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Esme Raji Codell

Born: 1968 in Chicago
Pen Name: None

Connection to Illinois: Codell lives in Evanston.

Biography: Esm Raji Codell is a teacher and librarian and the author of many award-winning books for children. She worked at a children's bookstore, selling books, storytelling and organizing programs that would attract people to the stores. She began teaching after graduating form Northeastern Illinois University. In 2003 she turned to writing fiction. You can find more story-time fun and support for your child's precious preschool years at her website.

  • ''Fairly Fairy Tales'', 2014 ILLINOIS READS Book

Primary Audience(s): Adult readers; Children; Young adult readers

Esme Raji Codell on WorldCat :

Selected Titles

Diary of a fairy godmother /
ISBN: 0786809663 OCLC: 71292221

Hyperion Books for Children, New York : 2006, ©2005.

Hunky Dory is at the top of her class in charm school. She could make flowers wilt like wet spaghetti and thunder rumble like a whale's bellyache. But her interest in wishcraft over witchcraft gets her kicked out of charm school. Now she's determined to follow her heart and become a fairy godmother. But how to go about doing it? She gives a woodsman a new mustache, and grants Wolf his strange wish for a grandmother costume. Yet it all seems so unsatisfying, somehow. Finally, motivated by jealousy over her friend Rumpelstiltskin's crush on the girl in the roomful of straw, she meets the ticket to realizing her career dream -- Cinderella.

  Diary of a Fairy Godmother.
ISBN: 9781435267145 OCLC: 226360495

Paw Prints 2008.

Educating Esmé :
ISBN: 9781565129351 OCLC: 303099971

A must-read for parents, new teachers, and classroom veterans, Educating Esme is the exuberant diary of Esme Raji Codell's first year teaching in a Chicago public school. Fresh-mouthed and free-spirited, the irrepressible Madame Esme - as she prefers to be called - does the cha-cha during multiplication tables, roller-skates down the hallways, and puts on rousing performances with at-risk students in the library. Her diary opens a window into a real-life classroom from a teacher's perspective. While battling bureaucrats, gang members, abusive parents, and her own insecurities, this gifted young woman reveals what it takes to be an exceptional teacher. Heroine to thousands of parents and educators, Esme now shares more of her ingenious and yet down-to-earth approaches to the classroom in a supplementary guide to help new teachers hit the ground running. As relevant and iconoclastic as when it was first published, Educating Esme is a classic, as is Madame Esme herself. --Book Jacket.

Educating Esmé :
ISBN: 1565122798 OCLC: 47195991

"Educating Esme" is the uncensored diary of Codell's first year teaching in a Chicago public school.

Fairly fairy tales /
ISBN: 1416990860 OCLC: 324778531

Aladdin, New York : 2011.

Offers a different look at some classic stories, as a parent and child read before bedtime.

Hanukkah, shmanukkah! /
ISBN: 0786851791 OCLC: 61367050

Hyperion Books for Children, New York, N.Y. : ©2005.

In early 1900s New York City, miserly Scroogemacher, a waistcoat factory owner, is visited by the Rabbis of Hanukkah Past, Present, and Future and learns the value of carrying on Jewish tradition. Includes glossary of Yiddish terms and historical notes.

How to get your child to love reading /
ISBN: 1565123085 OCLC: 51518548

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, N.C. : ©2003.

Blending her experience as both a teacher and a parent with a passion for children's literature, Codell presents this indispensable resource for parents that puts kids on the road to reading. Includes fun-filled activities that emphasize excitement and thousands of book recommendations on a variety of subjects.

It's time for preschool!
ISBN: 9780061455186 OCLC: 746154120

Greenwillow Books, New York : ©2012.

Introduces typical activities a child might encounter at preschool.

Sahara Special /
ISBN: 0439653703 OCLC: 55730281

Scholastic Inc., New York : [2004], ©2003.

Struggling with school and her feelings since her father left, Sahara gets a fresh start with a new and unique teacher who supports her writing talents and the individuality of each of her classmates.

  Sahara Special.
ISBN: 9781435284494 OCLC: 227924264

Paw Prints 2008.

Ira Children's Book Awards, Grade 3-6-In this delightful first novel, readers meet Sahara Jones in the school hallway, where she's been pulled out of class for sessions with the Special Needs teacher. It seems that Sahara's official school file is filled with her letters to her father, who had left the family, instead of her completed assignments. Sahara is a secretive writer; she fills her journal at home, then rips out the pages and stuffs them on the public library shelves behind the 940s for someone to discover someday. At her mother's insistence, the girl is taken out of the Special Needs program but is forced to repeat fifth grade. Enter a new teacher, Madame Poitier, who encourages her class to do, to write, to be, as never before. Sahara is sweeter than Harriet the Spy, as needy and engaging as Ramona, and is sure to be a character whom children will want to read about and get to know. Codell's take on fifth graders, teachers, Special Needs students, and mothers is very funny, and underneath the humor glows real warmth and love.

Seed by seed :
ISBN: 0061455156 OCLC: 748812803

Greenwillow Books, New York : 2012.

Recounts the life of John Chapman, the legendary Johnny Appleseed.

  Sing a song of tuna fish
ISBN: 9780739345023 OCLC: 75294939

Listening Library, [New York] : 2006.

Esmé tells us about the night she and her mother became egg vigilantes against an illegally parked car; her freewheeling first school, where kids sat on sofas instead of at desks and could choose disco dancing instead of math; her dangerous neighborhood, which her father made seem friendly and wondrous; the Passover dinner when she stole a matzoh right out from under a rabbi; the awe-inspiring, life-threatening Chicago snowstorms; and lessons about love from tea-reading gypsies and Popeye cartoons.

Sing a song of tuna fish :
ISBN: 0786836520 OCLC: 70274491

Hyperion Paperbacks For Children, New York : 2006.

Biography of a little girl's life in Chicago while she is in the fifth grade.

The Basket ball /
ISBN: 1419700073 OCLC: 707968776

Abrams Books for Young Readers, New York : 2011.

After the boys won't let her join in their basketball game, Lulu decides to host a Basket Ball, where girls from all over come to participate and, with Lulu as captain, end up forming a special team.

  Vive la Paris
ISBN: 9780739364277 OCLC: 219770702

Listening Library, New York : 2008.

Paris has just come for piano lessons, not chopped-liver sandwiches or French lessons or free advice. But when old Mrs. Rosen gives her a little bit more than she can handle, it might be just what Paris needs in order to understand the bully in her brother's life--and the bullies of the world. This companion novel to the award-winning Sahara special is an affecting look at what it means to be your brother's keeper, and at how we hold on to hope when the world is more than we can handle. (Rose-colored glasses optional.).

Vive la Paris /
ISBN: 0786851252 OCLC: 180753887

Hyperion Paperbacks for Children, New York : 2007, ©2006.

Fifth-grader Paris learns some lessons about dealing with bullies of all kinds as she wonders how to stop a classmate from beating up her brother at school and as she learns about the Holocaust from her piano teacher, Mrs. Rosen.