Thursday, March 23, 2017

Build a Better World: Middle Grade Book List for the 2017 Summer Reading Program

These books for upper elementary and middle school readers all relate to themes of Architecture, Building, and Construction which are the focus of this year's Build a Better World summer reading program.

My Life in Dioramas by Tara Altebrando
Kate Marino loves her family home, Big Red, and she can't bear the thought of it being sold. As her parents show the house to potential buyers, Kate works to scare them away with a series of pranks.

Fort by Cynthia DeFelice
Eleven-year-old friends Wyatt and Augie are thrilled when they are given permission to build and sleep out in their very own fort, but they don't count on being discovered by Gerard, a teenager in the neighborhood with special needs, or becoming his defenders against some serious bullies.

The Wheel on the School by Meindert DeJong
After Dutch schoolgirl Lina writes an essay about the lack of storks in the fishing village of Shora, her teacher challenges her and her five classmates to find a way to bring the storks back to their community.

Ramshackle Roost by Jane Flory
The Stuart family relocate to a tumbledown shack after a falling out with their landlords during a 1920s summer.

Tuesdays at the Castle by Jessica Day George
Castle Glower, which has a mind of its own and changes its own layout periodically, is the setting for a tale of political intrigue starring Celie, the youngest daughter of King Glower the 79th, who must help her brother Rolf prove that their parents and older brother have not been killed and and drive off the usurpers who would try to steal the throne.

The House of Dies Drear by Virginia Hamilton
Mysterious happenings ensue when Thomas Small, his parents, and his infant siblings move from North Carolina to Ohio to live in a house which was part of the Underground Railroad and belonged to an abolitionist named Dies Drear.

Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
Afflicted by a curse that drives her from her family, Sophie finds herself seeking shelter in the mysterious moving castle of the dreaded Howl, who has a reputation for harming young girls.

Greenglass House by Kate Milford
During his Christmas vacation, Milo and his family expect their inn, Greenglass House, to be vacant, so they are shocked when, one after another, guests keep arriving. Amidst the crowd, Milo links up with the cook's daughter, Meddy, who teaches him to play a roleplaying game that allows them to spy on the suspicious behavior of the guests, all of whom have ulterior motives.

The Enchanted Castle by E. Nesbit
During a holiday from school, three siblings stumble upon a castle, and a young girl who claims to be a princess. When the princess accidentally turns invisible, an adventure begins.

Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes
Deja, a ten-year-old homeless girl, learns for the first time about what happened in New York City on September 11, 2001 and how her father was affected.

Any Which Wall by Laurel Snyder
Henry and Emma, Roy and Susan discover a magic wall and use it to satisfy some of their wishes.

Last in a Long Line of Rebels by Lisa Lewis Tyre
When Louise “Lou” Mayhew learns that her historic house is in danger of being condemned, she starts looking for ways to save it and learns there might be buried treasure somewhere on the property.

Building Blocks by Cynthia Voigt
Brann, who has trouble understanding his father, gains some insight into the way his father was raised when he travels back in time via his father's childhood set of building blocks.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Build a Better World: Chapter Book List for the 2017 Summer Reading Program


This list of chapter books connects with this summer's Build a Better World reading program, which focuses on Architecture, Building, and Construction.

Sprout Street Neighbors: Five Stories by Anna Alter
Stories about the different animals who live as neighbors in an apartment building at 24 Sprout Street.

Enchanted Palace by Rosie Banks
When best friends Ellie, Summer, and Jasmin find a magic box they are swept away to an enchanted castle where King Merry's 1000th birthday party is about to be ruined by a thunderbolt from Queen Malice.

The Family Under the Bridge by Natalie Savage Carlson, illustrated by Garth Williams
A struggling mother and three children befriend an elderly homeless man named Armand, and they make their home together under a Paris bridge.

Orphelines in the Enchanted Castle by Natalie Savage Carlson, illustrated by Adriana Saviozzi
When imaginative French orphans move into their new home, they become convinced it is an enchanted castle.

The School is Alive by Jack Chabert, illustrated by Sam Ricks
This first book in the Eerie Elementary series introduces a sentient school building against which Sam must fight to protect his friends.

Help! I'm a Prisoner in the Library by Eth Clifford
In a snowstorm, two sisters are accidentally trapped in a library overnight.

Welcome to Silver Street Farm by Nicola Davies, illustrated by Katharine McEwen
A group of animal-loving friends work to turn an abandoned railway station into a working farm.

Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
When Mercy Watson, a pig, snuggles up with her owners, the Watsons, the bed surprisingly crashes through the floor. Mercy must quickly notify the police and bring them over for a rescue.

The Lucky Wheel by Grace Gilmore, illustrated by Petra Brown
In this historical fiction story, Maple Ridge needs a new school house, and Logan wants to help by restoring and selling an old wagon wheel, even though no one believes he can take on such a task.

