Upper Elementary to Middle School Books

Theme: Listen!

Animal Snoops: The Wondrous World of Wildlife Spies - (ISBN: 978-1554512164)

by Peter Christie

Read about how animals use their listening skills and other senses to help them survive and thrive. Not only do they listen and watch to survive, but they also might steal another animal’s mate, transmit information about some choice food tidbit, or be more wary when they hear the shake of the rattlesnake tail. Did any of these “tales” surprise you? What new information did you learn?

Children of the Longhouse - (ISBN: 978-0140385045)

by Joseph Bruchac

Ohkwa-ri tells his elders about some older lads’ plot to storm a nearby community that he has overheard them discussing. He receives gratitude from the tribe but punishment and ostracism from the boys in this tale of a Native American life from the past. The senior boys try to hurt him during a lacrosse competition. What is the line between being a snitch and protecting his community?

Far-Flung Adventures: Corby Flood - (ISBN: 978-0385750974)

by Paul Stewart

Corby uses her ears a lot on a family adventure on a ramshackle cruise vessel. She has to figure out what the wailing noise is that comes from below decks. In addition, she eavesdrops mercilessly among the strange passengers and the eccentric men’s group to find that all is not really well aboard. When the boat docks, she has to request help from some locals to resolve the problems she has discovered. How can quiet listening lead to more knowledge?

The Higher Power of Lucky - (ISBN: 978-1416975571)

by Susan Patron

When Lucky’s guardian wants to leave to go to France, Lucky is upset about a number of things in her life ending. She does not want to lose her dog, her best friend Miles, and most of, she cannot bear the thought of not being able to continue eavesdropping on 12-step programs. Although she loves the desert life she now has, she feels she must abandon it all to avoid being put in an orphanage. What are the positive and negative results of her listening in?

The Listening Tree - (ISBN: 978-1554550524)

by Celia Lottridge

Ellen must overcome her timidity at living with her aunt in a new city after she overhears a plot to evict her new neighbors. She has made herself comfortable hiding in an old tree, but her newfound knowledge that she has gained listening while in the hidden spot forces her to take action and work as a member of the community. Have you ever had a favorite comfort spot that you return to again and again?

Extras - (ISBN: 978-1442419780)

by Scott Westerfeld

Prairie Whispers - (ISBN: 978-1417643141)

by Frances Arrington

Rebel Fire - (ISBN: 978-1250010339)

by Andrew Lane

Activities for this Theme

Take a walk in the woods and listen quietly to the sounds you hear. Then compare these to the sounds you hear on a city street.

Listen to the sounds made by the animals in this library from SeaWorld then click the links to read more about each animal.

Visit an older family member or nursing home resident. Have them tell you some stories from their earlier lives. Record them on a tape player or in a journal or consider sharing their story on a story-telling site such as StoryCorps.