Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Encyclopedia Brown: Boy Detective

Encyclopedia Brown, Boy DetectiveTitle: Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective     

Author: Donald J. Sobol   

Publisher: Puffin Books

Publication Date: 1963   

Genre/Format: Mystery/Chapter Book   

Summary: After helping his dad, the chief of police, solve a mystery, Encyclopedia Brown realizes he could earn some money solving mysterious cases for kids and adults alike.   

What I Think: Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective is definitely a book series I knew existed but had never read before.  I'm so glad I decided to read it's a great mystery book I will definitely be recommending to students who like mystery.  I love that each chapter in this book is a different case that Encyclopedia Brown so expertly solves.  Even as an adult I found myself not always sure of how he was able to tell who committed the crime.  

     Students will really have to pay attention to all the details to be able to figure out the mystery.  I love that all the solutions are listed in the back of the book.  I think this book would be great for a reluctant reader who might not want to spend lots of time waiting for something to happen in a book.  These mysteries are all short and sweet.

    I'm even thinking I can use some of the mysteries in this book for critical thinking or auditory processing activities because to be able to solve the mysteries it's important to be able to listen closely to the details and really think about what the clues are.  Since I work with students for such a short amount of time, these would be a nice warm-up and I wouldn't have to continue to finish the whole book; I can pick and choose which cases to read and try to solve.   

Read Together: 3 - 12

Read Alone: 3 - 5   

Read With: The Boxcar Children (The Boxcar Children, No. 1) (Boxcar Children Mysteries) by Gertrude Chandler Warner; The Absent Author (A to Z Mysteries) and other books in the series by Ron Roy

Snatch of Text: "Everyone in the state thought that Idavilla had about the smartest policemen in the world.

     Of course, nobody knew a boy was the mastermind behind the town's police force.

     You wouldn't guess it by looking at Encyclopedia.  He looked like almost any fifth-grade boy and acted like one, too-except that he never talked about himself. 

     Mr. Brown never said a word about the advice his son gave him.  Who would believe that his best detective was only ten years old?" p. 3

Reading Strategies to Practice: Activating Background Knowledge, Asking Questions, Making Connections, Making Inferences, Looking for Details 

Writing Strategies to Practice: Expository

Writing Prompts:  After reading one of the stories, explain how Encyclopedia figured out the solution to the case!

Topics Covered: Character Traits, Friendship, Loyalty, Hard Work, Thoughtfulness 

Translated to Spanish: No, but there are two Encyclopedia Brown books that have been translated to Spanish, although they may be tricky to find: Enciclopedia Brown Aprovecha Cada Dia/Encyclopedia Brown Saves the Day (Spanish Edition) and Enciclopedia Brown Resuelve Todos Los Casos/Encyclopedia Brown Solves Them All (Spanish Edition)


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