CurriConnects Book List - Taking Care of Me

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Taking Care of Me
Encourage students to discover healthy habits and personal wellness as they enjoy a good book. This collection of mostly fiction offerings includes books about eating healthy, staying healthy, fitness, wellness, and healthy approaches to sports. There is nothing like a positive story to elevate our aspirations for ourselves. This list is especially deep in offerings for upper elementary and middle school students.

Preschool and Picture Books

Bear Wants More - Karma Wilson, (978-0689845093) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 500, ESL level: 2
Bear's long nap has resulted in great hunger, so he eats and eats along his walk through the woods, but he is still hungry!

Bunny Eats Lunch - Michael Dahl, (978-1406226683) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 520, ESL level: 2
Although the little rabbit in this book loves to chew, his strange habit of eating all his vegetables together creates interest in each veggie.

Even Aliens Need Snacks - Matthew McElligott, (978-0802723987) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 450, ESL level: 2
One enterprising chef creates amazingly yucky snacks for his alien clients!

Feast for Ten - Cathryn Falwell, (978-0547064314) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
This counting book shows how families can shop and cook healthy foods together.

Finklehopper Frog - Irene Livingston, (978-1582462349) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 550, ESL level: 2 - 3
Can Finklehopper Frog really win a race with his non-conformist running style and outlandish exersize clothing?

Froggy Goes to the Doctor - Jonathan London, (978-0670035786) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, Lexile: 280, ESL level: 1
Froggy dreads the doctor visit, but his doctor dreads the frog's next visit!

From Head to Toe - Eric Carle, (978-0061119729) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 80, ESL level: 1
This book encourages readers to follow the exercise movements by showing animals and children from all over the world exercising in various ways.

Get Moving with Elmo - Joseph Mathieu, (978-0307976666) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
Have fun trying the various exercises Elmo does to see if you can have as much fun as he does while exercising.

Happy, Heathy Ajay! - Stuart Murphy, (978-1580894708) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 500, ESL level: 2
Ajay finds he has to change his habits and eating so he can feel better and interact with his buddies.

Healthy Food for Dylan - Sarah Duchess of York, (978-1402774003) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2
Dylan's cousin helps improve his palate when she shows him how to prepare healthy foods in a delicious manner.

How Are You Peeling? - Saxton Freymann, (978-0439598415) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 1 - 2
A trip to the grocery reveals lots of vegetables and each vegetable seems to show a certain mood.

I Will Never Not Eat a Tomato - Lauren Child, (978-0763621803) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 370, ESL level: 2
Lola's brother helps her to eat her vegetables when he helps her use her imagination to see that potatoes are really fluffy clouds and carrots are Jupiter's twiglets.

IQ Gets Fit - Mary Ann Fraser, (978-0802795588) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 700, ESL level: 4
I.Q., the class mouse, wants to win the top award for physical fitness during the school's Fitness Challenge.

Jake Goes Peanuts - Michael Wright, (978-0312549671) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
Jake's parents make everything from peanut butter in an attempt to get him to eat something else.

Just Going to the Dentist - Mayer Mercer, (978-0307125835) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 380, ESL level: 2
Little Critter's first visit to the dentist turns out to be just OK.

Let's Get Cleany-Clean - Jean McElroy, (978-1416990994) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 540, ESL level: 2 - 3
Washing hands with plenty of soap turns out to be a good way for Brobee and friends to keep germs away.

Lunch - Denise Fleming, (978-0805046465) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 40, ESL level: 2
A little mouse enjoys a delicious lunch including foods of many different colors.

My Daddy is a Pretzel - Baron Baptiste, (978-1846868993) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2
One young child's father has accomplishments different from other children's parents; his father can create amazing yoga poses

Pinkalicious - Victoria Kann, (978-0060776398) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 380, ESL level: 2
Could it be that this little girl turns pink because she eats too many pink cupcakes?

The Sandwich Swap - Queen Rania, (978-1423124849) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 630, ESL level: 3
Lily and Salma's friendship increases after their feuding leads to their exchanging culturally-different sandwichs; they enjoy trying each other's country's cooking.

