New Books for 5th Graders

Small as an Elephant by Jennifer Richard Jacobson

Reading Level: Grades 3 - 6

Jack and his mother go camping in Maine over Labor Day weekend, but when Jack wakes up on their first morning, his mother is gone, along with her tent and the car. Jack's mother has done this before, so he's worried... but knows she'll come back eventually. But the end of the weekend looms closer, and Jack's food money has long since run out.  

Jack knows that if he tells anyone his mother has disappeared again, he'll be taken away from her, so he starts heading home, alone.  

Small as an Elephant is a wonderful urban survival story about a boy who loves nothing more than his mother, and elephants.

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More books by Jennifer Richard Jacobson

 

A few similar stories of kids in charge of themselves:

The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron

Betti on the High Wire by Lisa Railsback

How to Steal a Dog by Barbara O'Connor

The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson

Afternoon of the Elves by Janet Taylor Lisle

One Square Inch by Claudia Mills

The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo

Amelia Lost: the Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart by Candace Fleming

Reading Level: Grades 3-5

Amelia Earhart was one of the most formidable female pilots of her time, spurring her decision to be the first woman to fly around the world - alone. But a few hours into her flight, Amelia's plane lost radio contact with the ground and became lost. She was never found. Fleming's new biography of Earhart is great for younger readers interested in both the story and the time period.

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More books by Candace Fleming

 

Other fascinating biographies:

The Great and Only Barnum by Candace Fleming

Sir Charlie: Chaplin, the Funniest Man in the World

Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip M. Hoose

No Passengers Beyond This Point by Gennifer Choldenko

Reading Level: Grade 5-7

Six-year-old Mouse, twelve-year-old Finn and their unfriendly older sister India are sent to live with their uncle in Colorado after their mother loses the family home. Instead rendezvousing with their Uncle Red at the airport, they are met by a man driving a feather covered car who takes them to Falling Bird a world that seems, a first, much better than the life they left behind.

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More books by Gennifer Choldenko

If you enjoyed this story try:

The Glitch in Sleep by John Hulme and

Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin

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