Written by Sara R. Hunt
Illustrated by Lisa Perrett
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A guide to what you need to become a successful cheerleader. Beginning with a history of cheerleading, this book shows cheer gear, different motions and stunts, and includes traditional cheers and chants. It also emphasizes good habits for succeeding in cheerleading and life: eating healthy, building team spirit, hair and nail care, both on and off the field, even tips on having a successful tryout. Skills that are valuable in cheering include enthusiasm, commitment, even listening. So even if your young reader does not make the squad, she will gain some insight into how to succeed.
This is an accessible introduction to the world of cheerleading. There is a constant emphasis on safety and reminders to get a coach for specific instructions for doing the stunts, letting the reader know that athleticism is expected of a cheerleader. There is also a section on how to put hair into the perfect ponytail and making cheer bows, so this is definitely a girl book.
The photographs are lively and the whimsical diagrams act as a picture dictionary of cheer terminology. The book includes a glossary, a bibliography of both fiction and non-fiction titles, a list of websites and an index.
Even though this book has a reading level of 6.2, its general information will appeal to a younger reader and makes it a good choice to read to a younger book buddy. Because of its clear table of contents, a student could easily make an outline of the book’s content as a literacy activity. There are downloadable activities at the publisher’s website: (https://www.lernerbooks.com/products/t/12456/9780761386346/youve-got-spirit).
- TITLE: You’ve Got Spirit: Cheers, Chants, Tips and Tricks Every Cheerleader Needs to Know
- AUTHOR: Sara R. Hunt
- ILLUSTRATOR: Lisa Perrett
- PUBLISHER: Millbrook/Lerner, 2013
- REVIEWER: Risa Brown
- EDITION: Hardcover, 48 p.
- ISBN: 978-0-7613-8634-6
- GENRE: Non-fiction, sports
- LEXILE: 1000
Written by Glenn Stout
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It can be difficult to find books that interest 5th grade students and it can be even more difficult to find books with an inspirational message. Author Glenn Stout has met both goals with his book in the Good Sport series titled Against All Odds.
Fifth grade readers will benefit from the author’s take on being a good athlete even when the going gets rough. He outlines the difficulties that five different athletes including Tim Tebow have had to overcome to be great. It is not only an honest depiction of the challenges it takes to become good at the sport but the author also demonstrates the faith, hard work, and road blocks that each has faced when dealing with the trying to be a winner.
The language is clear and appropriate for the fifth grade reader. The book offers an appendix with the stats for each player in the book and a resource section to encourage the fifth grade reader to investigate more about the sport or the athlete which is helpful to teachers who want to instruct on research, writing, or challenge the students to learn more.
Against All Odds is current and the athletes in the book are recognized by this age group as great. The book appeals particularly to fifth grade boys which can be a challenging group to keep engaged in reading making this book a wonderful addition to the classroom library.
- Title: Good Sport: Against All Odds
- Author: Glenn Stout
- Publisher: Sandpiper: Houghton Miffin Harcourt
- ISBN: 978-0-547-88734-0
- Reviewer: Terri Forehand
- Paperback: 122 including Appendix
- Lexile: 1130
Writtten by Patrick G. Cain
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This book splendidly fulfills its responsibility to its young readers. Skateboarding street can be a dangerous sport, as the author states in the very first chapter, and in an extensive sidebar, he emphasizes the safety precautions that are necessary. “Even though you might not always see the skaters on TV wearing helmets and pads, this safety gear is very important to avoid injury.”
The target readership is pre-teens and teens – grades 4-8 – an age when requests to ‘wear a helmet’ may not always go down smoothly. Wisely, the author backs up his precautions with irrefutable reasons, “For a pro, a bad fall can mean the end of a career. For an amateur skater, a rough fall can mean giving up a favorite hobby.” Skateboarding Street can be a good read aloud with interesting discussions on the incredible tricks that the skaters can perform and the need for safety.
The story traces the development of the sport from its early days to its acceptance as a mainstream sport. It profiles the heroes, both past and present, boys and girls. The history of skateboading is outlined, along with a two page spread showing the elements of today’s skateboard. We also learn that the right safety gear should include a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads and wrist guards.
The last chapter talks about going pro. “Most skaters will never have the opportunity to go pro.” However, most skaters skate for enjoyment, and there are plenty of local competitions to participate in. Many skaters videotape their moves and post the video online.
Skateboarding Street contains many action shots that give a feel for fluid movement and tricks of the sport. A definite recommendation for all libraries and reading lists.
- Title: Skateboarding Street
- Author: Patrick G. Cain
- Publisher: Lerner Publications Company
- Reviewer: Anjali Amit
- Hardback: 32 pages
- ISBN: 978-1-4677-0749-7
- Genre: Non-Fiction/Sports
- Lexile Score: 950