I work at a Title I school in central California, and many of my students come from difficult home lives. The majority of my students live at or below poverty. This doesn't stop my new 6th graders from wanting to learn and trying their best. Many of my students who I will have in August have not been in an actual classroom in over a year and a half. However, I know these students, because I taught them as 4th graders, and I know they have a love of learning that will not stop them.
I would like to start a literature circle for my sixth-graders next year. Many of them have read very few chapter books, and I think that "Fish in a Tree" would be a great start for them. This book features great messages for my students, many of whom believe that they are not capable of great things.
"If you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, then it will spend its whole life believing that it is stupid." This is also a great story for kids who have dyslexia, because it may help them grow to love their differences.
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