If you have a gifted, twice-exceptional, or advanced reader, this episode is for you. Today I’m chatting with Colleen Kessler of Raising Lifelong Leaners. A gifted specialist and mother of her own gifted and twice-exceptional kids, Colleen understands the challenges of connecting advanced readers with books…

… and the challenges that arise when your advanced reader can read anything, but isn’t emotionally ready to have free reign at the library.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  • what to do when your kids can read “older” books, when you know they aren’t ready for the content
  • Book recommendations that feature gifted or twice-exceptional kids
  • The answer to whether your child can read too much (we know… it sounds like a good problem to have, but it can be a struggle!)

I also answer two listener questions about finding books for sensitive kids, and great book series for young, voracious readers.

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Listener Guide

Use the time stamps below to skip to any part of the podcast:

2:56Book suggestions for sensitive readers
6:58Recommendations for young, voracious readers
9:11Graphic novel ideas
10:53Welcome Colleen!
12:25You don’t need to ‘move up’
13:37On not pre-reading
15:37Raising discerning readers
18:22Strewing books
19:49Should advanced readers read easy books?
23:31Recommendations for gifted and twice-exceptional kids
25:03Biographies and non-fiction
26:24Can kids read too much?
32:08My Best Friends Are Books
34:1oLet the kids speak

Links from this episode:

Quotes to remember:

It’s our job to teach discernment. It’s our job to help our kids know what their values and morals are, and to help them see within a book if it’s going to be something that’s going to feed them, or that it’s something they might want to put aside.” – Colleen Kessler

“We know that kids become faster, stronger readers when they read a lot … so, sticking with books that are easy for them isn’t a cop-out.” – Sarah Mackenzie

Books from this episode:

Episode 149
Matilda

Matilda

*Description from Amazon: “The Trunchbull” is no match for Matilda!Matilda is a sweet, exceptional young girl, but her parents think she's just a nuisance. She expects school to be different but there she has to face Miss Trunchbull, a kid-hating terror of a headmistress. When Matilda is attacked by the Trunchbull she su...

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The Relatives Came

The Relatives Came

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

In a rainbow-colored station wagon that smelled like a real car, the relatives came. When they arrived, they hugged and hugged from the kitchen to the front room. All summer they tended the garden and ate up all the strawberries and melons. They plucked banjos and strummed guitars. When they finally...

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
Buy from Amazon
The Boxcar Children (The Boxcar Children, No. 1) (The Boxcar Children Mysteries)

The Boxcar Children (The Boxcar Children, No. 1) (The Boxcar Children Mysteries)

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

The Aldens begin their adventure by making a home in a boxcar. Their goal is to stay together, and in the process they find a grandfather.

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
Buy from Amazon
Tumtum & Nutmeg: The Rose Cottage Tales

Tumtum & Nutmeg: The Rose Cottage Tales

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

This book will make you want to brew a pot of tea nad whip up some scones! Don't be intimidated by its size—it's surprisingly engaging for even very young listeners. Tumtum and Nutmeg are a pair of mice your kids won't easily forget.

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
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Chasing Vermeer (Scholastic Gold)

Chasing Vermeer (Scholastic Gold)

**Description from Amazon: This bewitching first novel is a puzzle, wrapped in a mystery, disguised as an adventure, and delivered as a work of art.Chasing Vermeer joins the Scholastic Gold line, which features award-winning and beloved novels. Includes exclusive bonus content!When a book of unexplainable occurences brings Pe...

More info →
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Millicent Min, Girl Genius (Millicent Min Trilogy)

Millicent Min, Girl Genius (Millicent Min Trilogy)

Author:
Series: Episodes, Episode 149

**Description from Amazon: Who would have thought being smart could be so hard (and funny)?Millicent Min is having a bad summer. Her fellow high school students hate her for setting the curve. Her fellow 11-year-olds hate her for going to high school. And her mother has arranged for her to tutor Stanford Wong, the poster boy ...

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Ungifted

Ungifted

**Description from Amazon: From #1 New York Times bestselling author Gordon Korman comes a hilarious and heartfelt novel in which one middle-school troublemaker accidentally moves into the gifted and talented program—and changes everything.For fans of Louis Sachar and Jack Gantos, this funny and touching underdog story is a...

