Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers / Edition 3

Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers / Edition 3

by Judith Wynn Halsted
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Pub. Date:
Great Potential Press, Inc.


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Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers / Edition 3

This book contains an annotated bibliography of more than 300 books recommended for gifted students, as well as some good advice about the importance of reading and how to encourage it in children and adolescents. Because gifted students often intensely identify with characters in books, it is important for them to read well-written books with complex characters and plots. When the characters in the books face some of the same issues and concerns that the gifted reader is facing, the child gains new insights into his or her own problems or worries, as well as potential ways of handling them. In this way, good books can provide bridges to new insights, better communication of feelings and values, and more thoughtful decision making. Well-selected books also can help gifted children learn new social and emotional skills, while at the same time fostering intellectual and creative development.

Topics include:

  • Intellectual and emotional needs of children of high ability
  • Typical and advanced reading patterns for children in grades K-12
  • How parents and teachers can provide reading guidance and discuss books with young readers
  • A well-indexed annotated bibliography of more than 300 books for readers of all ages, carefully selected to promote intellectual and emotional development
  • Books that deal with themes of achievement, aloneness, arrogance, developing imagination, intensity, introversion, perfectionism, relationships with others, sensitivity, and resilience
  • An extensive index with suggested titles for each theme, in addition to indexes by book title and author

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780910707961
Publisher: Great Potential Press, Inc.
Publication date: 09/01/2009
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 594
Sales rank: 725,058
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Judith Wynn Halsted has retired from a long career in education. After majoring in English and earning a teaching certificate, she completed a Master's degree in Library Science at the University of Illinois. When her family moved to Traverse City, Michigan, she became the librarian at The Pathfinder School. While at Pathfinder, she developed and directed a program for gifted students. Her interest in the social and emotional development of gifted children rose from her experiences as the parent of two gifted sons. At the suggestion of Dr. James T. Webb, she combined the twin threads of her career path-gifted children and books-and published the first edition of her book, Guiding Gifted Readers, in 1988.

In 1985, Halsted founded Halsted Academic Advisors. Later, she became a Certified Educational Planner, helping families with gifted children of all ages make educational decisions, and guiding high school students through the college selection and application process. Updated editions of her book, titled Some of My Best Friends Are Books, were published in 1994, 2002, and 2009. She has written for journals in the field of gifted education, authoring the Judith Halsted on Books column in 2e: Twice Exceptional Newsletter.

Halsted's free time, too, has focused on books and libraries. Her work as co-chair of a grass-roots group, Citizens for Libraries, resulted in a new district library, which in 1998 replaced the Carnegie library building that had served Traverse City since 1903. In retirement, she enjoys having more time for reading and music, as well as enjoying northern Michigan outdoors in all seasons, and most of all, her family-which now includes four grandchildren who keep alive her interest in children's books.

Table of Contents



Challenges as They Grow

Social and Emotional Needs

How Books Can Help

Chapter 1The Heart of the Child: Emotional Development

Chapter 2The Mind of the Child: Intellectual Development

Chapter 3Reading Guidance

Chapter 4Emotional Development through Books

Chapter 5Intellectual Development through Books

Chapter 6Choosing Books that Challenge

Chapter 7All the Wealth: Kinds of Literature

Chapter 8. Annotated Bibliography



Index of Authors, Titles, and Subjects (Chapters 1-7)

Index of Categories for Annotated Bibliography (Chapter 8)

Index of Authors for Annotated Bibliography (Chapter 8)

Index of Titles for Annotated Bibliography (Chapter 8)

About the Author

What People are Saying About This

Jim Delisle

"Halsted describes how books can be used to meet both the emotional and intellectual needs of high ability youngsters. Her extensive selection of wonderful books is well thought out and practical."--(Jim Delisle, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Education (Retired), Kent State University)

Lisa Rivero

"So much more than a 'what to read' when list, this book explains emotional and intellectual needs of both young and older readers, shows how to organize book discussions, and offers hundreds of ideas for using books to address issues of identity, difference, growth, and intellectual passions."--(Lisa Rivero, M.A., Author of Creative Home Schooling: A Resource Guide for Smart Families)


Books for children are plentiful, and most bright children are good readers who find them easily. It may seem, then, that planning to use books is unnecessary--but surprisingly often, where there is no planning, even good readers are not introduced to the pleasures of leisure reading. Teachers struggling to meet basic requirements have little time to suggest and follow through with extra reading for brighter students. Parents may find it difficult to keep track of what their children are reading. Guiding children's reading appears to be one more unaffordable luxury in an increasingly busy world.

Yet books offer compelling advantages to parents and teachers who want to nurture the minds and hearts of highly able children. Excellent books are abundant, inexpensive, and are accessible sources of challenge and understanding. In fact, books should be the first choice of enrichment for these bright youngsters.

Merely providing books is not enough, however. A knowledge of gifted children, discussion techniques, and children's literature is necessary to make maximum use of the benefits books offer. By filling the gaps in their knowledge, parents, teachers, counselors, and librarians can bring gifted children and books together more effectively. In so doing, they can help gifted children be themselves--comfortable in their present world and poised to grow into happy, productive adults.

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Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
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MomsChoiceAwards More than 1 year ago
Some of My Best Friends Are Books is a recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. The Mom's Choice Awards® honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of PBS's Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, New York Times best-selling Author; LeAnn Thieman, motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books; and Tara Paterson, Certified Parent Coach and founder of the Mom's Choice Awards. Parents and educators look for the Mom's Choice Awards seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago