Since summer vacation is practically here—I can taste the popsicles already, I thought it would be a great time to gather up some great reading and writing stuff for tweens. If you click over on the Book Nook- Middle Grade, you’ll see that I’ve added a printable download version of my middle grade reading list. I thought it would be handy for kids or parents to have when searching the library and bookstore bookshelves. These books are targeted at 8-12 year- olds, but some trend more toward upper middle grade 12-14 year-olds too. Most schools supply required summer reading lists, but many give kids the option to pick a book on their own. If that’s the case, I hope the list can help!
But the list is not just for kids. If you write middle grade fiction, it’s important for you to read widely in this age category too. Many genres are represented on the list, so take a peek. I bet you’ll find something you love. Many debut authors are represented, and their stories are amazing!
And…I’m also debuting a new collection of Swirl and Spark bookish downloads, just for tweens…
Why the new venture? Call me crazy, but I like to stay busy. I also like to create. And I love tweens! Last year I had an idea to design some kid friendly writing “accessories” for kids who like to read and write. When people think of downloads though, they often think of a computer app. I’ve designed these downloads to be more hands-on type writing tools for kids.
The first is the Swirl and Spark Story Planner. Using it, they can think over their story ideas with more than just a blank page in front of them. As writers, we love (sometimes) to look at that blank page. It offers opportunity for new ideas. But for kids this can be intimidating. So I’ve designed planning pages (a downloadable, printable PDF file) that can be printed out and placed in a bright binder- ready to take anywhere. Kids can brainstorm their ideas onto pages that guide them along. Included are pages for their title ideas, list of characters, all those character traits, settings, conflicts, and so much more. I’ve also included writing tips on each colorful page. It’s a great motivator and also a great writing tool for any tween who loves writing stories, and would love a great accessory to help them plan and organize it.
The second is the Swirl and Spark Reading Record. Also a downloadable, printable PDF file, it contains colorful log type pages where kids can keep track of the books they’ve read all year. It also contains award pages for each book. Instead of writing a summary to remember their favorite characters and scenes, they can give them awards as indicated on the page. And for kids who can’t bear to let their favorite story end, there are several writing pages where they can add on to the ending of their favorite books!
So that’s the deal. I hope you or a young writer/ reader you know will have fun with their new bookish accessories. Summer is the perfect time to read and write no matter what your age. A little sunshine does wonders for all of our best creative thinking and dreaming, and is definitely the perfect backdrop when reading a great book!
Happy Sunshine, Everyone! See you next week. 🙂