May 26, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Global Literature to Teach Global Understanding

Global Literature To Teach Global Understanding This spring, several new books that foster global understanding for childhood audiences have been released that are written and illustrated by international authors and illustrators. While these works of global literature certainly stand on their own, collectively they offer classrooms an opportunity for students to grow deeper understandings of […]

Rebound

Rebound Written by Kwame Alexander and Illustrated by Dawud Anyabwile Published in 2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Grades 4-8 ISBN: 978-0-544-86813-7   Book Review In this much-anticipated prequel to his Newbery-winning novel The Crossover, Kwame Alexander draws from similar themes and the rhythm of basketball to transport readers back in time to 1988 with another […]

Between the Lines: How Ernie Barnes Went from the Football Field to the Art Gallery

Between the Lines: How Ernie Barnes Went from the Football Field to the Art Gallery Written by Sandra Neil Wallace and Illustrated by Bryan Collier Published in 2018 by Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers ISBN 978-1-4814-4387-6 Grades K-5 Book Review “Ernest looked around his neighborhood. It no longer appeared ordinary. In the movement […]

The Word Collector

The Word Collector Written and Illustrated by Peter Reynolds 2018 Orchard Books ISBN 978-0-545-86502-9 Grades K-5 Book Review Fans of Peter Reynolds’ Ish, The Dot, and Happy Dreamer, will be delighted by his latest picturebook, The Word Collector. Reynolds continues his trend of crafting seemingly simple text with significant and lasting meaning, this time with […]

Wishtree

Wishtree Written by Katherine Applegate and Illustrated by Charles Santoso 2017 Feiwel and Friends ISBN 978-1-250-04322-1   Grades 3-6 Book Review “My friends call me Red, and you can, too. But for a long time people in the neighborhood have called me ‘the wishtree.’” From celebrated author, Katherine Applegate, comes her latest literary triumph–Wishtree. Fast-paced, […]

What Do You Do With a Chance?

What Do You Do With a Chance? Written by Kobi Yamada and Illustrated by Mae Besom Forthcoming in Feb. 2018 by Compendium Inc. ISBN 978-1-943-20073-3 Grades PreK-3   Book Review “I wished I had taken my chance. I realized I had wanted it, but I still didn’t know if I had the courage.” The struggle […]

Why Am I Me?

Why Am I Me? Written by Paige Britt and Illustrated by Sean Qualls and Selina Alko Published in 2017 by Scholastic Press ISBN 978-1-338-05314-2 Grades PreK-5   Book Review “Why am I me…and not you? Why are you, you…and not me?” These seemingly simple, yet profoundly philosophical questions are made to feel familiar in this […]

The Antlered Ship

The Antlered Ship Written by Dashka Slater and Illustrated by Terry and Eric Fan Published in 2017 by Beach Lane Books ISBN 978-1-4814-5160-4 Grades PreK-2 Book Review When a mysterious antlered ship arrives at Emerald Lagoon, a philosophical fox named Marco is suddenly filled with quixotic questions: Why do some songs make you happy and […]

Dorothea Lange: The Photographer Who Found the Faces of the Depression

Dorothea Lange: The Photographer Who Found the Faces of the Depression Written by Carole Boston Weatherford Illustrated by Sarah Green Published in 2017 by Albert Whitman & Company Grades 1-6 ISBN: 978-0-8075-1699-7 Book Review “More than a photographer, she was a storyteller with a camera.” Best known to the world for her iconic photograph Migrant […]

A Letter to All the Children of America

For the past few years, we have launched our new blog season with a post that serves as a reflection on the current cultural context we are living in as teachers, librarians, and literature lovers. The past two years we wrote about what we believe matters most when selecting books and building classroom libraries. We […]

Over and Under the Pond

Over and Under the Pond Written by Kate Messner Illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal Published in 2017 by Chronicle Books Grades PreK-5 ISBN: 978-1-4521-4542-6 Book Review “Over the pond, cattails rustle and shush in the wind…Under the pond, a caddisfly larva builds a home of her own–a secret shelter of pebbles and sand.” As with […]

The Girl Who Ran: Bobbi Gibb, the First Woman to Run the Boston Marathon

Written by Frances Poletti and Kristina Yee Illustrated by Susanna Chapman To be published in 2017 by Compendium Grades K-5 Book Review   “Girls can’t run marathons, don’t you know that?…Good girls don’t run. You’ll hurt yourself!” What does it take to follow your heart, rather than bend towards the fears of others? From the […]

Wolf in the Snow

Wolf in the Snow Written and Illustrated by Matthew Cordell Published in 2017 by Feiwel and Friends ISBN 978-1-250-07636-6 Grades preK-3   Book Review Get ready to challenge all of your assumptions about stories of girls in red-hooded jackets and wolves. Counter to traditional fairy tales that caution (and condition) us to be fearful of […]

Flying Lessons and Other Stories

Flying Lessons and Other Stories Edited by Ellen Oh Published in 2017 by Crown Books for Young Readers ISBN: 978-1-101-93459-3 Grades 4-6     Book Review  Don’t we all have “milk-snorting-out-of-your-nose…listen-to-how-cool-and-awesome-we-are…come-close-so-we-can-whisper-in-your-ear” stories? In this groundbreaking anthology, published in partnership with We Need Diverse Books and edited by its co-founder Ellen Oh, are ten stories by […]

World Read Aloud Day

Read aloud. Change the World. This is the motto for LitWorld’s global literacy event–World Read Aloud Day held today on February 16th, 2017.World Read Aloud Day was created in 2010 by LitWorld, a renowned literacy 501(c)3 organization, to share the message that the read aloud is a simple, powerful act of social engagement that can change […]

A Poem for Peter

A Poem for Peter Written by Andrea Davis Pinkney Pictures by Lou Fancher & Steve Johnson Published in 2016 by Viking Press Grades K-5 ISBN: 978-0-425-28768-2   Book Review “Brown-sugar boy in a blanket of white./ Bright as the day you came onto the page./ From the hand of a man who saw you for […]

Love in Action: Children’s Literature to Promote Hope and Counter Fear

  Congressman John Lewis uses the phrase “love in action” when speaking about the nonviolent revolution of the 1960s. When faced with systemic oppression, Congressman Lewis and fellow civil rights marchers led with love. Today, we are faced once again as a nation with divisive, harmful rhetoric and actions that threaten the values of civil […]

Before Morning

Before Morning Written by Joyce Sidman Illustrated by Beth Krommes Published in 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Grades K-5 ISBN: 978-0-547—97917-5 Book Review What do you wish for? In this striking picture book by the dynamic team of Newberry Honor winner Joyce Sidman and Caldecott medalist Beth Krommes, readers are invited to wonder about a […]

Best of 2016 and Happy Holidays

It has been another extraordinary year in children’s and young adult literature. On January 2nd, we’ll be back with a regular posting. In the meantime, we wanted to share a collection of “Best of 2016″ lists so that you have them all in one place. Part of our book selection process involves reading reviews by […]

Some Writer: The Story of E.B. White

Written by Melissa Sweet Afterword by Martha White Published in 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Grades K-6 ISBN: 978-0-544-31959-2 Book Review “All that I hope to say in books, all that I ever hope to say, is that I love the world.” Elwyn Brooks White, better known as E.B. White to the world and Andy […]