IMWAYR ~ April 15

I hope the weather near everyone is sunny, warm, and beautiful. Here in St. Louis we got a wonderful mix of snow and rain on Sunday, but not it's cold but sunny! I love some STL weather LOL! As I was scrolling through Instagram, I also saw there are a lot of east coast teachers that are on spring break this week or will be on spring break soon. I hope you have, had or will have a lovely spring break and some much-needed reading time :).

Here's what we are reading this week!

Image result for the mighty heart of sunny st. james 

Image result for the night gardener book

Image result for diary of an awesome friendly kid   Image result for i'm not dying with you tonight book

Image result for blended by sharon draper 

I hope you have a great reading week!

We Were Beautiful Blog Tour

We are pleased to be a stop on the Blog Tour for We Were Beautiful by Heather Hepler! Be sure to check out this book about family, love, and loss! Released April 2. 


Purchase Link:

Adult Non-Fiction with Young Reader's Versions

A couple of years ago several of my friends were talking about this memoir by an African American man called Trevor Noah. I honestly had no idea who Trevor Noah was and after seeing a friend gawk at me after I said that, I thought, well I guess I should look into this must be good! I am SO GLAD that I did, because even though I don’t watch Noah’s late night talk show, The Daily Show, I still really, really enjoyed reading his memoir Born a Crime.

When I saw that Random House was releasing a young reader’s version, I was beyond ecstatic to read it and see how it would be adapted for a younger reader. Spoiler: it was fan-tas-tic!

Trevor Noah is mixed race. His mom is African and still lives in Johannesburg and his dad is Swedish. He was born in Africa when institutional racism called Apartheid (a-par-tide) existed. Multi-racial relationships were illegal and having children with someone of another race was even worse. 

Noah’s birth was a crime in Africa.

Kids are going to lose their minds to learn this... and the kicker is, this didn't happen a long time ago. Trevor Noah is only 35 years old. Apartheid ended in the 90s ... and even though Apartheid has ended, like legal segregation has ended in the States, the racism in Africa is still horrible.

Reading about what life was like for Noah in Africa was so interesting and I learned so much about African history that I didn’t know. And, honestly, I felt ashamed that I knew so little. Kids are going to devour this book. Noah and his publisher did a fantastic job at adapting this (very mature) story for kids to read without sacrificing the integrity of Noah’s past. It is recommended for ages 10 and up and I would recommend a grade level of 5th grade and up.

Reading Born a Crime did get me thinking about all of the other important non-fiction adult stories that are published and what Young Reader’s Editions are out there. Below is a list of several pairings that would be fantastic to add to your classroom or library’s non-fiction section.

Adult Title
Young Reader’s Edition

Thank you so much to the MANY people that weighed in on this topic on Twitter! I learned about SO MANY new titles that I didn't know had a young reader's companion! 

With many of these books, the content is mature. Please read the young reader's version before putting them in your library so you know it is appropriate for your grade level. 

This post contains affiliate links. 

It's Monday, What Are You Reading?

Hello, friends! I hope everyone had a lovely weekend!

Here in Iowa, the snow has mostly melted but the weather is still doing that yo-yo thing where you get 1-2 nice days then several chilly days in a row. We just want a nice spring! It's coming very soon though, I can feel it! Have you packed away all of your winter clothes yet? I haven't yet, but I want to!

This time of year is traditionally so busy. Test prep, testing, field trips, extra assemblies and concerts and squeezing in as much instruction as possible... I have nine weeks of school left and I know those nine weeks are going to fly. It feels like we still have so much to do! How much time do you have left?

However busy we are though, there's still a little time to squeeze in for reading, even if it's just 10 minutes before shutting your eyes for the night or listening to an audiobook on the drive to and from work! I know for me, I'm always a little happier when I've made time to read. :)

Here is what we're making time for:

Come tell us what you're reading this week in the comments below!

The Becket List - Release 4/2

The Becket List was such a quirky, fun, energetic story, that had me wanting to know more about Becket (formerly Rebecca). The Becket List had such a modern day Ramona Quimby feel to it, that I know students of all ages in elementary will enjoy her story. 

The novel is about Becket who moves with her family to the country from the big city, and if anybody knows that life transition - it is definite culture shock. Which it continues to be for Becket. As she adjusts she finds that life is not that easy, so she comes up with a plan, the "list", to help her adjustment. BUT - as well know, nothing ever goes according to plan. Becket has to learn that life in the country may not be what she's heard or seen on TV, but so much more. 

Becket's attitude is infectious and I can only hope her positivity finds its way into the hearts of kids all over. 

Advanced praise:
“This is not just a terrific book about sharing friends with siblings, rolling with changes, and the difficulty of making new friends after a move. It is also (spoiler alert) a terrific, gentle, earnest book for coping with pet loss…A sparkling story of weathering change.”
– Bookliststarred review

“Warm and amusing as Becket and her two siblings navigate their new life on a farm.”
– Kirkus Reviews

About the book:
Everything is changing for Becket Branch. From subways to sidewalks to safety rules, Becket is a city kid born and raised. Now the Branch family is trading urban bustle for big green fields and moving to Gran’s farm, where Becket has to make sense of new routines from feeding animals to baling hay. And as much as Becket loves to yell “Beautiful Alert!” there’s a lot about the countryside that is just plain odd.

But Becket is ready to put her own spin on country life. Whether selling her mouth-puckering lemonade, feeding hostile hens, or trying to make a best friend of her new neighbor Frieda Franca, Becket is determined to use her city smarts to get a grip on farm living. Laugh and learn with Becket as she mucks through the messy, exuberant human experience of change she didn’t ask for, in a story that sparkles with quirky characters and lasting connections.

About the author:
Adele Griffin is the acclaimed author of Tell Me No Lies and Be True to Me, as well as Sons of Liberty and Where I Want to Be, both finalists for the National Book Award. She lives with her husband and children in Brooklyn, New York. You can find her online at or on Twitter: @adelegriffin.

*click the picture above to purchase for your classroom! It comes highly recommended by my 5th graders! 

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