Five Must-Read Page-Turning Novels for Your Fifth Grader
Keeping the list down to five books was very difficult, but here are the five must-reads that I came up with (based on books I loved when I was that age and also from pupils I taught):
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory / Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl - Ok, I cheated here and have two books, but they really could be one story as Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator goes on to tell what really happened when Willy Wonka, Charlie Bucket and his family take off in the great glass elevator. Even if you have watched the movie, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a magical and amusing read for all ages.
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone) by J.K. Rowling - This is the first in the Harry Potter series and was written for children in the 10 - 11 year age range. This introduction to Harry and his best friends Hermione and Ron in their first year at Hogwarts should hook most children. If you have read this already, the second in the series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, is also written for this age level.
- A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle - Although this book was written in the 60s, it continues to be a favourite. It tells the story of Meg Murry, her younger brother, Charles Wallace, and Calvin O'Keefe as they search for Meg's father who has disappeared while working on secrect government research. The story begins on a dark and stormy night with the arrival of a very unusual stranger ...
- The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster - This book is hilarious for both children and adults alike. This is a unique tale about Milo, who is always bored, until one day a tollbooth arrives in his bedroom. After Milo drives his toy car through the tollbooth, we are introduced to all kinds of new and interesting characters. Milo's life can be described as anything but dull from this moment forward.
- From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg - Claudia decides to run away for one day to teach her parents a lesson. She has it all planned out, where she is going to run to, for how long and who she is going to bring along (her younger brother ... for his money). Claudia and James run away to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and once settle there, their adventures really begin with a mystery that makes headlines.
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