Family storytelling is beneficial in many ways. Research shows when these stories are told in detailed and responsive ways, children in turn, tell richer, more complete narratives later on in childhood. They also show better understanding of other people’s thoughts and emotions. These advanced narrative and emotional skills serve children well in the school years when reading complex material and navigating social situations. As well, no other materials are necessary when retelling family stories except the storyteller, the listeners and the memories. So this activity can be done anywhere and at anytime. For those that may argue illustrations are necessary for a good story, expand your thinking to include the imagery possibilities when forced to use only our imaginations. Today's theme will include books that include grandparents passing down family history to their grandchildren through storytelling and activities. What stories/activities have been passed down to you?
Clayton feels most alive when he’s with his grandfather, Cool Papa Byrd, and the band of Bluesmen—he can’t wait to join them, just as soon as he has a blues song of his own. But then the unthinkable happens. Cool Papa Byrd dies, and Clayton’s mother forbids Clayton from playing the blues. And Clayton knows that’s no way to live.
Armed with his grandfather’s brown porkpie hat and his harmonica, he runs away from home in search of the Bluesmen, hoping he can join them on the road. But on the journey that takes him through the New York City subways and to Washington Square Park, Clayton learns some things that surprise him.
Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern are off to Alabama to visit their grandmother, Big Ma, and her mother, Ma Charles. Across the way lives Ma Charles's half sister, Miss Trotter. The two half sisters haven't spoken in years. As Delphine hears about her family history, she uncovers the surprising truth that's been keeping the sisters apart. But when tragedy strikes, Delphine discovers that the bonds of family run deeper than she ever knew possible.
While her friends are spending their summers having pool parties and sleepovers, twelve-year-old Carolina — Carol — is spending hers in the middle of the New Mexico desert, helping her parents move the grandfather she’s never met into a home for people with dementia. At first, Carol avoids prickly Grandpa Serge. But as the summer wears on and the heat bears down, Carol finds herself drawn to him, fascinated by the crazy stories he tells her about a healing tree, a green-glass lake, and the bees that will bring back the rain and end a hundred years of drought. As the thin line between magic and reality starts to blur, Carol must decide for herself what is possible — and what it means to be true to her roots. Readers who dream that there’s something more out there will be enchanted by this captivating novel of family, renewal, and discovering the wonder of the world.
When we think of early intervention, we almost always think of helping students with special needs. However intervention is also necessary to quell any negative thoughts about who we are, what we look like, and our importance in society. Books are an excellent avenue to reinforce positive thoughts and affirmations with our children. Through repetition and supporting illustrations, we can teach our children very early on how awesome it is to simply be ME
Princess Truly is strong and confident, beautiful and brave, bright and brilliant. She can do anything she sets her mind to...I can fly to the moon. And dance on the stars.I can tame wild lions...And race fast cars.Brimming with warmth and color, Princess Truly's rhythmic rhyming adventures are a celebration of individuality, girl power, and diversity. Her heartfelt story is a reminder to young girls everywhere that they can achieve anything if they put their minds to it...and dream big!
Just savor these bouquets of babies--cocoa-brown, cinnamon, peaches and cream. As they grow, their clever skin does too, enjoying hugs and tickles, protecting them inside and out, and making them one of a kind. Fran Manushkin's writing and Lauren Tobia's illustrations paint a breezy and irresistible picture of the human family--and how wonderful it is to be just who you are.
TWO great books on loving yourself just as you are. With real-life photos of children and families on the cover, this can be an excellent relatable moment for kids everywhere.
: The Civil Rights Act of 1964 did not suddenly turn The United States into a utopian society. Our present day has its fair share of flaws. And although our first instincts may be to protect our children from horrifying events like what happened yesterday in Charlottesville VA, we cannot be assured that they too may not face acts of racism, discrimination or mistreatment of any kind. We also cannot be assured that they won't face moments requiring them to reach for their moral code to determine their next step, words or action. Knowing this, it is our duty as parents, teachers, and caring adults to steer our children onto a path of love instead of hate. We have to teach them acceptance of differences instead of isolation and division. The following books can help begin this necessary dialogue in your household.
For YA readers: The Hate you Give is a book about a girl who witnesses her black male friend become victim to police brutality. The aftermath of her friend's death ignites many feelings throughout the community.
For Middle Grade readers: One Crazy Summer is about an eleven year old girl and her sisters who spend the summer with their mom in Oakland, California in the 60's. Here, they are introduced to the Black Panther Party and their ideas about race, fighting the power and empowering their community.
For Middle Grades readers: The Great Gilly Hopkins is about a foster child who moves to a new home. Although the story centers around her adjusting to her new home and longing for her birth mother, it includes moments that describe Gilly's contempt for her black neighbor and her black teacher.
For Young readers: Little Blue and Little Yellow seems like a simple story about colors. But it can spark a big discussion for our smallest readers about differences, tolerance and acceptance.
Civil Rights should not be two words we only use to describe a moment in history. Civil Rights are ever changing to meet the needs of those who are not receiving fair and just treatment.
