2008 Summer/Fall Non-Fiction

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Nancy's picks for the best non-fiction of summer/fall 2008 and ideas for using them in the classroom. Compiled by Nancy Polette 2008.

Adler, David A. FUN WITH ROMAN NUMERALS. Illustrated by Edward Miller III. Holiday House 2008. Grades 2-4
What are Roman numerals and how do we use them?

Bardhan-Quallen, Sudipta. BALLOTS FOR BELVA Illustrated by Courtney A. Martin. Abrams, 2008. Grades 3-6
The story of a woman's race to the presidency.

Berne, Jennifer. MANFISH: A STORY OF JACQUES COUSTEAU. Illustrated by Eric Puybaret. Chronicle Books, 2008. Gr. 1-3
The little boy who fell in love with the sea and wanted to swim like the fish grew up to be Jacques Cousteau, champion of the seas. A charming biography.

Clinton, Catherine. PHILLIS'S BIG TEST. Illustrated by Jean Qualls. Houghton Mifflin, 2008. Grades 2-4
In 1773 Phillis Wheatly, a slave, published a book of poetry. She was required to take a test to prove that the poems were hers. No one wanted to believe the truth, that an African girl was the author of such fine poetry.

Cunxin, Li. DANCING TO FREEDOM. Illustrated by Anne Spudvilas. Walker, 2008. G 2-4.
The true story of Mao's last dancer, a poor Chinese boy who danced in cities around the world.

Deem, James M. BODIES FROM ICE. Houghton Mifflin, 2008. Grades 4-8
As glaciers melt, the disappearing ice reveals bodies that have long been frozen and cultures of long ago.

Fradin, Dennis, DUEL! Illustrated by Larry Day. Walker, 2008. Grades 3-6.
Former friends, Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton face each other in a duel.

Gilson, Jamie. CHESS! I LOVE IT I LOVE IT I LOVE IT.
Richard does love chess and belonging to the chess club at school but he usually loses and Patrick the Pest is no help. What will happen when Richard is expected to take part in the chess tournament.

Goodman, Susan E. SEE HOW THEY RUN. Bloomsbury, 2008. Grades 4-6
All about campaign dreams, election schemes and the race to the White House. . A light-hearted approach with lots of information. A must have book!

Leedy, Loreen. CRAZY LIKE A FIX A SIMILE STORY. Holiday House, 2008 Grades 1-3
A fun introduction to similes.

Ljungkvist, Laura, FOLLOW THE LINE AROUND THE WORLD. Viking, 2008. Grades 1-2
Learn about animals and their habitats all around the world.

Lutes, Jason and Nick Bertozzi. HOUDINI THE HANDCUFF KING. Hyperion, 2008. Grades 5-7
Simple storytelling and clear cartoon art tell the daring escapes of Houdini.

Morris, Gerald. THE ADVENTURES OF SIR LANCELOT THE GREAT. Illustrated by Aaron Renier.
An easy to read chapter book that tells of the exciting and funny adventures of Sir Lancelot who was good at defending the helpless as long as he had his afternoon nap.

Moses, Will. RAINING CATS AND DOGS. Philomel, 2008. Grades 2-4.
A collection of idioms and illustrations.

Philbrick, Nathaniel, THE MAYFLOWER AND THE PILGRIMS' NEW WORLD. Putnam, 2008. Grades 6-10.
Adapted for young people from the Mayflower.

Spradlin, Michael. DANIEL BOONE'S GREAT ESCAPE. Illustrated by Ard Hoyt. Walker, 2008. Grades 2-4.
A true tale of Daniel Boone's escape from the Shawnee Indians.

Talbott, Hudson. UNITED TWEETS OF AMERICA. Putnam's, 2008. Grades 2-4
Birds and their home states come to life with energy and humor.

Thimmesh, Catherine. MADAME PRESIDENT. Illustrated by Douglas B. Jones. Houghton Mifflin, 2004. Grades 4-8
Read about strong, capable women who paved the way for women leaders of tomorrow including Abigail Addams, Eleanor Roosevelt, Madeleine Albright and many more.

Truss, Lynne. TWENTY-ODD DUCKS. Illustrated by Bonnie Timmons. Putnams, 2008. Grades 2-4
Putting a punctuation mark in the wrong place can completely change the meaning!

Yolen, Jane. NAMING LIBERTY. Illustrated by Jim Burke. Philomel, 2008. Grades 2-4
The story of the building of the statue.