Keena Ford and the Second-Grade Mix-Up

by Melissa Thomson (2008)

It’s a very simple story – but a perfect little gem. Keena Ford and the Second-Grade Mix-Up should be known – and will be loved – by all.

She’s just a young, curious girl – her parents are separated – navigating the 2nd grade. Plenty of books and series start with a simple premise like that, but none of the titles we know trading here is as brisk and lively, as fun and as impish, as Keena Ford. Little Keena is fun and sassy, honest and brave, innocent and intrepid. She makes an honest mistake of omission that sets the train of the plot in motion and resolution.

But that’s what Keena Ford and the Second-Grade Mix-Up is about and makes it tick. When your students and families see the world – and the simple, not grandiose challenges in front of her – from Keena’s eyes, they will remember 2nd grade, remember what it is to mean well but be unsure, remember what it is to be driven by simple pleasures (like chocolate cake!). And they’ll wish they could spend more time with Keena.

(Fortunately, there are sequels: Keena Ford and the Second-Grade Field Trip and Keena Ford and the Secret Journal Mix-Up. Just the ticket to satisfy your families once they’re bitten and crave the ‘habit’ of reading aloud together as a family.)

Keena Ford and the Second-Grade Mix-Up is one of the shortest titles we’ve ever offered – 102 brisk pages. But that’s on purpose. We know there are some schools that need to enter One School, One Book and make sure their challenged families can join in, too. If you are looking for a title to invite in your reluctant or challenged families, Keena Ford is the answer. She will speak to all families – black, white, urban, suburban. She will inspire all children. Most importantly, she will empower new families to participate in One School, One Book. She will help us truly create a culture of literacy in every home. And will help all schools to establish life-long readers.

Help your families get there by discovering and sharing Keena Ford!