The titles included here address questions about inventions in a variety of entertaining and informative ways. They also address the life and times of the inventors themselves, making many excellent choices for Common Core concepts.
From Louise Erdrich’s Chickadee to Eric Gansworth’s If I Ever Get Out of Here, the books on Debbie Reese’s list of titles by Native and non-Native authors, and the accompanying digital and multimedia resources, will enrich and strengthen your library’s collection on American Indian cultures and peoples.
The books presented in this month’s collection development column have been selected to support and enhance expeditions to favorite preschool and elementary-aged destinations: farms and other food-producing enterprises; museums (both natural history and art); nature reserves and outdoor-observation areas; community institutions; and zoos and aquariums. A mix of fact-filled offerings and fictional adventures, all of these titles give kids a break from the routine and encourage interactive learning experiences.
Filled with unlikely but enduring attachments, ostensibly incompatible Romeos and Juliets, and unexpected instances of true animal camaraderie, these books prove that affection can allow individuals to look beyond their differences and forge long-lasting bonds. Use these books to expand Valentine’s Day and friendship storytimes; tease out overarching themes; and initiate discussions of tolerance, compassion, and community.
Fifty years ago this May, people around our country turned on their televisions to the sight of children being viciously assaulted with fire hoses and snarling dogs by uniformed grown men, their faces twisted with hatred. The violence in Birmingham, Alabama, stirred a swelling of national conscience and raised questions demanding an answer: Do we really believe that “all men are created equal”? What would our country look like if we really did? What has to change to make that dream a reality?
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A visit to the children’s section of any large bookstore might leave the impression that current fantasy consists almost entirely of lengthy Harry Potter or Percy Jackson clones, entries in a trilogy or longer series. Happily, some deeper digging uncovers a wonderful variety of middle grade, stand-alone fantasy novels which exemplify some of the best qualities and possibilities of the genre. While all fiction faces the challenge of making the reader believe in [...]
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Just what constitutes a “nail-biter” is certainly open for debate, but librarians know they are highly sought after titles. Suspense and action are two main requisites, and a good thriller is structured to keep readers hanging at the end of almost every chapter, leaving them hungry for more. For those serving reluctant readers, these titles are gold. Fortunately, nail-biters can be found in almost every genre. Since YA lit has been dominated by [...]
If the pundits and talking heads are to be believed, politics in America is dirty business. Lobbying, partisanship, pork-barrel spending, and mudslinging make up no small part of it. There is much more to politics, though. Beneath the necrotic layers of scandal and corruption are the birth-bright essentials of policy, governance, civics, and people. This collection of books, websites, and films attests to that with content, style, and format that are ideal for children and teens.
As we mark the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens’s birth, there can be no doubt that the celebrated author is alive and well in the hearts and minds of readers. Never, it seems, has the timelessness of his work been more apparent. In honor of his bicentennial, websites, celebrations, essay contests, exhibitions, and, of course, a rash of new books exploring the man and his work have emerged in recent months.
Born to an upper-middle-class family [...]
Terrifying monsters and fearsome beasts? Courageous and quick-witted heroes? Thrilling adventures and dangerous quests? These tales have it all, plus the unforgettable characters, timeless themes, and range of human emotion that have drawn people to Greek myths for eons. Included here is a spectacular array of offerings guaranteed to tempt myriad tastes and reading abilities. Spanning in age range from elementary level through young adult, the titles are presented in user-friendly sections: picture books, inviting collections of tales each [...]
“Indeed, learning to write may be a part of learning to read. For all I know,writing comes out of a superior devotion to reading.” —Eudora Welty
It’s unlikely that Ms. Welty was talking about a first grader putting words on paper, but the connection between reading and writing is a foundation in education. “Writing helps a student think,” says Assistant Superintendent Heather Sheridan-Thomas of TST (Tompkins-Seneca-Tioga) BOCES district in Central New York. “They slow down [...]
July 2010, I attended “Empires of the Wind: Exploration of the United States Pacific West Coast,” one of the National Endowment for the Humanities Landmarks of American History and Culture workshops for teachers. During my week in San Diego, I learned much about this often overlooked part of American history and am pleased to be able to share what I learned with other school librarians across the country.
From a European perspective, North America’s Western coast was one of [...]