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Indigenous Children’s Literature: Stories Matter Part IV

By Angeline P. Hoffman, White Mountain Apache Reservation

native-american-264942_1280Stories of Indigenous people matter, the stories influence how we think about ourselves, where we come from and formulate the way in which we think about cultural perspectives and people.

In looking at storytelling, a sub-theme emerged: ethics and teaching. These specific ideas are utilized by storytellers’ characters to convey these particular values. Teaching is very important in today’s Native American society. Teaching of traditions, cultures and sense of place are practices that are passed on through Continue reading

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Indigenous Children’s Literature: Stories Matter, Part 3

By Angeline P. Hoffman, White Mountain Apache Reservation

ChildrenDancingNatAMStories of Indigenous people matter. The stories influence how we think about ourselves, where we come from and formulate the way in which we think about cultural perspectives and people.

In Indigenous culture children emerge with clearly delineated, gender-specific roles, much like the distinct roles of adults. Continue reading

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Indigenous Children’s Literature: Stories Matter, Part 2

By Angeline P. Hoffman, White Mountain Apache Reservation

Mary_Kim_TitlaStories of Indigenous people matter because these stories influence how we think about ourselves, where we come from, and help formulate the way in which we think about our own cultural perspectives and people.

A topic emerging from our culture includes the significant cultural roles represented within our communities and families. Elders play a critical role within Indigenous communities. One of the unique ways American Indian people obtain knowledge is through the direct teaching of elders. Continue reading

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Indigenous Children’s Literature: Stories Matter

By Angeline Hoffman, White Mountain Apache Reservation

indigenous children's literatureStories of the Indigenous people matter, because the stories influences how we think about ourselves, where we come from and formulates the way in which we think about cultural perspectives and people.

The one element inherent in Stories Matter is Storytelling. Storytelling, in Indigenous narratives, involves the origins of identity, knowledge systems, and ways of knowing and being, Continue reading

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Those “#$@&%*!” Expletives in Children’s Books

by Deborah Dimmett, University of Arizona

BadWordIt has often been debated just how much children’s literature is intended for an adult audience to the same extent it is for children. We know from our own experiences with picturebooks that there are some interesting subtleties in the story and the illustrations that hail the adult reader.

A recently released picture book, Little Bird’s Bad Word (2015) by Jacob Grant, is an example of a picturebook that is definitely aimed at both children (ages 3-7) and the adults who read with/to them. Continue reading

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Providing Books for a School in Haiti

by Deborah Dimmett, University of Arizona

HaitiSchoolHaitian families struggle to send their children to school. Although there is no tuition for attending national schools, parents who earn $1 or less a day still have to find the means to purchase textbooks, supplies, uniforms, and pay the registration fees of $20 to $30 per year if their children are to attend school. Many families make the initial investment in their children’s education through Grade 3. However, the cost of schooling increases after 3rd grade. In fact, it is not unusual for schools to send students home who come without textbooks. Continue reading

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Texting . . . An Unexpected Affordance for Inclusion

by Jeanne Henry, Hofstra University & Keriann Boorum, freelance ASL/English interpreter, Hofstra University

DeafWhile a handful of YA authors have written about or at least included Deaf characters, Deaf teens remain underrepresented in YA literature. Unfortunately, the depictions that do exist are not as accurate as teachers might like, which serves neither the Deaf nor hearing communities. If hundreds of YA authors were suddenly inspired to depict Deaf teens, both so that these teens might see themselves in the pages of books and so hearing teens could learn a thing or two about Deaf people, they would encounter an immediate challenge: Continue reading

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Games Are Ancient* and So Are the Reasons Teens Play Them

by Jeanne Henry, Hofstra University; Tonia Asare-Smith, Dreamweaver House, & Hofstra University; Tashema Spence, Pathways to Graduation, NYCDOE, & Hofstra University

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERATo an outsider, the appeal of gaming can be baffling, at best and, at worst, non-gamers, especially of the adult variety, can be quick to judge the character of button-mashing game devotees. But two YA books that go a long way in illustrating the considerable depth and dimension to video game play Continue reading