Tacky and the Winter Games - Helen Lester, (978-0618956746) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 530, ESL level: 3
Tacky almost thwarts his team's try at the Winter Games with his goofy behavior.

Willy the Wimp - Anthony Browne, (978-1406318746) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 300, ESL level: 2
To combat a local gang's ribbing, Willy starts a fitness regime, and it works!

Yoko - Rosemary Wells, (978-1423119838) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 350, ESL level: 2
Yoko's sushi lunch is new to many of her classmates, but their mocking attitudes change when one of them samples the delicious treat.

Early Elementary Books

The Luck of the Loch Ness Monster - Alice Flaherty, (978-0618556441) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 930, ESL level: 4
A young girl learns a lot about the results of her picky eating when an ordinary worm turns into a monster.

The Belly Book - Joe Harris, (978-0375843402) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
Learn about the care and feeding of bellies in this humorous rhyming book.

The Berenstain Bears and Too Much Junk Food - Stan Berenstain, (978-0394872179) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 690, ESL level: 2
Mama Bear tries to educate her children about the dangers of junk food.

The Berenstain Bears Go to the Doctor - Berenstain Stan, (978-0394848358) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 500, ESL level: 2
The Berenstain Bears feel nervous about their first checkup, but Dr. Grizzly takes good care of them.

Bread and Jam for Frances - Russell Hoban, (978-0060838003) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 490, ESL level: 2
Frances does get tired of eating just bread and jam when her parents agree to her whim.

The Great Shape Up - Eleanor May , (978-1575652481) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-3, ESL level: 3 - 4
Jay tries crazy diets to get back in shape after he has recovered from a broken ankle, but his sister finds better ways to help him return to good health.

The Happiest Tree - Uma Krishnaswami, (978-1600603600) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, ESL level: 2
Meena's confidence increases as she learns yoga and becomes less awkward.

Henry's Heart - Charise Mericle Harper, (978-0805089899) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 420, ESL level: 2 - 3
Henry notices his heart beats faster when he sees a certain puppy, the same as when he exercizes, but his father does not want to buy it for him.

Max Goes to the Doctor - Adria Klein, (978-1404836860) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 260, ESL level: 2
Max's doctor has great news for him at his annual physical.

Miss Fox's Class Goes Green - Eileen Spinelli, (978-0807551660) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 470, ESL level: 2
Miss Fox's students learn how to preserve a clean environment both at school and at home helping themselves become more responsible citizens and keeping themselves healthier.

Mr. Putter & Tabby Run the Race - Cynthia Rylant, (152-060693) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 620, ESL level: 3 - 4
Mr. Putter, a senior citizen, trains to win a senior marathon.

Mrs. Fox's Class Shapes Up - Eileen Spinelli, (978-0807551714) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 500, ESL level: 2 - 3
Miss Fox's class does better on Field Day after they learn about healthy eating and living habits.

Owen Foote, Second Grade Strongman - Stephanie Greene, (978-0618130542) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 420, ESL level: 3
Owen's overly small size and his friend Joseph's bulk cause both of them to be teased and possibly mocked by the school nurse.

Rotten Ralph Feels Rotten - Jack Gantos, (978-0374363574) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 520, ESL level: 2 - 3
Rotten Ralph's bad experience with eating garbage leads him to think more of Sarah's fresher cat food.

School Lunch - True Kelley, (978-0823418947) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 650, ESL level: 2 - 3
Lincoln School's cook is missed when she goes off on a much needed vacation, so the children and school workers write her letters pleading for her return.

Stink and the Ultimate Thumb-wrestling Smackdown - Megan McDonald, (978-1469218762) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-4, Lexile: 500, ESL level: 3
Stink Moody outsmarts his parents' requirement that he improve his physical education grade by joining a team; he becomes a thumb wrestler.

Sweet Tooth - Margie Palatini, (978-0689851599) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 390, ESL level: 2 - 3
Stewart's sweet tooth tries to overpower his food choices, but Stewart tries eating more healthy food and taking control of his diet.

Tales for Very Picky Eaters - Josh Schneider, (978-0547149561) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 500, ESL level: 2
One father's approach to his son's dislike of many foods is to tell wild and crazy stories in an attempt to get him to eat.

