Classics for Big Kids: A Middle Grades Book List #tbt

I’m straying from my usual Throwback Thursday post today and putting on my middle grades librarian hat (don’t worry, not too much dust had collected). My sweet niece sent me this text yesterday:

classic request

Ohhhhh! What a question! What an assignment! Can we define the keyword here?? The waters surrounding what defines a “classic” can be pretty muddy. In my opinion, a classic is a book that has withstood the test of time, staying in print for a sustained period. When we’re applying the definition to children’s literature, I would add that it must continue to hold modern kids’ attention, engaging them and enlarging their world.  So, I’ve put together a list of a few titles for Niece Bookworm. For the sake of this project, I’ve included books that are older than her. 2003. Yeah, now I feel ancient. (She is in sixth grade! Wasn’t I just recommending Pinkalicious and Fancy Nancy to her like yesterday?!)

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Here are my suggestions, in no particular order except the order I thought of them in! Boy was it hard to pare down the list, but I am confident she will find a winner in here! (Are the cool kids still into hashtags these days? I trust she will forgive her aging aunt if not.)

  1. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg (1967) #mystery #MetropolitanMuseumofArt #runaway #museumsleepover
  2. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (1950) #fantasy #magic #allegory #canyouseeJesus
  3. The Giver by Lois Lowry (1993)  #dystopia #idealatwhatcost #keeperofmemories #cliffhanger #callmewhenyoufinishsowecanchat
  4. Holes by Louis Sachar (1998) #diggingholesforcrimes #falselyaccused #familycurse #campgreenlakehasnolake
  5. Half Magic by Edward Eager (1954) #fantasy #magic #wishesgrantedbyhalf #wishfortwiceasmuch
  6. Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit (1975) #fantasty #immortality #becarefulwhatyouwishfor
  7. The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare (1958) #historicalfiction #mobmenality #differentisntevil
  8. Frindle by Andrew Clements (1996) #realisticfiction #powerofwords #expandingthedictionary #makesteacherscryattheend
  9. The Watsons Go to Birmingham- 1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis (1995) #historicalfiction #civilrights #churchbombing #stayswithyou
  10. Number the Stars by Lois Lowry (1989) #historicalfiction #holocaust #courage #heroes

I can’t wait to find out which one she chooses!

Keep Reading!

The books listed in this post should be readily available at your local library, or at the Amazon affiliate links provided. 


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