The Dragonsitter's Castle by Josh Lacey, illustrated by Garry Parsons
Uncle Morton always seems to be leaving his dragon with Eddie. In this third book of the series, Eddie is forced to take the dragon with him on vacation to the castle his father is renovating.

Kindred Souls by Patricia MacLachlan
Jake and his grandfather, Billy have a special friendship. When Jake learns that Billy will soon die, he decides to grant him one last wish and rebuild the sod house where Billy grew up.

Home Sweet Horror by James Preller, illustrated by Iacopo Bruno
When Liam Finn and his family relocate to a fixer-upper in upstate New York, Liam senses that something is very wrong. After a game of Bloody Mary takes a terrifying turn, only the spirit of Liam's late mother can save the family.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Build a Better World: Easy Reader List for the 2017 Summer Reading Program


These books for beginning readers have been selected for their suitability to this summer's Build a Better World theme, which focuses on Architecture, Building, and Construction.

The Inside Story: Log Cabin by Dana Meachen Rau
Simple text shows how log cabins are built.

Dig Scoop Ka-boom! by Joan Holub, illustrated by David Gordon
A group of diggers seem towork the day away, but they turn out to be toys in a sandbox.

Mega Machines by Deborah Lock
A DK reader including photos of big construction vehicles on the job.

Mr. Putter and Tabby Paint the Porch by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Arthur Howard
Mr. Putter is painting his front porch when a squirrel scampers through his paint, making a mess.

Henry and Mudge and the Tall Tree House by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Carolyn Bracken
When Henry gets a new tree house, he worries about whether Mudge will be able to come inside.

National Geographic Readers: Skyscrapers by Libby Romero
A brightly colored level 3 nonfiction reader with facts about the world's most interesting skyscrapers.

Fly Guy Presents Castles by Tedd Arnold
Factual information about castles is presented by beloved easy reader character Fly Guy.

Amazing Buildings by Katie Hayden
A level 2 DK reader that shows off different types of buildings from around the world.

Homes Around the World by Max Moore
A level 1 DK reader showing how and where people live in different parts of the world.

First Shapes in Buildings by Penny Ann Lane
A simple text illustrated with photographs of buildings that teaches kids the words for different shapes.

A Day in the Life of a Builder by Linda Hayward
This level 1 DK reader follows a construction worker through a day of work.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Build a Better World: Picture Book List for the 2017 Summer Reading Program


This year's CSLP summer reading theme is Build a Better World, with a focus on Architecture, Building, and Construction. These appealing picture books all tell stories related to these topics.


Building a House by Byron Barton
A construction crew builds a house and prepares it for a family to move in.

Building Our House by Jonathan Bean
A boy narrates the details of the process he and his family undertake to build their new house.

Tinyville Town Gets to Work! by Brian Biggs
Community leaders work together to replace a bridge that causes traffic jams.

Stanley the Builder by William Bee
Hamster Stanley builds a brand-new house for Myrtle the mouse with the help of some other rodent friends.

The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton
A humble country home survives the changes brought about by an increase in industry.

Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel by Virginia Lee Burton
Mike Mulligan and his supposedly outdated steam shovel, Mary Anne, prove their worth by digging a basement in just one day. 

Billions of Bricks by Kurt Cyrus
This book shows how bricks are laid and what types of buildings are made from them, while also reinforcing some counting concepts.

Alphabet Under Construction by Denise Fleming
Each letter is given a tool-based spin in this alphabet book.

The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordicai Gerstein
A picture book biography remembering Philippe Petit's tightrope walk between the twin towers several decades prior to their destruction on September 11, 2001.

Tip Tip Dig Dig by Emma Garcia
An onomatopoetic celebration of the work done by construction vehicles.

Clancy and Millie and the Very Fine House by Libby Gleeson, illustrated by Freya Blackwood
When Clancy moves to his new home, he misses his old neighborhood terribly, but when he meets Millie, she helps make the transition more comfortable.

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Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building by Christy Hale
A collection of concrete poetry about building.

The Construction Crew by Lynn Meltzer, illustrated by Carrie Eko-Burgess
This colorfully illustrated rhyming book introduces the people and machines who work to build new homes.

Hush Little Digger by Ellen Olson-Brown, illustrated by Lee White
A piggyback song based on Hush Little Baby for construction-loving kids to sing at bedtime.

Where Do Diggers Sleep at Night? by Brianna Caplan Sayres, illustrated by Christian Slade
This book shows how diggers get ready for bed in routines that mirror kids' regular nighttime tasks.

Old MacDonald Had a Woodshop by Lisa Shulman, illustrated by Ashley Wolff
Another piggyback song, this time about a sheep whose handy farm friends help build a special surprise.

Block City by Robert Louis Stevenson, illustrated by Daniel Kirk
An illustrated version of a well-loved poem of childhood.

I Love Tools by Philemon Sturges
A boldly illustrated introduction to the different types of tools used by builders.

Construction by Sally Sutton
Simple text describes the construction of a building which turns out to be a public library.

This is Our House by Hyewon Yum
A little girl reflects on all the history reflected in her family home.
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