Upper Elementary to Middle School Books

All You Can Be: Dream It Draw It, Become It! - Curtis Granderson, (160-0782477) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, Lexile: 790, ESL level: 3 - 4
The author, a Major League Baseball Player, urges children to develop positive attributes like indiviuality, leadership, and education.

The Bald-Headed Princess - Maribeth Ditmars, (978-1433807374) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-7, ESL level: 4
Izzie relies on her parents, friends, jokes, and courage to help her through her treatment for leukemia

Brendan Buckley's Sixth-Grade Experiment - Sundee Frazier, (978-0375989490) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-7, ESL level: 4
Brendan keeps busy with his new friends, pets,science fair projects and his Tae Kwon Do practices.

Close Encounters of a Third-World Kind - Jennifer Stewart, (294-0033284146) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-7, Lexile: 700, ESL level: 4
Annie makes friends and learns a lot about encouraging good health care to the Nepalese she meets when she goes with her father on a medical mission to Asia.

Double Twist - Donna King, (978-0753460238) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-9, Lexile: 660, ESL level: 3
Laura frantically searches for a new skating partner when her partner Patric injures himself while practicing.

Fat Camp Commandos - Daniel Pinkwater, (978-0439155281) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-7, Lexile: 770, ESL level: 3 - 4
Ralph and his friends escape fat camp when they realize it is not what it seems in this satirical approach to weight loss.

Float and Sting!: One Round with Muhammad Ali - Davis Miller, (978-1434215789) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-7, Lexile: 740, ESL level: 3
Davis works out frantically so he can box like his hero, Muhammad Ali.

Free the Worms! - Nancy Krulik, (978-0448446752) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-6, Lexile: 530, ESL level: 2 - 3
Katie tries to impose her vegetarianism on Slinky the Snake, but when magic changes her into a snake, she learns about their need for other types of foods.

The Giant-Slayer - Iain Lawrence, (385-733763) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-12, Lexile: 700, ESL level: 4
A young girl immobilized with polio learns that she can use her imagination to create wonderful tales and make her life bearable; her technique helps other patients in similar situations.

How to Eat Fried Worms - Thomas Rockwell, (978-0440421856) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-7, Lexile: 650, ESL level: 2 - 3
Two friends set out to find how they can make it through a meal of worms.

Jelly Belly - Robert Kimmel Smith, (978-0440442073) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 680, ESL level: 3
Ned's trip to "fat" camp was unsuccessful, so he must vamp up his motivation and try to lose weight on his own at home, despite his indulgent grandmother's attempts at sabotage.

Makeovers by Marcia - Claudia Mills, (978-0374346546) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-8, Lexile: 760, ESL level: 3 - 4
Marcia's trivial concerns about beauty and boyfriends lessen when her work doing makeovers in a home for the elderly cause her to ponder the meaning of real beauty.

Mimi's Village - Katie Smith Milway, (978-1554537228) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-6, ESL level: 3
After Mimi's sister gets sick, Mimi learns the village must provide cleaner water for all members in this book about rural Kenya.

Mrs. LaGrange is Strange - Dan Gutman, (978-0060822231) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, Lexile: 650, ESL level: 2 - 3
Children at the Ella Mentry School are puzzled by the new school cook who sends them messages in food and tries to promote healthy eating.

Ms. Leakey is Freaky! - Dan Gutman, (978-0061704024) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 550, ESL level: 3
The new health teacher wants students to exercise and eat better.

My Big Fat Secret - Lynn Schechter, (978-1433805400) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-6, Lexile: 830, ESL level: 3 - 4
Jenna's emails with her cousin detail the causes for her overeating and her attempts to take control.

My Secret Life as a Ping-Pong Wizard - Henry Winkler, (978-0448437491) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-6, Lexile: 760, ESL level: 3 - 4
Hank Zipzer's unexpected prowess at ping-pong is a secret he wants to keep from his ridiculing classmates.

Run for It - Matt Christopher, (978-0316349147) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-7, ESL level: 3
An overly heavy teen boy uses his newfound motivation to get in shape so he can participate in a run to help those with cancer.