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Schooled

Schooled

**Description from Amazon: Capricorn Cap Anderson has been homeschooled by his hippie grandmother, Rain. When Rain is injured in a fall, Cap is forced to attend the local middle school. Although he knows a lot about Zen Buddhism, nothing has prepared him for the politics of public school.

More info →
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Supergifted

Supergifted

**Description from Amazon: This funny and heartwarming sequel to Ungifted, which has become a word-of-mouth hit, cleverly sends up our ideas about intelligence, heroism, and popularity.Donovan Curtis has never been what anyone would call “gifted.” But his genius friend Noah Youkilis is actually supergifted, with one of th...

More info →
Buy from Amazon
Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers (3rd Edition)

Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers (3rd Edition)

**Description from Amazon: Good books are often good friends. Because gifted readers often intensely identify with characters, good books can provide bridges to new insights and better communication of feelings, values, and decision making, while also fostering intellectual and creative development. Now in its third edition, ...

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A Bear Called Paddington

A Bear Called Paddington

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

When Paddington Bear moves in with the Browns, life changes forever. This classic series of tales about a well-intentioned bear who finds himself in many unfortunate predicaments delights young readers. Especially wonderful if you can read it with a British accent. ;)

More info →
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A Wrinkle in Time (Time Quintet)

A Wrinkle in Time (Time Quintet)

FROM SARAH:

Meg and her brother Charles are viewed as unintelligent, especially compared to their brilliant parents, one of whom has disappeared. Did he really leave their family, or was it perhaps a wrinkle in time? The 1963 Newberry Award winner. Get our free reading guide to go with it.

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger.

More info →
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The Mysterious Benedict Society

The Mysterious Benedict Society

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

"Are you a gifted child looking for special opportunities?" When Reynie Muldoon answers an ad looking for gifted children, he soon meets fascinating friends and finds himself on an adventure that will change his life... and quite possibly the world. First in a fantastic series.

More info →
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Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective

Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

Leroy Brown, boy detective, not only solves his own cases -- he also occasionally helps out his policeman dad with the biggest mysteries in Idaville.

More info →
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Dinosaurs Before Dark (Magic Tree House, No. 1)

Dinosaurs Before Dark (Magic Tree House, No. 1)

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

‘The treehouse started to spin … and then everything was still. Absolutely still.’ Jack and Annie have so many adventures together! A gentle introduction to history, kids will love the non-fiction companion books too!

More info →
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The Absent Author (A to Z Mysteries)

The Absent Author (A to Z Mysteries)

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

Beginning with The Absent Author, Dink, Josh and Ruth Rose band together to solve an alphabetic mystery in each book.

More info →
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The Penderwicks

The Penderwicks

FROM SARAH:

One of my tippy-top recommendations... if your kids haven't met the Penderwicks yet, it's time! A summer of misadventure ensues when four sisters meet a very interesting boy (and a couple of rabbits, too!) at a summer cottage in New England. Boys and girls alike enjoy this whole series. Hear Jeanne Birdsall talk about writing this series on her episode of Read-Aloud Revival.

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

This summer the Penderwick sisters have a wonderful surprise: a holiday on the grounds of a beautiful estate called Arundel. Soon they are busy discovering the summertime magic of Arundel's sprawling gardens, treasure-filled attic, tame rabbits, and the cook who makes the best gingerbread in Massachusetts.

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
Buy from Amazon
Series of Unfortunate Events #1: The Bad Beginning Rare Edition Enhanced

Series of Unfortunate Events #1: The Bad Beginning Rare Edition Enhanced

Author:
Series: Episodes, Episode 1, Book 1
Tags: Episode 01, Episode 37

**Description from Amazon: Are you made fainthearted by death? Does fire unnerve you? Is a villain something that might crop up in future nightmares of yours? Are you thrilled by nefarious plots? Is cold porridge upsetting to you? Vicious threats? Hooks? Uncomfortable clothing?It is likely that yo...

More info →
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Hooray for Anna Hibiscus

Hooray for Anna Hibiscus

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

This is a collection of four linked stories about family life set in modern west Africa. Anna Hibiscus lives in amazing Africa with her family in a wonderful house in a beautiful garden in a big city.

More info →
Buy from Amazon

You’ll also enjoy:

📷Featured photo is from the cover of a book Colleen recommends, Some of my Best Friends are Books.