Emphasizing the need to develop higher-level thinking skills and critical discussion with intermediate and middle school struggling readers, Williams uses quality children's literature as a springboard to help readers: understand and use descriptive vocabulary and figurative language, make personal connections with text, create and solve text related mathematical problems, promote an active, engaged discussion and critical analysis of the story and the important issues raised in text, extend meaning through research and writing, art, and drama. To help teachers match student to text, literature selections are categorized according to interest (e.g., mystery, sports, humor, identity/solving problems), genre, and include reading level, interest level, and number of pages. Discussion questions and extension activities_specific to over 100 children's literature selections_provide opportunities for students to ask questions, discuss and use descriptive language, make predictions and inferences, evaluate story elements, and critically reflect on character perspectives and social issues raised in the text. All questions are appropriate for individual work, special education classrooms, general education and inclusion classrooms, and help teachers facilitate literature discussion groups, book club discussion and response writing, self-regulated reading, guided reading, and whole class discussions.
Reading and interest levels, five to eight discussion questions, and extension activities (writing, art, drama) are provided for more than one hundred selected books. The questions are coded according to their purpose in eliciting student responses...A useful chapter on professional resources includes Web sites, and appendixes include lists of books by genre and interest. Williams interweaves up-to-date research and writing into the field in her discussions. This book will be a highly useful text for youth librarians and teachers.--VOYA