Children Respond to Xavier Garza’s Books

by Janine M. Schall, University of Texas-Pan America, Edinburg, TX

In previous posts I talked with author Xavier Garza about his books for children. I’d like to share more children’s responses to Xavier’s work in this bonus post. I’d also like to ask other teachers and librarians to share by commenting here how they have used multicultural literature with their students. How do students respond to multicultural literature? How do teachers and librarians facilitate this response?

Angie Hilton read Zulema and the Witch Owl with her fourth grade students in Alamo, Texas. Her students then created an artistic response. I’ve included some of their work in this slide show:

You can see additional responses from Angie’s students in the video clips. Here each student is discussing their favorite parts of the book.

Sonia Garcia read Lucha Libre-The Man in the Silver Mask with her 4th graders from Weslaco, Texas. The students created both drawn and written responses. In this post you can see their artwork accompanied by a transcription of their writing. Most of Sonia’s students speak English as an additional language to their home language of Spanish. I’ve kept the original student spelling, grammar and punctuation.

Lucia picture

Lucia wrote: The story reminds me when I was six years old. I went to a wresleing match. The macth had black benchez, and with food all over the place. Me and my friends Emily, hope, kala sat on a dirty bench, but we were front row seat. The wresleing was going to start all of the crowd started going crazy. Here comes a wresler, and it is John Cina!! I was yeling loud. When John cina went inside the ring I wondered who was John cina playing aginset. Here comes Big Show!! Wow, “I said” he is tall, huge, musgler. I think big show is going to win. I yeled come on I was cheering for John cina. It was a mericle. John cina pick up the huge, tall, mucler big show. John cina knock big show down, and he ringed big show 1..2..3. ding, ding, ding, John cina won. I yelled yes John cina won.

My friends jumped up and down we were all happy that John cina won, and after the fight we went to get pizza.

Faith image

Faith wrote a song in response to Lucha Libre-The Man in the Silver Mask. It is meant to be sung to the beat of “Mary Had a Little Lamb.”


“Ouch” you just hurt me

Hurt me

Michael I’m going to tackle you

Talkle you tackle you

Why did you just change your move?

Change your move change your move!

I’m going to get you back

Get you back get you back

Your going to regat it

Reageat it, reageat it!

Here comes the big hit

Big hit big hit!

I’ll just run right now

Right now, right now

Walca lea, watchalea, and watchla

I told you would regeat it

Regeat it, regreat it!

Well, you thought I was kidding

I’m sorry that I tackeld you

Tackled you, tackeld you

Well bye forever!

By, Faith


Manuel wrote: I liked the story LUCHA! LIBRE! Because. I remember that i got in a fight with my 15 year old cousin. We punched each other in the face. And knee kikcing.

Jorge image

Jorge responded: When I saw the titole I thoght it was going to be boring. Because I dont like wreasacling that much. But I was wrong when Mis. Garizea read that book. My faviret part was when the guy with the silver mask wher beating the cucuy, vampedo, and the cave man.

Lesly image

Lesly wrote a story in response to Lucha Libre-The Man in the Silver Mask: “Lesly come and help me” yelled my sister. “Going” I yelled back. My sister was watching t.v. She was writing something. “I’m going to tell dad about the lucha libre” she said. “Lizbeth I don’t think my dad likes lucha libre” I replied. Will see about that. Lizbeth ran across the living room to tell my dad. He told us he was going with my tio to watch it. “Okay” we said. Me and my sister watch t.v. It was 9:00 pm, when my dad entered the living room. He had a grin in his face. He told my mom that John Cena won! “Hooray, Hooray, Hooray” we yelled. “Lucha Libre is the best” said my dad. “Okay everybody party is over” said my mom. Haw! we said. Anyways we all went to sleep. “It was a nice day” I told my sister, though she was already alseep.

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