Snowboard Champ - Matt Christopher, (978-0316796439) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 690, ESL level: 3
Matt faces an unexpected snowboarding rival at a new school when he moves to live with his uncle.

The Summer I Lost It - Natalie Kath, (978-1434233165) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-9, Lexile: 620, ESL level: 3
Kat hopes her determination to exercise and lose weight one summer pays off.

Total Offence - Robert Rayner, (978-1552776971) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-8, Lexile: 740, ESL level: 3
Toby and Maddie learn they must alter their normal eating of junk food to meet their soccer coach's challenge as part of a getting in shape regimen.

Travel Team - Mike Lupica, (978-0142404621) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-12, Lexile: 940, ESL level: 4
Although Danny does not seem to be following in his award winning father's basketball prowess, he begins his own team after being rejected from the team his father had starred on.

Middle School to Young Adult Books

Accidental Love - Gary Soto, (978-0152061135) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 780, ESL level: 4
Although Marissa's crush is a nerd, she uses her desire to have a boyfriend to motivate herself to improve her behavior and lose weight.

Big Mouth - Deborah Halverson, (978-0385733946) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 740, ESL level: 3 - 4
Sherman's goal of winning at competitive eating begins to interfere with his friendships and his ability to enjoy life.

Boys, Bears, and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots - Abby McDonald, (978-0763643829) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 740, ESL level: 4
Jenna is surprised to find that not all rural residents in her summer retreat agree with her vegetarian and environmental principles.

Breathless - Pam Withers, (978-1551434803) , Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 610, ESL level: 4
Beverly's extreme diet regimen gets in the way of her scuba diving.

Cold Hands, Warm Heart - Jill Wolfson, (978-0805082821) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-12, Lexile: 760, ESL level: 4
After Tyler's parents agree to donate their daughter's organs after an unfortunate accident, he corresponds with some of the recipients, including a young woman who received the sister's heart.

Cracked - Michele Bossley, (Ê978-1551437002) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 550, ESL level: 3
A bobsled team must search for those responsible for sabotaging their sled at a key time in their competition.

Mates, Dates, and Chocolate Cheats - Cathy Hopkins, (978-1442430815) , Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 750, ESL level: 4
Izzie's post-hoilday weight gain threatens her self-confidence, but her selection to be on TV as part of a teen panel boosts her ego.

The Melting of Maggie Bean - Tricia Rayburn, (978-1416933489) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-8, Lexile: 1010, ESL level: 4
Maggie's academic determination changes when she joins the school swim team and has a chance to get into better shape.

No Easy Race - Katherine Hengel, (978-1616512774) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 10, ESL level: 1
Victor's hopes for becoming homecoming king and making the track team are dampened by racism he encounters at school.

Oh. My. Gods. - Tera Lynn Childs, (978-0142414200) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 750, ESL level: 4
Phoebe's track and field prowess pays off after she moves with her mother to a Greek island and discovers her new classmates and teammates resemble real Greek gods and compete as the gods did during the pre-Olympic times.

One Fat Summer - Robert Lipsyte, (978-0064470735) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 670, ESL level: 4
After Robert gets a job doing yard work for a doctor in town, he notices his weight begins to decrease and his self-esteem begins to rise!

Prism - Faye Kellerman, (978-0061687242) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 510, ESL level: 4
After three high school friends fall into a parallel universe following an accident, they experience what life would be like in a place with no health care or medicine.

Second Star to the Right - Deborah Hautzig, (Ê978-0141305806) , Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 590, ESL level: 3
Leslie's weight loss does not result in the perfect body she is striving for, but she has a difficult time admitting she needs psychological help.

Shrink to Fit - Dona Sarkar, (978-0373830954) , Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 580, ESL level: 4
Leah, a high school basketball queen, finds that her desired weight loss turns up some negative factors.

Stuffed - Eric Walters, (978-1551435008) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 680, ESL level: 3
A fast food chain's threat to sue Ian after he starts a boycott of what he believes are there unhealthy foods results in an even greater determination on his part to improve people's eating habits.

This Thing Called the Future - J.L. Powers, (978-1933693958) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, ESL level: 4
Khosi and her grandmother try the medical profession as well as traditional healers to help their mother recover from her wasting disease.