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What novel should I teach to my 6th grade?
Old 12-29-2016, 10:23 PM
 
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Hello ALL-- I am looking for a classic read that my 6th grade would enjoy! I want the novel to be substantial, challenging, and have a great theme that kids can relate to. Any ideas?


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Old 12-31-2016, 07:05 AM
 
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My favorite all time novel to read/teach with my students was The Cay by Theodore Taylor. The kids loved it! Set during WWII in the Caribbean. Two main characters are an 11 year old American boy and an old Black man from the Caribbean who are stranded on a deserted island after the ship they are in is torpedoed by the Germans. It's a story of survival, friendship, racial prejudice, respect, and age. The kids fall in love with Timothy who is the old man. He's wise and teaches the boy, Phillip, who lost his vision from the explosion, how to survive on the island. Phillip learns to love and respect Timothy, having been raised by a mother who was prejudiced. The story is rich in figurative language, new vocabulary, and filled so many events and topics for discussion. There is an audio tape of the book well worth getting because it helps with the pronunciation of some words and Timothy's character is read in the native dialect, which the kids loved and got very good at doing too. This book made a lasting impact on my kids and is one of my favorite books ever. It definitely meets your wish for a substantial and challenging book, and it's a book your kids won't want to put down.
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Old 12-31-2016, 11:27 AM
 
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I second The Cay. My students love The Giver, Number the Stars, any novel centered around WW II.
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Old 01-01-2017, 06:52 AM
 
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Love those two books as well, Rt2Learn!
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Old 05-31-2017, 05:31 AM
 
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My students soak in Letters from Rifka. Although the reading level is not listed as 6th grade, the students (even the reluctant readers) are hooked and participate fully with the assignments. I have a rigorous unit developed (pulling from other teachers' creations), and the kids don't complain about the work associated with it.


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6th Grade Novels
Old 06-23-2017, 09:20 AM
 
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My 6th graders do Wrinkle in Time, The Phantom Tollbooth, The Giver, and Bud, Not Buddy. At our school they read The Cay in 5th grade. I've heard Wonder is awesome also, but they do that in 5th grade at my school too!
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My students loved
Old 06-23-2017, 05:04 PM
 
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Hatchet and The Watsons Go to Birmingham.
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Old 06-23-2017, 05:27 PM
 
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I loved teaching The Giver and A Wrinkle in Time to sixth graders, and I had a great project for after we read both. They had to create a "utopian civilization." It tied in perfectly to our study of early civilizations because they had to consider what makes a civilization, and after reading these books, they had to really think deeply about what they value most in a society and create laws and systems to emphasize those. We were also able to have great discussions about morality, free will, self-sacrifice, freedom of vs freedom from responsibility, value of pain, value and meaning of love, self-esteem, and more. Because I was at a Christian school, we also discussed predestination vs free will, religion vs relationship, and what it means to be light in the darkness.

I miss teaching those books so much!


Oh, and The Tale of Despereaux. Any reading skill or strategy you can think of can be demonstrated with Despereaux, and it's a beautiful story of courage, forgiveness, love, and honor. It's my all time favorite children's novel.

Last edited by Gromit; 06-23-2017 at 05:51 PM..
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6th grade novels
Old 07-08-2017, 12:16 PM
 
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We do Hoot, Esperanza Rising, and Watsons Go to Birmingham and during the 4th quarter, I do either Crispin (so I can tie in the Middle Ages--I also teach SS) or The Devil's Arithmetic. Last year, we read Freedom Walkers (nonfiction) before during Watsons Go to Birmingham.
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Novels for 6th Grade
Old 07-15-2017, 04:44 AM
 
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This past year I used Hatchet. Our 6th Grade Social Studies curriculum focues on Ancient History. The students love The Golden Goblet.


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