Keeker and the Sneaky Pony

Keeker and the Sneak Pony

By Hadley Higginson, Ill. Maja Andersen

9780811852173

Summary

Keeker has always dreamed of owning a pony; she’s read every book and took riding lessons every summer but it seemed like it would never happen. Then one day Plum cantered into her life, thanks to her mom and dad. But it wasn’t as easy as she imagined. Plum didn’t want to ride with her right away, and she wasn’t easy to pet or play with. Finally, when riding day comes, Plum pushes her luck and winds up throwing Keeker off in the woods. It takes coming to understand how to interact with the pony for Keeker to be able to gain the trust of Plum and ride her back home safely.

Quantitative Summary:

Lexile: 730L

ATOS Book Level:             4.0

Interest Level:   Lower Grades (LG K-3)

Qualitative Summary:

An easy reader book with some illustrations on most pages and large font to instill confidence in beginners. This book focuses on the thoughts of two characters, Keeker and Plum the pony, as they learn to understand each other. The language is simple and the chronology is straight forward, broken up in to small chapters. The message taken from the book is one of navigating a new friendship and learning to be patient with animals.

Curriculum Ties

Good book for girls interested in horses, especially as the book features a “Pony Facts” section at the end. It also imparts good messages about friendship and family.

Standards

MD CCSS

State Curriculum

English Gr. 3

Standard 3.0 Comprehension of Literary Text

TOPIC

A.

INDICATOR

  • 1. Develop comprehension skills by reading a variety of self-selected and assigned literary texts including print and non-print

OBJECTIVES

  1. Listen to critically, read, and discuss a variety of literary texts representing diverse cultures, perspectives, ethnicities, and time periods
  2. Listen to critically, read, and discuss a variety of different types of fiction and nonfiction texts

INDICATOR

  • 2. Use text features to facilitate understanding of literary texts

OBJECTIVES

  1. Identify and explain how organizational aids such as the title of the book, story, poem, or play contribute to meaning

Assessment limits:

  • In the text or a portion of the text
  1. Identify and explain how graphic aids such as pictures and illustrations, punctuation, print features contribute to meaning

Assessment limits:

  • In the text or a portion of the text
  1. Identify and explain how informational aids such as introductions and overviews, materials lists, timelines, captions,glossed words, labels, numbered steps, bulleted lists, footnoted words, pronunciation keys, transition words, end notes, works cited, other information aids encountered in informational texts contribute to meaning

Assessment limits:

  • In the text or a portion of the text
  1. Identify and explain how print features such as large bold print, font size/type, italics, colored print, quotation marks, underlining, other print features encountered in informational texts contribute to meaning

Assessment limits:

  • In the text or a portion of the text

INDICATOR

  • 3. Use elements of narrative texts to facilitate understanding

OBJECTIVES

  1. Identify and distinguish among types of narrative texts such as characteristics of the general categories of fiction versus nonfiction, realistic fiction, tall tales, legends, fables, fairy tales, biographies

Assessment limits:

  • Grade-appropriate narrative texts
  1. Identify and explain the elements of a story

Assessment limits:

  • Main problem, sequence or chronology of events, and solution to the problem
  1. Identify and describe the setting and the mood

Assessment limits:

  • Details that create the setting
  • Details that create the mood
  1. Identify and analyze the characters

Assessment limits:

  • Character’s traits based on what character says, does, and thinks and what other characters or the narrator says
  • Character’s motivations
  • Character’s personal growth and development
  1. Identify and explain relationships between and among characters, setting, and events

Assessment limits:

  • In the text or a portion of the text or across multiple texts
  1. Identify and describe the narrator

Assessment limits:

  • Conclusions about the narrator based on his or her thoughts and/or observations

Innerstar University: A Winning Goal

Innerstar University: A Winning Goal

An American Girl Book

By Laurie Calkhoven, ill. Arcana Studios

97815936983362

Calkhoven, L. 2011. A winning goal. NY: American Girl Publishing.

