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Recommendations for class readers for years 7 and 8 please...

Discussion in 'English' started by swallowtail, Jan 15, 2012.

  1. I've got some money in my dept budget allocated for new class readers and I'd love some ideas for what's working well in other schools. I already have Holes, Private Peaceful, Goodnight Mr Tom, Stone Cold and The Boy in the Striped PJs, so I'd like some that offer different stories and themes to those - and nothing about war! I'd also like to avoid books they might read in primary school. Anything a bit challenging/different/off the beaten track is welcome! Ideas please?
     
  2. I've got some money in my dept budget allocated for new class readers and I'd love some ideas for what's working well in other schools. I already have Holes, Private Peaceful, Goodnight Mr Tom, Stone Cold and The Boy in the Striped PJs, so I'd like some that offer different stories and themes to those - and nothing about war! I'd also like to avoid books they might read in primary school. Anything a bit challenging/different/off the beaten track is welcome! Ideas please?
     
  3. We do Cirque Du Freak with some of our year 7 classes. They love it! There are lots of really creative activities you can do to accompany the reading of this text.
     
  4. marlin

    marlin Star commenter Forum guide

  5. We use 'Holes' with Year 8 and 'Stone Cold' as a Year 09 text - it used to be a GCSE text a couple of years ago. With Year 7 most of our stuff is war related but two texts we use that aren't: 'Artemis Foul' - first one of the series - and Michelle Paver's 'Wolf Brother'. I particularly like the latter.
     
  6. chocolateworshipper

    chocolateworshipper Occasional commenter

    The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd
     
  7. Highly recommend Underground To Canada by Barbara Smucker and Chinese Cinderella by Adeline Yen Mah for year 8. Lots of cross curricula opportunities as one is historical fiction on escaping slavery and the other is an autobiographical novel dealing with lots of social issues set in pre war and invaded China.
    Buddy by Nigel Hinton still goes down well with year 9 and The incident of the dog in the night time is good too. Benjamin Zephaniah is not the most literary writer but his plots and characters are very good, though because of the subject matter, we wait till year 9 to read Face. Refugee Boy suits year 8.
    War Horse is going cheap from Scholastic books at the moment as well.
    .
     
  8. We recently bought Neil Gailman's The Graveyard Book - using mainly with top year 8 or potentially year 9 as reasonably long... but a fantastic story (each chapter is almost a discrete story) and they LOVE it!
     
  9. maltesefalcon

    maltesefalcon New commenter

    During my PGCE year I was placed with one Year 7 class who were reading Coraline by Neil Gaiman which they really enjoyed and it's also an animated film now too.
     
  10. mrspstevens

    mrspstevens New commenter

    I read The Graveyard Book with Year 9 last year and they really lost their patience with it. I think it has a bit too much going on and it takes too long for the main story to develop for it to be a good class reader.

    Each to their own though.
     
  11. fineliner

    fineliner Occasional commenter

    I can't recommend A Monster Calls highly enough.
     
  12. englishtt06

    englishtt06 Occasional commenter

    A Monster Calls is fantastic with Y7. Hunger Games (alongside Lord of the Flies, Divergent, Maggot Moon, Z if for Zaccariah, 1984 etc.) great for Y9. I have read and enjoyed Graveyard Book (as have several of my students) but I've never tried to teach it. The best list of edgy, entertaining and downright frightening young adult books can be found in Carnegie Readers (link below). It's a great project to do in school every year anyway, and an excuse (if one be needed) to order in new texts and get students involved, and every year we find a new class reader in their collection. Note: both Graveyard Book, a Monster Calls and Maggot Moon are all previous nominees/winners.
    http://www.carnegiegreenaway.org.uk/what-is-shadowing.php
    As an additional note, Buddy by NIgel Hinton: avoid, avoid, avoid. I hated it in 1989 when I read it as a pupil in class. I still have spasms of horror now just at the mention of it. As a teacher, in one of my previous schools we threw the moldering copies in the skip but the b**ggers made it back into the stockroom. Burn 'em, that's what I say ;)
     
    Mazod likes this.
  13. englishtt06

    englishtt06 Occasional commenter

    I should add to my post above that the Carnegie list of past nominees and winners also includes Junk, Northern Lights, Millions, Goodnight Mr Tom, Skellig and familiar names such as Westall and Margaret Mahy (a personal favourite of mine as a child!). I don't work for Carnegie...honest!

    One way to make the project work financially in school is to order a few copies of each text and circulate amongst your group - so only committed staff and students will work in this case as the books must be swapped around every week or so.

    Personally, regardless of conducting the project in schoo, I like reading them as they help hone what is new in YA publishing into a handy, literary list every year.
     
  14. ashlaura

    ashlaura Occasional commenter

  15. storywolf

    storywolf New commenter

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