The Giver - Lois Lowry, Ron Rifkin

"The Giver" is a wonderfully written story about a boy named Jonas and his life in this Utopian society where everything is in order and as close to perfection as humanly possible. As Jonas is assigned to his career in life, he quickly learns about the hidden secrets of this "perfect" society. Lois Lowery does an outstanding job of making the reader feel as though they have stepped inside Jonas' world and are experiencing everything as he does. This would be an excellent book to have fifth grade students read in a reading group or small group setting. The teacher could have students read specific sections of the book each week then allow them to discuss their thoughts within their reading group. This would also be a great text to have students use their pre-reading skills in determining what they think will happen within the story. Going back to the reading group idea, students could complete a group written compare/contrast worksheet on how Jonas changes from the beginning to the end of the story.