Remember earlier this summer when I introduced you to the Scholastic Mother Daughter Book Club for middle readers? I'm committed to featuring or reviewing all the books selected for this club because I think Scholastic has picked winning titles that have broad appeal.
Don't forget that the Scholastic book club site includes more information about the books, recipes, reading guides, and contests. The resources are perfect for book clubs, teachers, homeschoolers, and any one who wants to get more out of reading books with middle grade readers.
Allie has a lot to contend with. First, she's having trouble getting along with Mary Kay, her BFF since kindergarten. Second, she just found out that her parents want to move across town, which means a new house, new school, and new friends. Even the promise of a kitten isn't enough to make Allie warm up to the idea of moving. And to top it off, no matter how many rules she tried to follow, she somehow ended up on the bad side of her friends and parents. Can Allie figure out a way to make peace with all these changes?
Moving Day is a terrific book club pick for young readers. The story can be read on several levels, all of which offer plenty of avenues for discussion. The most obvious approach is to focus on Allie's rules, one of which is given at the start of each chapter. Some are serious (be polite to adults), and some are particular to Allie (don't eat red foods); some she already knows well (don't cross Brittany Hauser), and others she discovers along the way (sometimes things are better than they first appear). Other topics for discussion are the meaning of friendship, standing up for what you believe in, adjusting to change, and helping your family. For more ideas check out the Scholastic book club site.
At the core of Drama is Callie's work on the middle school's spring musical. She loves working back stage, especially on set design. She has grand ideas, and through hard work and the help of her friends, Callie is able to meet most of her expectations. Drama, however, is less about the play and more about relationships (making sense of crushes and friendships), self-discovery, and acceptance of others.
The drama in Callie's life occurs both on and off stage as she tries to understand her crazy feelings for her good friend's older brother and then for two cute boys, who just happen to be twins. In the meantime, she and the other drama students are helping each other with the musical production.
Raina Telgemeier approaches the many types of relationships with sensitivity, in both her writing and her artwork. Young readers will want to talk about crushes and finding the right person, homosexuality, and same-sex and opposite-sex friendships. Other discussion topics for Drama include getting involved in extracurricular activities and gaining self-confidence.
The scan is from page 37 and shows a scene in which Callie's friend Liz, the student in charge of costumes, asks the others to go with her down to the basement prop room. The page has no spoilers but gives you a preview of the illustrations. Click the scan to enlarge it.
This post will be linked to Kid Konnection, hosted by Julie at Booking Mama.
Buy Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls: Moving Day at an Indie or at a bookstore near you (link leads to an affiliate program).
Scholastic Press, 2009; ISBN-13: 9780545040419
Buy Drama at an Indie or at a bookstore near you (link leads to an affiliate program).
Scholastic Press, 2011; ISBN-13: 9780545326995
Source: Review (see review policy)
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