Monday, April 10, 2017

What Kids Read #5

This month we are bringing back an old segment "What Kids Read". This segment consists of interviews with Librarians, Teachers, and Educators about what kids read. If you are in one of those categories and would like to be interviewed for the blog, please email MGminded (at) gmail (dot) com and put "What Kids Read" in the subject line. And if you have questions about what kids read that you'd like answered send them to the same email address.

This month we have Gaye Sanders answering questions for us.

1.) What grades/age groups do you work with? I teach 4th grade English Language Arts.  I teach 3 classes, so I have 75 fourth graders.  Plus, this is my 35th year to teach.

2.) What are some of your favorite middle grade books?This question is hard to answer!  I read a lot of middle grade, since I not only teach this age but I am an aspiring Middle Grade author, in current search of an agent.  So I read!
Lately, I've loved:
The Crossroads by Chris Grabenstein
Half a Chance by Cynthia Lord
My Diary from the Edge of the World by Jodi Lynn Anderson
Ms. Bixby's Last Day by John David Anderson
But my favorites are, of course Harry Potter, Becoming Naomi Leon by Pam Munoz Ryan, and Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan.

3.) What genres/topics do kids seem to ask for the most? What book titles are the most popular with kids right now?
I see kids continually want to read Diary of a Wimpy Kid or Dork Diaries, or fantasy like Harry Potter, Artemis Fowl, etc.  They also love the Reina Telgemeir books. 

However, I always take the time to turn my kids on to the other genres and authors, namely Newberry winners.  They love them after I've read them to the kids, and will say, "That's a book I would never have picked up, but now it's a favorite!"

4.) What do kids seem to like the least or what do kids complain about when it comes to books? I think kids would complain if the graphic novels were banned, or not allowed.  I don't see that much complaining, though.  If a kid doesn't like to read, I work super hard to eventually find something that he or she will connect to.

5.) What gets kids excited about reading?Kids get excited about reading when I am excited about the books.  I do a "Book Commercial" several times a week.  I'll tell my spiel of the book and find a trailer on You Tube.  It keeps them excited and they always want to see what I'm going to share next.

6.) If you've had author visits/Skype chats etc. at your library/classroom what worked well and what didn't?
Skype.  I have really not used it and shame on me!  I have to admit that it's just that I haven't taken the time to set it up.  Hopefully after  testing!

7.) Any other thoughts about children's literature or reading you'd like to share?
Other I said, I feel it's my duty to inspire these kids to love to read, to crawl in that book and take an adventure! 

Gaye Sanders has been an elementary school teacher for 35 years and counting! She's also a kidlit writer, mostly writing Middle Grade Contemporary, but she does have a PB coming out later this year about the Oklahoma City National Memorial Survivor Tree.

When not teaching, writing, or reading, she loves to explore! Gaye loves travel near and far, and often uses those adventures to fuel her stories. She has two grown boys who live in the Oklahoma City area.
You can find Gaye on Twitter and Instagram. She also occasionally blogs at


Becky said...

Great article! Thank you for sharing.

GayeSanders said...

Thank you! So glad to have the opportunity!

Amy said...

Teachers are right at the source, so to speak. Thanks for sharing and thank you for inspiring kids to read!