Photograph of Author Chris Crutcher © 2014 David Rzeszotarski

The NCBLA’s 2014 conference In Search of Wonder: Common Core & More shared information demonstrating how young people’s literature, both fiction and nonfiction, can be used in the classroom to augment textbooks, enriching and expanding young people’s knowledge base. Educators, librarians, and parents, you will find the educational support materials we developed for the conference —booklists, author interviews, resource guides, lesson plans, and more—pertinent and helpful to your educational goals and needs, even if you did not attend the conference. Of special note: be sure to check out the list of Common Core book recommendations categorized by academic disciplines.

We hope these materials will inspire you to introduce more quality literature in the classroom and the library across all academic disciplines!

Click on a category or scroll down to discover all our In Search of Wonder resources.

Lists of Common Core Book Recommendations by Academic Discipline
In Search of Wonder Education Resource Guides for Authors
Chris Crutcher, Nikki Grimes, Steven Kellogg, Katherine Paterson, and
Tanya Lee Stone

In Search of Wonder Author Video Interviews
In Search of Wonder Authors’ Publications and Common Core Connections

Lists of Common Core Book Recommendations
by Academic Discipline

The specialists in literature for young people who served on our In Search of Wonder discussion panel have recommended both fiction and nonfiction book titles—new titles and classic titles!—that represent some of the best books for young people in twelve different categories:

Earth Science, Geology, and Plant Life
Humans and Animals, Biology and Health
Chemistry and Physics
Computer Science, Engineering, and Technology
American History
World History
American Literature
World Literature
Visual Arts
Performing Arts

The entry for each book in the book lists includes a recommended age range and summary to help you decide which books will meet your needs, plus other basic information you need to find the book at your library or bookstore. Just like our education resource guides, each list has been published as an easy-to-print file. Just click the list title to download and print it.

In Search of Wonder Education Resource Guides
by Author

For each of the five participating authors, we have developed an education resource guide that provides engaging activities and discussion questions all linked to particular Common Core standards and designed to demonstrate how you can use each author’s books in your classroom or library. We have published all of these guides in an easy-to-print format so you can print and store these materials in binders for quick access.

Education Resource Guide for Chris Crutcher
Education Resource Guide for Nikki Grimes
Education Resource Guide for Steven Kellogg
Education Resource Guide for Katherine Paterson
Education Resource Guide for Tanya Lee Stone

In Search of Wonder Author Video Interviews

Each of the authors who participated in the In Search of Wonder event was interviewed and video recorded by students. The NCBLA thanks the talented students of Perry Local Schools for all their work in planning and producing these author interviews, which discuss such diverse topics as inspiration, the power of poetry, and censorship.

Video Interview with Chris Crutcher

Video Interview with Nikki Grimes

Video Interview with Steven Kellogg

Video Interview with Katherine Paterson

Video Interview with Tanya Lee Stone

In Search of Wonder Authors’ Publications
and Common Core Connections

The following lists brief information about each of the participating authors, plus it includes an extensive list of each author’s publications organized by Common Core connections.

Chris Crutcher

Chris Crutcher writes fiction honestly about real issues facing teenagers today: making it through school, competing in sports, handling rejection and failure, and dealing with parents. Learn more about Crutcher and his books on his website

Literature: Realistic Fiction
Angry Management
Athletic Shorts: Six Short Stories
Chinese Handcuffs
The Crazy Horse Electric Game
Period 8
Running Loose
The Sledding Hill
Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes
Whale Talk

History and Social Studies Fiction
Athletic Shorts: Six Short Stories
The Crazy Horse Electric Game
The Sledding Hill
Whale Talk

King of the Mild Frontier: An Ill-Advised Autobiography

Nikki Grimes

Nikki Grimes writes fiction and nonfiction books—including poetry, prose, and picture books—for young people in elementary and middle school. Learn more about Grimes and her books on her website

Literature: Realistic Fiction
A Day With Daddy
The Road to Paris
Jazmin’s Notebook

Literature: Chapter Books
Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel
Rich: A Dyamonde Daniel Book
Almost Zero: A Dyamonde Daniel Book
Halfway to Perfect: A Dyamonde Daniel Book

Literature: Fiction Stories in Verse
Meet Danitra Brown
Danitra Brown, Class Clown
My Man Blue
Aneesa Lee and the Weaver’s Gift (This book is out of print, but available in libraries.)
What is Goodbye?
Oh, Brother!