Resist thoughts of being too young or unimportant to have a voice for change.
When each person takes personal responsibility for practicing peace, love, fair treatment and compassion, they are contributing to societal change by becoming one of many.
These are a few books to spark conversations about civil rights around the world.
Margarita Engle tells the story of Antonio Chuffat, a young man of African, Chinese, and Cuban descent who becomes a champion for civil rights.
Asia, Africa, Europe—Antonio Chuffat’s ancestors clashed and blended on the beautiful island of Cuba. Yet for most Cubans in the nineteenth century, life is anything but beautiful. The country is fighting for freedom from Spain. Enslaved Africans and near-enslaved Chinese indentured servants are forced to work long, backbreaking hours in the fields.
So Antonio feels lucky to have found a good job as a messenger, where his richly blended cultural background is an asset. Through his work he meets Wing, a young Chinese fruit seller who barely escaped the anti-Asian riots in San Francisco, and his sister Fan, a talented singer. With injustice all around them, the three friends are determined to prove that violence is not the only way to gain liberty.
Almost 10 years before Brown vs. Board of Education, Sylvia Mendez and her parents helped end school segregation in California. An American citizen of Mexican and Puerto Rican heritage who spoke and wrote perfect English, Mendez was denied enrollment to a “Whites only” school. Her parents took action by organizing the Hispanic community and filing a lawsuit in federal district court. Their success eventually brought an end to the era of segregated education in California.
This around-the-world tour introduces readers to children who have taken on the role of social activist, fighting for human rights and social justice in countries as diverse as Yemen and Congo, Canada and the United States. Ten children receive main profiles, and over a dozen others are featured in smaller sidebars. Anita Khushwaha fought against gender and class bias in her community in India. Emman Bagual founded Mind Your Rights to fight child labor in the Philippines. Zach Bonner walked 1,000 miles to raise awareness about homeless children in the United States. A diverse range of other issues is covered, including aboriginal rights, human trafficking and child soldiers, and the full United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child can be found alongside tips for how kids everywhere can make a difference.
Jewell Parker Rhodes tells the story of almost 10 year old Maddy. The youngest of five girls, it is her turn to stay with her grandmother "down south". She is mesmerized by the New Orlean magic of food, people and culture. But when an oil leak spills into the waters and threatens the beautiful bayou she has come to love, she has to learn a lesson in pollution and has to decide quickly whether she has what it takes to help such a dire situation
Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern live with their father in New York. Their mother took off for California when Fern was just a baby. Now, six years later, the three sisters are going to California to visit the mother they barely know. When they get to Oakland, they figure out the woman who refers to herself as Nzila is not exactly mother. In the mornings she sends them to the free breakfast program ran by the black panthers. Here, they learn all about Black Power, black pride and standing up to "the man". This is a wonderful coming of age story about 3 sisters growing up during the late 60's
Delphine, Vonetta and Fern (Afua) are back with their dad in Brooklyn. But, surprise! Some changes have been happening while they were away visiting their mother in Oakland. Dad has a girlfriend who he is planning to marry is the main change and the girls are unsure how they feel about that.
Delphine, Vonetta and Fern are going back to their roots. This summer they are off to visit their grandmother, Big Ma and her mother Ma Charles in Alabama. Not only does Delphine learn surprising things about her family history, when tragedy strikes, she learns the importance of family bond.
It’s 1969, and half-black, half-Japanese Mimi and her family have just moved to a predominantly white town in Vermont. She struggles to fit in with her classmates, teachers, and neighbors, but Mimi has a dream of becoming an astronaut some day. So she follows her heart and enters science competitions. Told in verse, Full Cicada Moon is an important novel that accurately describes the angst that comes along with fitting in. It also teaches the importance of standing up for yourself and ultimately doing what makes you happy.
Sugar is the story of a girl who works in the sugar cane fields post slavery. With everyone fleeing North after emancipation, Chinese workers have to be brought in to help with the labor. Sugar, named after the sugar cane they are harvesting, forms unlikely friendships and learns new cultures as she shares her own culture with others that are different from her. Phenomenal read.
It's been four years since his mom died, and ten-year-old Bud Caldwell takes off from his third foster home in search of a better way to live his life. He's sick of being an orphan: unwanted, unloved, and all alone. On his own, he finds out how rough it is in Michigan in 1936, during the Great Depression. He meets many kind people along the way who help him complete his most awesome quest: to find the man that he thinks is his father. He's looking for a guy whose picture was on some old flyers for jazz concerts his mother kept around their house, so he doesn't have too much to go on. Oh, and did we mention that Bud is looking for a place to finally call home? Sounds pretty tough, right?
Bud doesn't think so.
Did you read Bud, Not Buddy? Well here is the sequel, The Mighty Miss Malone. Deza 'a dad has been laid off during the Great Depression and must travel out of town to look for work. The story follows Deza's family as they search for their father, traveling from Gary, Indiana all the way to Hooverville, right outside of Flint, Michigan.