Jasper Roberts - Blog

The Golden Recommendation Shelf: Round 1

So I took the advice of Steven Layne this week and started a Golden Recommendation Shelf at school. At first I was skeptical about this working but I am so far pleased with the results. First things first, my hubby and I were on our way to Target and passed by the Borders that is going out of business and I saw a sign that said, "Store Fixtures for Sale" and I begged him to stop. I found the PERFECT shelf and it was only $12! He brought it to school that night because we were performing our musical but forgot the shelves in the car. This turned out to be a great thing because the next day my students were asking, "What is that?" "Why do you have that?" I said, "Well, it's going to be a shelf.." "What for?" they asked. I said, "Well, you'll have to wait and see..." The next day I put up the shelves but left it purposely empty except for a sign that read, "The Golden Recommendation Shelf". They continued to ask questions but I refused to answer. On Friday, I put up my recommendations and told the kids these are books I have read and highly recommend and within two class periods 6 books were checked out! This was so exciting because I love seeing students want to read, but it was also the day before spring break so it was a surprise they were interested in ANYTHING academic!

Here's my list of recommendations (8th Grade) for this round:

Unwind by Neal Shusterman
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
The Face on the Milk Carton Series by Caroline B. Cooney
The Overachievers by Alexandra Robbins
Give a Boy a Gun by Todd Strasser
Full Tilt by Neal Shusterman
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
The Giver by Lois Lowry
Mergers by Steven Layne
Uglies by Scott Westerfield
Eggs by Jerry Spinelli
Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen

I highly recommend these books, some of them for 8th grade especially. There are a lot of dystopian novels here, as well as books that E.T. (Gifted) students would enjoy. If you teach Gifted, I highly recommend The Overachievers by Alexandra Robbins.

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Thanks for stopping by! JW