Sunday, March 8, 2015

SOLC # 9 - Plus Monday Reading

Day Nine of the Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Challenge.            Tweet at #SOL15
     Thanks to Tara, Dana, Anna, Betsy, Beth and Stacey for getting us all through the first week!



Link up with Jen at TeachMentorTexts and Kellee and Ricki at UnleashingReaders. and Sheila at Book Journeys.  Come visit, and tweet at #IMWAYR. Thanks to Jen, Kellee, and Ricki for hosting!

thought first I would give another shout-out to my colleagues who are posting for the Slice of Life My assistant Jonathan is also participating at JK's Slice of Life, my colleague, Max at TeachingFromBehind, and his assistant, Kam at A Moment With Kam. 

Their class blog is Max and Kam's Class Blog.   I'm also slicing with my classroom at  Linda & Jonathan's Class Blog.  And I just found out that another colleague, Kimber, is joining us from her blog,  i-here-now.  How wonderful is that!   


             I have three books to share, all in their special way celebrating differences and the joy of accepting who you are, and at the same time celebrating others who have their own unique qualities. Many books for children are being published that have themes of identity challenges, and I love that they are.


Wings - written and illustrated by Christopher Myers
           I’m so grateful that I noticed this book featured on a shelf in my school library. How could I have missed this book, published in 2000! It’s about being oneself, the feeling lonely because of bullying, the celebration of looking at someone deemed “different” and seeing her or him through new eyes, and finally the bystander becomes an ally. A boy with wings is ridiculed. Even the teacher complains that his wings made it hard for students to see the blackboard. The ‘storyteller’ says: “They whispered about his wings/and his hair and shoes. Like they whisper about how quiet I am.” Earlier: “I don’t think he’s strange.” and Finally, “Stop.” I cried. “Leave him alone.” And they did. The illustrations are gorgeous “other-worldly” cutout collages on paint. You will love this book! Also look carefully at the cover, wonderful to examine.





Tomboy - a graphic memoir by Liz Prince
           This is another book about loving who one is, resisting the calls from social expectations, friends and enemies at school to be what they want to see, not what you feel you are. It’s not about gender changing, although recent books have been published recently about those challenges too, but about society’s expectations, the aisle of “girl toys” at the box stores, mostly all in pink, the birthday parties that are at nail salons, the expectations that girls who “dress up” must wear dresses. Liz Prince takes us through the inner and outer turmoil from age two, the last time she wore a dress, to adult hood, when finally, finally, she found that she was a girl, just not the girl everyone thinks she should be. Liz, who struggles all the growing up years, tells the small scenarios of life both angrily and with relief at times. It’s a memoir for all adolescents to read. Some language prevents me from saying it’s for younger readers, but I bet there are some younger advanced readers who would say, “That’s me!”

Auntie Yang’s Great Soybean Picnic - story by Ginnie Lo, illustrated by Beth Lo

            Two couples come to the US from China to study at American colleges and they are stuck because of the conflict of World War II. These two authors have written a picture book about these two, ever-growing, families who visit often from Indiana to Illinois. The main character who hosts is Auntie Yang, and on the way home from a Sunday drive one day, amid the fields of Illinois corn, they discover a field of soybeans. In American, at least then, soybeans were grown only to feed livestock, so the farmer was happy to share a bit of the crop for this “strange” Chinese family. Thus began the first soybean picnic, which became a reunion for many Chinese families throughout the Chicago area. The story shows a happy family having fun, missing their homeland, with the children who are more Americanized showing some “American” ways, too. It’s a loving book that ends with the long-separated family members finally reunited. The illustrations are filled with detail and are so happy. Lots to notice in this story!

Next:  Still Reading – Black Raven, White Dove by Elizabeth Wein. Almost done! Also finished Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart with a book group at school, will tell a little more next time. Wonderful book, wonderful group!  

22 comments:

  1. I'm not sure how you fit everything in that you do and read! I'm lucky to get a poem and a meal!

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  2. Wings sounds like a perfect addition to my ever growing bullying book collection. It is so tough growing up. We need books like these and Tomboy (just ordered). Can't wait to get it!

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  3. As always, Linda, you've found wonderful books that are new to me. I'll be ordering them soon! Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Tomboy caught my eye. I'm really becoming more interested in Graphic Novels and the complexity of the stories. Thanks for these titles.

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  5. These books look like stories to be celebrated! Like Kendra, Tomboy caught my eye. Thanks for sharing these wonderful titles!

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  6. I am really curious about this new Wien title. Look forward to hearing what you think.

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  7. You are the second one to suggest "Tomboy" - a graphic memoir by Liz Prince. I want to check that one out. I want to continue to find more books to share with my girls about the "joy of accepting who you are," especially with my twin girls! Thanks Linda!

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  8. Tomboy is sitting on my shelf--hoping to get to it this week. I just can't get enough graphic novels, especially memoirs.I've seen the Soybean Picnic book at the library but gave it a pass. Your review has intrigued me, though, so I'll pick it up next time. I don't think I've read Wings either--must remedy that soon!

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  9. Thanks for these, Linda! I love, love the description of Wings, and I am in the middle of a unit on immigration, so the Soybean Picnic sounds like a winner too. Requested both!

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  10. I haven't heard of Tomboy, Linda - sounds wonderful, and I'm always looking for new graphic novel-type books.

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  11. We love your description of Aunt Yang's Soybean picnic. We just requested it from the library - Thank you

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  12. Wings has been on my list as I walk by it every day. I will not walk past it again. I will pick it up and read it and think of you! Thank you!

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  13. I always look forward to your book recommendations. You seem to find books that I have not ever known, books that become high on my list of next reads because of your reviews. Thank you!

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  14. Wings sounds like a great book for building community. Thanks for the tip!

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  15. I want to read Tomboy so badly! I hope I can get my hands on it soon!

    Happy reading this week! :)

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  16. Tomboy sounds like one I might enjoy!
    I have Black Raven, White Dove for spring break. Looking forward to more reading time in a couple of weeks :)

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  17. Thanks everyone, find and enjoy these books, each one will be good for certain groups, special students! Black Raven, White Dove is taking me a while, but just because I have so much to read besides that! It is so intriguing the way she tells a tale!

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  18. Great sharings--I will come back to look at these.

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  19. Wings sounds like a great book. I will have to look for it. Have a great reading week!

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  20. Haven't read any of these books but will certainly check them out. Thanks for the list Linda.

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  21. Thank you once again for sharing the books you have found. Always fun to see what your find.

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  22. Tomboy looks awesome. I just love the cover! How FUN! Thank you for sharing this one. I hadn't heard of it!

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Having a conversation is a good thing!