In last week’s review of Separate is Never Equal I promised I’d share the educator’s guide for the book this week. As one of this year’s Américas Award winners, the Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs sponsored the creation of curriculum materials to support using the book in the classroom. I’m really excited to share them with you today. In the guide you’ll find a variety of activities to help you implement the book in your classroom, whether on it’s own or part of a larger unit. The book would be an excellent addition to any unit plan on social justice, activism, children as activists, or Latino/a history. As we’ve mentioned in the past, there are a number of reasons diverse literature (like this book) is so important to our students and classrooms. The hope is that through providing students the space to engage with texts like this, we are giving them the opportunity to see themselves reflected in the books they read in school, or to learn about the lived realities of others so that they become more empathetic.
Our review shared a number of the reasons we believe this book to be a powerful resource for the classroom, so today I’ll just give you a quick overview of the activities in the guide. Many may think that since this is a picture book it is only appropriate for younger students, but it can really be engaging across grade levels, even into high school. I think it is an excellent model for how to turn historical research into a creative final project. Some students may find creating their own book far more engaging than writing a research paper. While I doubt you’ll have any issue in justifying the use of this book in a curricular unit, the activities have been created to highlight meta-cognitive reading strategies such as visualization, prediction, inference, questioning, and making personal connections. We’ve also included lessons based on GLAD and ELL teaching strategies. The guide is divided into three main sections of activities: Pre-Reading, Guided Reading, and Post-Reading. It also includes background information on the book and complementary resources such as other children’s and YA literature, multimedia resources, and relevant lesson plans.
We’re still working on finalizing everything, including adding in last week’s review, but you can access the semi-completed version with all of the lesson plans and activities included here. We’d love to hear your thoughts! Definitely let us know if you use the book in your classroom.
I’ll be back later this week to share our review of Margarita Engle’s memoir Enchanted Air!