The Secret School by Avi
This book is recommended for advanced readers in third grade and up
Genre: Historical Fiction
It's 1925 and Ida Bidson is hoping to graduate from eighth grade in her one-room schoolhouse, so that she can become a teacher. But when her teacher must leave, no one will hire a replacement. The students hatch a plan for Ida to be the new teacher, but she is only fourteen. Ida will have to teach her friends, study her own work, keep up with her chores at home.
In many ways, this book is a shorter version of what you might expect from Laura Ingalls Wilder's Farmer Boy, without all the descriptions of food, livestock, and house construction. This is an interesting glimpse at the technology of the time. Even though the setting is different from many modern readers' experiences, the story is accessible. Students will likely enjoy reading about Ida's persistence, and the fact that the children are in charge has undeniable appeal.
Book Poll: The Secret School