River: James Town 1607. My high students really liked it!
     
  14. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Messages:
    2,233
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 6, 2010

    Soldeir's Heart by Gary Paulsen (Civil War) outstanding
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 174 (members: 0, guests: 154, robots: 20)
test