5 Diverse Classroom Books for Older Students

girl reading book outside

As the world changes, people are becoming more aware of their surroundings. Students are getting older and becoming curious about the idea of culture, disabilities, and social standards. They are constantly trying to uncover their true self and that is not easy when you are going through it alone. Here are six diverse classroom books for older students which can help satisfy their curiosity and broaden their horizons.. 

Read more: 7 Friendly English LGBTQ+ Books To Use In Class

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan 

If you are a fan of Greek mythology, this is the perfect read for you. Rick Riordan puts a spin on the classic mythology stories into a modern-day adventure. Follow Percy Jackson, a troubled twelve-year-old who is about to discover that the Greek gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus are real. Since ancient history, the Greek gods and goddesses have come down to earth, fallen in love with humans, and had kids – demigods, half-god and half-human. Percy Jackson is one demigod, and his father is Posiden, god of the seas and one of the main three gods of Greek mythology. In other words, Percy is in more danger than ever as monsters are out to get him. How could the situation get any worse?

But it does! Percy has angered a few of the gods. Zeus, god of the sky’s, master lightning bolt has been stolen. Percy Jackson is the prime suspect, and everyone is out to get him. Now Percy and his friends only have until the summer solstice to find the true thief, return the bolt back to Zeus, and stop the storm that’s brewing. Can Percy save Mount Olympus in time? Find out in Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. If you enjoyed the first book check out the series and other greek mythology-inspired series by Rick Riordan. 

Purchase Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief here

Counting by 7’s by Holly Goldberg Solan 

Twelve-year-old genius Willow Chance is captivated by nature and diagnosed with a medical condition. Due to her condition, she finds comfort in counting by 7’s. Willow does not connect well with anyone other than her adoptive parents. That setback has never stopped her from living a happy life until now. Tragedy strikes Willow’s world as her parents, unfortunately, die in a car accident.  Willow must now search for a place where she belongs and can call home. Equally balanced with tragedy and triumph, see how one extraordinary girl overcomes grief and finds the courage to move forward. Students of all ages can connect with this heartfelt novel and learn how to cover coming grief by finding happiness around you. 

Purchase Counting by 7’s here

books with kids in them

Almost American Girl by Robin Ha

In this illustrated memoir, Robin Ha depicts her life from living with her single mother in Seoul, Korea, to moving in with her stepfamily in Huntsville, Alabama. It has always been Robin and her mom against the world. They had an inseparable bond as an only child and a single mother living in Korea. A vacation trip to visit friends in Alabama turns into a permanent stay. On top of that, Robin’s mother is now engaged, and Robin can see her world crumbling down. Her life starts to change in the blink of an eye.

 Robin starts a new school where she struggles to learn the language and keep up. She has no contact with her friends from back home and is deprived of her beloved comic books. Robin is not fitting in with her new stepfamily and is outraged at her best friend, her mother. Robin’s mother must have noticed her daughter’s disconnection because she enrolled her in a local comic drawing class. Little did her mother know it would unlock a future Robin could not imagine. 

Purchase Almost American Girl here

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter has her foot in between two worlds: the poor predominantly black neighbourhood where she lives and the fancy, mainly white prep school she attends. Her world is shattered when she witnesses the deadly shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Tragically, Khalil was unarmed. News spreads about Khalil’s death, and some call him a thug or a drug dealer.

Only Starr and her family know those are horrible lies. Starr is a key witness to the shooting, and only her family knows. Her world of prep school, a star athlete boyfriend, and rich best friends are unaware of her involvement. The pain and anger eat at Starr day by day, keeping the secret of what happened that night. Until enough is enough, it is time to take action. 

Purchase The Hate U Give here

Return to Sender by Julia Alvarez 

Due to Tyler’s father being injured in a tractor accident, Tyler and his family hire immigrant Mexican workers to save their farm from foreclosure. Eleven-year-old Tyler is more desperate than anyone to save his family’s Vermont farm. The workers Tyler’s father hired are undocumented. Tyler meets the oldest daughter Mari who is proud of her Mexican heritage. However, she also loves her life in America. If her family is caught by the authorities, they will be sent back to Mexico and live in poverty. In the beginning, Tyler and Mari were cautious of each other but soon develop a unique friendship. This newfound friendship allows both to see each other’s lives from a new perspective. Through constant fear and worry can Tyler and Mari remain friends? 

Purchase Return to Sender here

books with mail in them

The post 5 Diverse Classroom Books for Older Students appeared first on The TEFL Academy Blog.

I have been traveling and teaching ESL abroad ever since I graduated university. This life choice has taken me around the world and allowed me to experience cultures and meet people that I did not know existed.

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