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What novels do you do units on?


Senior Member
I teach 4th grade. My team has some money to spend on novels. We would like to purchase a wide variety of novel sets to use with guided reading instruction. They can be anywhere from 2nd grade level to 5th grade level. What novels do you love, or currently use to teach with?


Senior Member

Some kid favorites are: Frindle (All Andrew Clemens books are majorly popular), The Whipping Boy, The Time Warp Trio books( great companions to S.S.), All Matt Christopher sports books. (Not only popular with the boys). Of course our friends at Wayside School.
Personal Favorites: Caddie Woodlawn, Bridge to Terabethita, All to the "Fudgie" books by Judy Blume, Bud not Buddy. Hope this helps. Have fun with the funds!!!!!:)


Senior Member
Fourth Grade Books

I am currently using "From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler" with my kids. They enjoy it, and there are a lot of activities to go with it. Last year we read "Loser", and we also read "Babe and Me" (both ordered from Scholastic).



Homer Price-4th to go with inventions;
look at author studies such as Patricia Polacco-4th, and others;
Pioneer Cat-3rd, Wagon Wheels-3rd;
Frindle-4th, The Giant Jam Sandwich-3rd;
Non-fiction books for jigsaw activities,
Fairy tale studies; Series studies-Cam Jansen, Magic Treehouse, etc.
Adventures of Ali-Baba Berenstein-3rd/4th,
Corn is Maize;
The Drinking Gourd;
Freckle Juice
That's a few I can remember we used.



Carol Hurst's Lit. Site lists book titles and matches them to the appropriate grade. There's a synopsis of the books and some activities. It would be good to look at, too.


I love Stone Fox and an older but excellent book is Paddle to the Sea by Holling C. Holling. It lends itself to all kinds of activities related to geography, nature, Indians, careers, etc. It has beautiful illustrations and a user friendly 1 page per chapter format.


Senior Member
More ideas

I like the Magic Tree House books that have Research Guides with them - it's a great balance of fiction and non-fiction.

Here are some more of my favorites that I've done with students in 3-5...
The Watson's Go to Birmingham-1963 (my fav of all time) (Curtis)
The Cay (Taylor)
Night of the Twisters (Ruckman)
The Whipping Boy (Fleishman)
Maniac Magee (Spinelli?)
Frindle (Clements)
How to Eat Fried Worms
Chocolate Fever
Walk Two Moons (Creech)
Because of Winn Dixie (DiCamillo)
Fern Gully
All the Sideways books
All the Ramona books
Any Roald Dahl

In my opinion, Teacher Created Materials makes the best novel unit guides - you can even get their guides as e-books from their website (you pay the prince - usually 7.99 - for the guide, and then can immediately download it and print). It saves on time and shipping costs!


Senior Member

I teach 5th grade reading, and here is a list of novels I use for guided reading instruction...
  • Holes (Kids' favorite)
  • Hatchet (Kids' favorite)
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
  • Frindle
  • Tuck Everlasting
  • Shiloh
  • The Kid Who Ran For President
  • Walk Two Moons
  • The Best Christmas Pageant Ever
  • The Best School Year Ever
  • Loser
  • Bridge To Terabithia