Literature: Novels in Verse
Bronx Masquerade
Planet Middle School
Dark Sons
A Girl Named Mister
Words With Wings

Literature: Poetry
When Gorilla Goes Walking
It’s Raining Laughter
A Dime a Dozen
Hopscotch Poems
A Pocketful of Poems
Thanks a Million

Literature: Inspirational
Come Sunday
When Daddy Prays
Thanks a Million
At Break of Day
Voices of Christmas
Under the Christmas Tree (This book is out of print, but available in libraries.)

History and Social Studies
Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope
Talkin’ About Bessie

Steven Kellogg

Steven Kellogg writes and illustrates fiction and nonfiction picture books for pre-Kindergarten and elementary school children. Learn more about Kellogg and his books on his website

Literature: Fiction Picture Books
The Day Jimmy’s Boa Ate the Wash
Is Your Mama a Llama?
The Island of the Skog
A Rose for Pinkerton
Pinkerton Behave
The Mysterious Tadpole
Much Bigger Than Martin
And I Love You

Literature: Fairy Tales
The Three Little Pigs
Chicken Little
Jack and the Beanstalk
The Pied Piper’s Magic
The Three Sillies

Literature: American Folklore
Pecos Bill
Paul Bunyan
Sally Ann Thunder Ann Whirlwind Crockett
Paul Bunyan
Johnny Appleseed: A Tall Tale
I Was Born About 10,000 Years Ago: A Tall Tale

Literature: Contemporary Events/Grief and Loss
Snowflakes Fall

Science Nonfiction
If You Decide to Go to the Moon

Mathematics Nonfiction
How Much is a Million?
If You Made a Million
Millions to Measure

Katherine Paterson

Katherine Paterson writes poetry, prose, and fiction—including picture books, chapter books, and novels—for young people in elementary and middle school. Learn more about Paterson and her books on her website and her Facebook page.

Literature: Fiction Classics
The Bridge to Terabithia
The Great Gilly Hopkins
Jacob Have I Loved
Preacher’s Boy
The Flip-Flop Girl
The Same Stuff as Stars

Literature: Fantasy
The Flint Heart
The Wide-Awake Princess

Literature: Folklore and Myth
The Tale of the Mandarin Ducks
The King’s Equal

Literature: Inspirational
Brother Sun, Sister Moon
The Light of the World: The Life of Jesus for Children
Images of God
Giving Thanks: Poems, Prayers, and Praise Songs of Thanksgiving
A Stubborn Sweetness and Other Stories for the Christmas Season

History: Historical Fiction
The Sign of the Chrysanthemum
The Master Puppeteer
Park’s Quest
Jip: His Story
Bread and Roses, Too
Day of the Pelican

Tanya Lee Stone

Tanya Lee Stone writes fiction and nonfiction for young people in elementary, middle, and high school. Learn more about Stone and her books on her website

Literature: YA Fiction
A Bad Boy Can Be Good for a Girl
Dear Bully (Anthology)
Starry-Eyed (Anthology)

History and Social Studies Nonfiction
Courage Has No Color: The True Story of the Triple Nickles
Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream
The Good, the Bad, and the Barbie
Up Close: Ella Fitzgerald
Amelia Earhart
Abraham Lincoln
Made in the USA
Ilan Ramon: Israel’s First Astronaut
Laura Ingalls Wilder
America’s Top 10
Making of America
Who Says Women Can’t Be Doctors?: The Story of Elizabeth Blackwell (picture book)
Sandy’s Circus: A Story about Alexander Calder
Elizabeth Leads the Way: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the Right to Vote
The House that Jane Built (about Jane Addams)

Science Nonfiction
Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream
Blastoff Series: Mars; Venus; and Saturn
Recycle This Book
Living in a World of Series: Blue; Green; Brown; and White
Wild America Series: Beaver; Crow; Rabbit; Mouse; Deer; Raccoon; Earthworm; Turtle; Opossum; Skunk; Squirrel; and Toad.