Tents. J.

Rollis, Charlemae. Tents. J. 1976.

Tents (Scott Foresman Reading Systems Level 3, Book B)

Like the other books in the odd-covered UNICEF English-language education series, this book is a combination of a short story and a brief nonfiction section. In this case, the short story is  one about two boys named Dan and Carl and their desire to sleep outside in their very own tent—even the rain can’t keep them from enjoying it.  The nonfiction section has instruction on how to make your own tent, whether you make it outside between some trees, off the edge of a porch, or indoors.  The book also has short built-in multiple-choice comprehension questions.

TAGS: J, fiction, chapter, camping, outdoors, tents, crafts, friendship, perseverance

Henry & Mudge and the Wild Wind. J.

Rylant, Cynthia and Sucie Stevenson. Henry & Mudge and the Wild Wind. J. 1993.

Henry and his dog Mudge confront their fears of thunderstorms with help from hot cocoa and his father’s invented game of “crawl-through-enemy-lines.” Chapters are 10-15 pages long.

TAGS: Fiction, chapter, henry and mudge, fears, storms, weather, imagination, crafts, j

Henry & Mudge and the Long Weekend. J.


Rylant, Cynthia and Sucie Stevenson. Henry & Mudge and the Long Weekend. J. 1992.

Henry, his big dog Mudge, and his mom and dad cope with February boredom over a long weekend by building a castle out of old boxes in the basement. Chapters are 5-10 pages long.

TAGS: Henry and mudge, winter, castle, dogs, fiction, chapter, family, funny, crafts, J

Henry & Mudge Under the Yellow Moon. J.

Rylant, Cynthia and Sucie Stevenson. Henry & Mudge Under the Yellow Moon. J. 1987.

Henry and his dog Mudge enjoy walks in the fall, are scared by Halloween stories, and cope with an annoying aunt visiting for Thanksgiving. First chapter is 7 pages long, other chapters are 15-18 pages long.

TAGS: henry and mudge, autumn, Halloween, celebrations, thanksgiving, dogs, fiction, chapter, family, J

Hippos. J.

INFO: Randell, Beverly. Hippos. J. 1998.

DESC: Another reliable animal non-fiction book in the PM ANIMAL FACTS: ANIMALS IN THE WILD series. This book provides a number of interesting tidbits about hippos, arranged by topic/common student inquiry. Among the fascinating facts that Randell’s book points out: how hippos hide from alligators! How deadly the fighting of bull hippos can be! What hippos do in the dry season! Great for students who may not have considered the wild and varied life of these great and deadly beasts. Like others in this series, there’s lots of information on every page – it might be best to use the discussion/review questions on the bottom of each page as writing prompts, and to take this book slowly, over a number of sessions, or as long as student interest permits.

TAGS: hippos, animals, animal facts, scientific facts, non-fiction, african animals, water animals, J

Lions and Tigers. J.

INFO: Randell, Beverly Randell. Lions and Tigers. J. 1998.

DESC: Lions and Tigers is a solid J-level nonfiction in the reliable PM ANIMAL FACTS: ANIMALS IN THE WILD series. It features many different facts about the life of lions, under informative sub-headings, and a series of ‘reflection questions’ about the previous page on the bottom of every page. Students genuinely love the information; and the book’s split between lions and tigers provides an easy transition place/moment to break between sessions or units. Lots of text and information, for a Level J!

TAGS: lions, tigers, animals, scientific facts, animal facts, big cats, cats, non-fiction, J

In the Days of the Dinosaurs: When the Volcano Erupted. J.

INFO: Price, Hugh. In the Days of the Dinosaurs: When the Volcano Erupted. J. 1998.

DESC: A fairly simple & straightforward fiction J. Although this book concerns dinosaurs and their life and times, it does not seem to be a non-fiction book, and introduces relatively little factual content. Chronicles the adventures of a group of “long-neck” dinosaurs as they (well – some of them) flee an erupting volcano and start life again on a small island. An exciting imaginative adventure for struggling readers and dino fans. The page with the dinos swimming across the lake is definitely a winner – first choice for my bathroom wallpaper border, hands down.

TAGS: dinosaurs, volcanos, dinosaur times, ancient times, prehistoric reptiles, natural disasters, ancient natural disasters, fiction, J.

Henry and Mudge and the Wild Wind. J.

INFO: Rylant, Cynthia. Henry and Mudge and the Wild Wind. J. 1993.

DESC: This is the classic “springtime” Henry and Mudge! Henry and Mudge encouter everything from the gusty “wild wind” to terrifying thunderstorms – and, with a little bit of creativity, and some patience, they come through it all alright! As with other books in the Henry and Mudge series, the language is comfortable and familiar, without being sing-song-y, boring, or repetitive; and Rylant introduces choice “challenge words” and phrases (like Henry’s dad’s hilarious declaration about the “enemy couch”) that inspire students to think outside-of-the-box about what they already know!

TAGS: henry and mudge, cynthia rylant, easy reader, easy read, full-color illustrations, pictures, fiction, boy and dog stories, pets, travelling, storms, thunderstorms, fear, springtime, blackouts, power outages, rainbows, J, fiction

Henry and Mudge and the Bedtime Thumps. J.

INFO: Rylant, Cynthia. Henry and Mudge and the Bedtime Thumps. J. 1991.

DESC: Another adorable and charming number in Cynthia Rylant’s Henry and Mudge repertoire. “Bedtime Thumps” is a great read for anyone just emerging from leveled readers – its short, funny, and narratively linked chapters and lush (especially in this installment!) watercolor illustrations make for a striking, wondrous reading experience. Not to mention that both Henry and Mudge are as loveable and believable as they are funny! In this book, Henry’s family goes to visit Henry’s grandmother waaaay out in the country. Her house is tiny – and cluttered. Poor, gigantic Mudge knocks over everything in sight – until he finally gets sentenced to staying outside. What will Henry do without his best companion? How will Henry protect Mudge, if Mudge gets scared? And just what might happen if it’s Henry who’s needing Mudge for company and comfort in this strange new rural environment?

TAGS: easy reader, easy read, full-color illustrations, pictures, fiction, henry and mudge, cynthia rylant, boy and dog stories, dogs, pets, travelling, visiting relatives, strange new places, grandparents, trouble, scared at night