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Parent picks: What fourth- and fifth-graders are reading for the holidays

Fourth and fifth grades mark a critical stage for reading skills. These parent suggestions, ranging from new titles like The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate to classics like Where the Red Fern Grows, are sure to keep your child enthralled.

By GreatSchools Staff

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The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate

by Jacqueline Kelly
Henry Holt and Co. (May 2009)
Ages 9-12, $17

She's a turn-of-the-century Texas girl, but 11-year-old Calpurnia Tate is more interested in becoming a scientist than in knitting or cooking. With the help of her grandfather, an amateur naturalist, and Charles Darwin's Origin of Species, she starts doing fieldwork. The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate is the critically acclaimed story of an outsider who has to forge her own way in the world as she discovers her unique identity.


Bottom line: A prize-winning book that explores the unconventional life of a brash young naturalist.

Comments from readers

"With the exception of 2 books, this list caters to girls. Any more suggested reads for boys?"