Sunday, January 29, 2017

This is How Reading Teachers Resist

The new semester begins Monday.  Friday was a grading day, and I got to spend a few hours in my classroom reading professional material and planning what I'm going to do in my classroom during the rest of the year.

I've been wanting to do a formal #bookaday challenge, and my plan for the next six week grading period was to read a picture book each day, based around one topic per week.  Within that topic, I'd be teaching kids how to identify theme.  There's more to it than that, but that's the background.  I gathered a bunch of picture books I own and put even more on hold at the library, and took a look at which weeks were full weeks and which weeks we'd lose a day.  I thought I'd do a week about death/dying, a week about friendship and loneliness, a week about creativity, a week about immigration, a week about get the idea.

But now I'm thinking we may start with immigration, and then stay there as long as I can find more good books.  Or maybe use a bunch of these, and then find a bunch of civil disobedience books.

Empathy through fiction.  I still believe in it.

How Many Days to America?

Who Belongs Here? An American Story

The Arrival

Stepping Stones: A Refugee Family's Journey

My Name Is Jorge on Both Sides of the River

Going Home

Grandfather's Journey

Passage to Freedom: The Sugihara Story

The Lotus Seed

The Color of Home

How I Learned Geography

A Thirst for Home


  1. I also believe in empathy through fiction. The world would be a better place if everybody read. The Arrival is on my TBR list. It’s a beautiful book, and I want to own a copy.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

    1. Isn't it though? I used to own a copy and it disappeared at some point. Need a new one. Grandfather's Journey and Passage to Freedom are my two other favorites from this list.

  2. This got me a little choked up and is a beautiful idea. I definitely believe that fiction can help open our eyes and understand. I'm a scientist and have gone through numerous trainings on how to better communicate with non-scientists so that they understand and care The universal message has been to deliver the information in the form of a story (non-fictional in this case but you get the picture) because that is how we humans most learn about things and learn to care about them. Sounds like a great semester ahead and thank you for being such a thoughtful educator!

    1. Muriel Rukayser said, "The Universe is made of stories, not atoms." One of my favorite quotes.

  3. Marvelous plan. I'm very proud of your work. I'd add The Journey (2016) and My Name is Yoon.

    1. Ooh, I just got The Journey at the library. Powerful stuff.


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