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ESL Teacher Writes Novel for ELLs

I've gotten to the part where several students are trapped in an elevator that is taking them down into the magma chamber of a volcano with inventions they prepared for a school science class. The students--who include Tron, from Vietnam, and Amira, from Morocco--are characters in a novel, The Eight Ball Club: Ocean of Fire. M.C. Pugin-Rodas, who has a master's degree in English as a second language and taught ESL in Virginia's public schools, published it this summer for secondary English-language learners and developing readers.

There's a bit too much classroom banter in the first two chapters for my taste. My interest increased when students started describing their various inventions in science class. I'll let you teachers, who know more about the needs of your students than I do, judge whether this book belongs in your classroom. The list price for the 140-page novel is $18.95. Teachers and school districts can receive a discount through a distributor, Reading Matters.

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