Neil Gaiman

All posts tagged Neil Gaiman

4th and 5th grade fiction book club

Published December 12, 2014 by Dagmar

We just wrapped our 4th and 5th grade fiction book club last week.  Last school year, I hosted a California Young Readers’ Medal book club.  I loved seeing our best readers bond as a group.  When I say these students are our best clients, I’m serious.  These kids really read.

outofmymindI chose five books for my students.  I started with these books: Al Capone Does My Shirts,  by Gennifer Choldenko; The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell, by Chris Colfer; The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman; Out of My Mind, by Sharon Draper; and What We Found Al Capone Doesin the Sofa and How it Saved the World, by Henry Clark.  I chose The Land of Stories, because my niece, a fifth grader, told me the Land of Stories was one of the best books she’d read.  I loved it, myself.

Not only did most of my students finish all five of the books I chose, they added books to my list and managed to finish most of those books, too – all while checking out library books to read each week.  Wow.

HLand of Storiesere’s what my students added to our reading list: A Stone in My Hand, by Cathryn Clinton; Elijah of Buxton, by Christopher Paul Curtis; Island of Blue Dolphins, by Scott O’Dell; Almost Home, by Joan Bauer.  Great choices.  I loved every one of these books myself.

At our party, I polled all my students on their favorite books.  Out of My Mind won by a mile.  My niece Face Timed me last week to tell me that she’d just read another great book…Out of My Mind. 🙂  I wish she could join my book club!

Look for reviews of these books soon.


Chu’s Day, by Neil Gaiman

Published November 21, 2013 by Dagmar

Chu's DayHere’s a fun one for the pre-k-kindergarten set.  Neil Gaiman, Newbery award-winning author of The Graveyard Book, is back with a very cute picture book about a little panda that has to sneeze.  What really makes this book, though, are the incredibly colorful and rich illustrations by Adam Rex, reminiscent to me of Pete & Pickles, a real favorite of mine and with older students in my library.

When Chu sneezes, bad things happen.  Chu visits the library with his mom and looks like he needs to sneeze.   When he visits the diner with his dad, he looks like he needs to sneeze.  My students appreciated my theatrical “almost sneezes” and then laughed when adorable Chu said “No,” he didn’t have to sneeze.  Then, Chu and his parents visit the circus – you know – then one with the really big tent?  Chu tries and tries to tell his folks, who are enthralled by the circus, that he needs to sneeze.  No one listens.  Oops.  That sneeze not only knocks down the circus tent, but also everything in the library and diner too, much to the delight of my students.

If you’re looking for a hit with your younger students, you’ll enjoy Chu’s Day.