Real Cowboys by Kate Hoefler and Jonathan Bean is a picturebook that illustrates cowboys in their daily lives. This week, Prisca and Ray continue our theme and examine who cowboys are with a fresh perspective from this book.
For the month of December, My Take/Your Take focuses on taking fresh perspectives on familiar characters. This week, we look at A Boy, a Mouse, and a Spider: The Story of E.B. White by Barbara Herkert and Lauren Castillo.
This week we discuss Leaving My Homeland, a part of a series of informational books. The nature of this book helps children understand the refugee experience with facts about Syria that led to the civil war and its citizens finding ways to escape.
The Journey by Francesca Sanna is a picturebook about a family’s journey of refuge after their country is unsafe after war. The family bonds are powerful in both the illustrations and the words. This book discusses refugee struggles and what happens to families that are refugees. It also provides conversation about how to help refugees in America today.
Adrift at Sea: A Vietnamese Boy’s Story of Survival by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch with Tuan Ho and Brian Deines is the unbelievably true story of a refugees escape to America. We continue this month’s My Take Your Take with this story that invites readers to experience what it is to be a refugee. It also invites deeper conversation about refugees in America with more personal reflection.
We continue this month’s My Take Your Take theme of refugees with The Silence Seeker by Ben Morley and Carl Pearce. It is the story of a new friendship between a kind young boy and a refugee boy who has just moved in next door. This story promotes kindness and introduces a conversation to have with children about refugees in America.
Flight is the story of refugees fleeing in the desert. At first, it appears to be the story about Mary and Joseph’s journey before the birth of Jesus Christ. It’s actually a much darker parallel to the original story. It is a picturebook that introduces the idea of refugees to children and highlights the importance of sheltering refugees. Sometimes shelter is not enough; we need to give them a home, too.
By Junko Sakoi, Tucson Unified School District and Yoo Kyung Sung, University of New Mexico
Graphic novels are entertaining for teachers and students. Lately we see more teachers adopt graphic novels in their classrooms. Manga may not be the same. Manga have a wide range of volume numbers and often have long series. Many teachers may not be able to monitor the entire volume sets in their busy schedule. We wonder what will happen if manga are mixed with other children’s books, specifically culturally diverse books. I, Yoo Kyung, often observe that students don’t always grab multicultural books when they have other choices (even in Albuquerque, “the Land of Enchantment”.) Book covers with different ethnic groups are not always their passion. Mixing manga within a text set may interest students in multicultural books through common themes and topics, not by category of “diverse” books. Intertextuality pursued by themes and topics attract students to read.
To wrap up October’s My Take/Your Take, we discuss The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet! by Carmen Agra Deedy. In a town where silence is law, a rowdy rooster enters the scene and demands to be heard. We will discuss how this playful picturebook illustrates individuality, voice and opposition in relation to the other stories we’ve explored this month.
All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely is a story that focuses on the relationship between Quinn, a white boy, and Rashad, an African American boy who is violently beaten by a white police officer. This week, we discuss the racial issues of this book and how they relate to society today. We will also discuss how bullying in this book compares to what we observed in The Hate U Give and Wolf Hollow.