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Featured Books and Tool of the Month



Book: A Whole New Ballgame
Author: Phil Bildner
Format: PDF accessible
Barcode: 50011163

Rip and Red are best friends whose fifth-grade year is nothing like what they expected. They have a crazy new tattooed teacher named Mr. Acevedo, who doesn't believe in tests or homework and who likes off-the-wall projects, the more "off" the better. And guess who's also their new basketball coach? Mr. Acevedo! Easy-going Rip is knocked completely out of his comfort zone. And for Red, who has autism and really needs things to be exactly a certain way, the changes are even more of a struggle. But together these two make a great duo who know how to help each other and find ways to make a difference in the classroom and on the court. (

Additional Resources for A Whole New Ballgame

Middle/High School

Book: Where the Lilies Bloom
Author: Vera and Bill Cleaver
Format: PDF accessible
Barcode: 50002190

Mary Call has promised her dying father to keep her brother and sisters together forever on the mountain, and never to take any help from strangers. She is determined to keep her word. No matter what. At first, she is sure she can manage. Romey, Ima Dean, and Devola help gather herbs to sell in town; the riches of the mountains will surely keep the family clothed and fed. But then winter comes, fast and furious, and Mary Call has to learn that the land where the lilies bloom is also a cruel and unforgiving place, and it may take more than a promise to keep her family together. (

Additional Resources for Where the Lilies Bloom

Digital Tool of the Month

Tool: Natural Reader
Cost: Free (more features if you pay)
Access: Go to software and download on your computer

Natural Reader is a text to speech program that converts written text into spoken words. Once you open Natural Reader, you can drag and drop your file or click on “Open the Document” to hear the text read aloud while you follow along. The free version allows you to select from two voices, change the speed, autotrack text, search keywords, add a bookmark, zoom to make text larger or smaller, and set the margins. Students can use the features they need to access the book. The paid version of Natural Reader has additional features.

AIM-VA provides educators a way to have books converted to accessible files for students who have an Individualized Education Program (IEP). Search for books through the AIM-VA website. Books not currently found in the AIM-VA library, can be produced if requested by an AIM-VA DRM (Digital Rights Manager) in any Virginia public school division.