Summary

In this choose-your-own adventure book, you are a star soccer player on the Innerstar University soccer team, along with your friends. Your friend Shelby is new to soccer but she wants to join the team, and she’d like you to help her with learning the ropes. Your team is on a winning streak right now and it’s a complicated time for you to start helping your friend, who is not very good at soccer yet. Many tough decisions are in your hands right now, do you sacrifice your winning streak to give Shelby time to get better, or do you sacrifice your friendship for the sake of winning the game? Only you can make these decisions in this book, and there are many different ways the story ends.

Quantitative Summary:

Lexile: 710L

Interest level: 8+, Middle Grades

Qualitative Summary:

The narrative structure of this book is a bit complex, requiring readers to navigate through multiple page changes depending on which outcomes they choose. It uses illustrations sparingly.  The knowledge requirements are not complex, with no real allusions to other texts, and themes that are relevant to middle-school aged girls (friendships, teamwork). The language is low, with little to no figurative language.

Curriculum Ties

This book reinforces elements of positive female friendships and teamwork. It can also be used to illustrate cause-and-effect relationships, showing how different choices influence outcomes.Students could write their own choose-your-own adventure stories with more than one outcome.

Standards

MD CCSS

Gr. 8 English

INDICATOR

  • 8. Read critically to evaluate literary texts

OBJECTIVES

  1. Analyze and evaluate the plausibility of the plot and the credibility of the characters
    Assessment limits:
    • In the text or a portion of the text
  1. Analyze and evaluate the extent to which the text contains ambiguities, subtleties, or contradictions
    Assessment limits:
    • Questions and predictions about events, situations, and conflicts that might occur if the text were extended
  1. Analyze and evaluate the relationship between a literary text and its historical, social, and/or political context
    Assessment limits:
    • Implications of the historical or social context on a literary text
  1. Analyze the relationship between the structure and the purpose of the text
    Assessment limits:
    • In the text or a portion of the text

Series website: http://innerstaru.com

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
J.K. Rowling

Rowling, J. K. 1997. Harry Potter and the sorcerer’s stone. NY: Scholastic Press.

ISBN: 9780590353403

Summary:

Harry Potter is an 11-year old orphan living with unhappily with the Dursleys, his mean Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon, as well as their spoiled son Dudley. He hates his life with them, living in a little room under the staircase and suffering daily  torment from Dudley. Then, something strange happens on Dudley’s birthday at the Zoo — it seems Harry could communicate with the python at the Zoo. Even stranger, he seemed to be responsible for the glass suddenly disappearing from the python’s cage.

Then, the letters start coming, first slowly, then all at once, and as much as Harry’s aunt and uncle tried to destroy them, more would arrive. Letters that say that Harry is a wizard and has been accepted into the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. And just when they think they’ve escaped the letters, the lumbering giant Hagrid comes to take Harry away to Hogwarts.

Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is full of adventure and new friends, but it is also shadowed by the rumored return of an all powerful wizard who was responsible for the death of his parents.

Quantitative Summary:

Lexile Measure: 880L

ATOS: 5.5

Interest Level: Middle Grades

Qualitative Summary:

This book is part of a wildly popular and highly merchandized series which makes it a much easier sell, and giving it a wide appeal in age ranges. It uses somewhat complex language, with an invented “wizarding” language woven into the narrative. The book begins with a flash back, but otherwise doesn’t shift the order of events out of chronology.  A singular omniscient narrator tells the story.

Curriculum Tie Ins:

Discussions of characterization are big in this book and would be great to discuss in the English classroom: the characterization of the different houses, the way Voldemort is developed as a villain, and to a lesser extent, the grey area that is Professor Snape. The whole series is good for exploring “coming of age” narratives.

Standards

MD CCSS

English 9-12

Goal 1 Reading, Reviewing and Responding to Texts

The student will demonstrate the ability to respond to a text by employing personal experiences and critical analysis.

EXPECTATION 1.1

The student will use effective strategies before, during, and after reading, viewing, and listening to self-selected and assigned materials.

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.1.1 The student will use pre-reading strategies appropriate to both the text and purpose for reading by surveying the text, accessing prior knowledge, formulating questions, setting purpose(s), and making predictions.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.1.2 The student will use during-reading strategies appropriate to both the text and purpose for reading by visualizing, making connections, and using fix-up strategies such as re-reading, questioning, and summarizing.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.1.3 The student will use after-reading strategies appropriate to both the text and purpose for reading by summarizing, comparing, contrasting, synthesizing, drawing conclusions, and validating the purpose for reading.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.1.4 The student will apply reading strategies when comparing, making connections, and drawing conclusions about non-print text.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.1.5 The student will identify specific structural elements of particular literary forms: poetry, short story, novel, drama, essay, biography, autobiography, journalistic writing, and film.

 

EXPECTATION 1.2

The student will construct, examine, and extend meaning of traditional and contemporary works recognized as having significant literary merit.

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.2.1 The student will consider the contributions of plot, character, setting, conflict, and point of view when constructing the meaning of a text.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.2.2 The student will determine how the speaker, organization, sentence structure, word choice, tone, rhythm, and imagery reveal an author’s purpose.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.2.3 The student will explain the effectiveness of stylistic elements in a text that communicate an author’s purpose.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.2.4 The student will identify and/or explain connections between and among themes and/or styles of two or more texts.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.2.5 The student will extend or further develop meaning by explaining the implications of the text for the reader or contemporary society.

 

INDICATOR

 

  • 1.2.6 The student will extend or further develop meaning by comparing texts presented in different media.

Author’s website: http://www.jkrowling.com

Awards:

  • ALA/YALSA Best Books for Young Adults, 1999
  • ALA/YALSA Best of the Best 100 (Selected from BBYA 1966-99)
  • ALA/YALSA Top Ten Books for Teens, 1999 (Ranked #1)
  • ALA Notable Children’s Books, 1999
  • Book Links Lasting Connections, 1998
  • Booklist Editors’ Choices, 1998
  • Booklist: Top Ten Fantasy Novels for Youth
  • CCBC Choices, 1998: Fiction for Children
  • Publishers Weekly Best Books 1998
  • School Library Journal: Best Books 1998
  • School Library Journal: One Hundred Books that Shaped the Century
  • Parenting magazine: Book of the Year, 1998
  • Parenting magazine: Reading Magic Books, 1998
  • Voice of Youth Advocates: Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror, 1998
  • Anne Spencer Lindbergh Prize for Children’s Literature
  • American Booksellers Association Book of the Year (ABBY)
  • CBC Not Just for Children Anymore! List
  • International Reading Association: Children’s Choices, 1999
  • International Reading Association: Teacher’s Choices, 1999
  • National Council of Teachers of English: Notable Children’s Books in the Language Arts, 1999
  • New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing
  • Wisconsin Educational Media Association Golden Archer Award (Middle/Junior High), 2000
  • Sasquatch Reading Award (Washington), 2000
  • Great Stone Face Children’s Book Award (New Hampshire), 2000
  • Arizona Young Reader’s Award, 2000
  • Wyoming Indian Paintbrush Book Award, 2000
  • Nene Award (Hawaii), 2000
  • Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Award (Illinois), 2001
  • Michigan Reading Association Readers’ Choice Award, 2001
  • Colorado Blue Spruce Young Adult Book Award, 2001
  • Nominated for the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Children’s Literature, 1999
  • Nominated for Children’s Book Award (Massachusetts), 2000
  • Nominated for Children’s Book Award (Utah), 2000
  • Nominated for New York State Charlotte Award, 2000
  • Nominated for Young Reader’s Choice Award (Pacific Northwest Library Association), 2001
  • Nestlé Smarties Book Prize, Gold Medal 9-11 years, 1997
  • FCBG Children’s Book Award, Overall and Longer Novel Category Winner, 1997
  • Birmingham Cable Children’s Book Award, 1997
  • Young Telegraph Paperback of the Year, 1998
  • British Book Awards Children’s Book of the Year (NIBBY), 1997
  • Sheffield Children’s Book Award, 1998
  • Whitaker’s Platinum Book Award, 2001
  • Commended for the 1997 Carnegie Award
  • Shortlisted for the 1997 Guardian Children’s Award
  • W. H. Smith Book of the Year Award, 1997
  • New York State Children’s Choice Award Nominee
  • New York Public Library’s 100 Best Children’s Books from the Last 100 Years

(-http://www.arthuralevinebooks.com/book.asp?bookid=32)