October 20th | Week in Review

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¡Hola a todos! I hope you enjoy this week’s resources.

– Check out Rethinking School’s New way of teaching Columbus: Putting him on trial for murder. “‘It begins on the premise that there’s this monstrous crime in the years after 1492 when perhaps as many as 3 million or more Taínos on the island of Hispaniola lost their lives,’ says Bill Bigelow, the curriculum editor of Rethinking Schools and the co-director of the Zinn Education Project. ‘It asks students to wrestle with the responsibility in this.’

— Also from Rethinking Schools: there’s a second edition of one of our favorite books: Reading, Writing, and Rising Up by Linda Christensen. To learn more about what prompted this re-release and its importance for education today, read this interview with Christensen “on the second edition…what role the classroom played in revision, and what needs to change in how we teach.”

– Thanks to an interesting initiative in Washington, DC, we can gain a quick glimpse into how third graders are coping with and processing current issues around the world. Check out how The World According to Washington’s Third-Graders to hear how the students “were generous, thoughtful and eager to talk about everything under the sun: personal experiences with racism, environmental policy, whether it’s a good idea to clone dinosaurs.” It’s a good reminder that young children think deeply about the same issues as adults.

–If you get a chance, you should read why when students are traumatized, teachers are too. One teacher expresses, “When you’re learning to be a teacher, you think it’s just about lesson plans, curriculum, and seating charts. I was blindsided by the emotional aspect of teaching—I didn’t know how to handle it.”

— There is a soft bigotry of having to change your name. “… There’s a difference between a name you can choose for yourself and a name that’s given to you because other people can’t be bothered with pronouncing it, even if the same sounds exist in the English tongue.”

-Lastly, here is a list of books to help kids understand the fight for racial equality, with an emphasis on the history of the US. Thanks to Penguin House for putting together these “resources to help us move beyond tokens and icons to a deeper understanding of our history and its legacy, toward our own marches for liberty and justice for all.

Abrazos,
Alin Badillo


Image: A Splash of Color. Reprinted from Flickr username Tanguy Domenge under CC©.

October 6th | Week in Review

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Hola a todos,

It is a hard week for many around the country. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families, and communities. For educators addressing this most recent violence in the classroom, please consider referring to Scholastic’s Resources for parents and educators for talking to children about the Las Vegas shooting. “No matter where you reside, it’s likely the young people you know will see the news headlines on television and online.” Like the quote says, it doesn’t matter where a person resides, children will be affected and classrooms should address this issue regardless of the subject being taught.

You might also consider this article addressing how to Harness Effects of Negative News on Young People using Literacy for Healing. “The right books and stories can open doors for meaningful conversations and propel young people toward civic engagement.”

And as we acknowledge Las Vegas, so we also acknowledge the ongoing recovery efforts in Puerto Rico and Mexico. For those who embrace this as a teachable moment, here is an excellent syllabus of essential tools for critical thinking about the Puerto Rican debt crisis.

Finally, for those who are turning the page to other conversations, here is a smattering of other recent resources and materials:

  • In a moment when traumatic stories and experiences are forefront, it’s important to take a moment and offer students a celebratory perspective of their cultures. Classroom Communities shared a personal note in this regard with their article on “Celebrating through Stories” during Hispanic Heritage Month.  “As a young African-American girl it was hard for me during the month of February when I felt that Black History month was spent learning about slavery and hardship. The celebratory aspect was often lost for me. As a teacher I have tremendous power over how students feel during these months of celebration. In our classroom community we choose to celebrate stories, authors, and people who represent this rich culture of beauty and strength.”
  • Remezcla’s 10 Books With Well-Developed, Complex Afro-Latino Characters.
  • Rethinking Schools shared how you can take the fight against white supremacy into schools. “…But more than that, we need a history that helps us learn how to move beyond tearing down statues and toward tearing down the racist system that those statues represent.”
  • For more resources for Hispanic Heritage Month, Colorín Colorado has a great book list for elementary schools.
  • If you would like to teach about Indigenous people, consider using animated shorts that celebrate 11 of Mexico’s Indigenous Languages.
  • Latinx in Kid Lit flipped the script and shared A Letter from Young Adult Readers to Latinx Writers About Race, Gender, and Other Issues. “I asked students to create suggestions of what they hoped to see in Latinx literature for youth. What follows is a list of suggestions gathered from our collective conversation and survey of Latinx literature for youth, including comments composed by my students for those who are currently writing and those who hope to write for young readers. Students also kept in mind those in publishing and award committees.”
  • And as a last note to send us with positive thoughts for the day, there are beautiful new books swirling around in the blogging world right now. A few that caught our eye:
    • From Latinx in Kid Lit, a book review of Martí’s Song for Freedom / Martí y sus versos por la libertad, written by Emma Otheguy and illustrated by Beatriz Vidal. “The back cover features an actual portrait of José Martí, and a quote: ‘And let us never forget that the greater the suffering, the greater the right to justice, and that the prejudices of men and social inequalities cannot prevail over the equality which nature has created’…beyond Cuba, Martí’s Song for Freedom/Martí y sus versos por la libertad comes at an important time when even young readers are thinking about how we might make the world a more just place.”
    • From LGBTQ Reads, an interview with Anna-Marie McLemore, author of Wild Beauty, of which the author writes that “Wild Beauty is my bi Latina girls and murderous, enchanted gardens book. It’s the story in which I gave myself permission to go all in with the feel and setting of a fairy tale, but with the focus on the kind of girls we often see left out of fairy tales.”

 Image: We Can End Gun Violence. Reprinted from PA PENN Live under CC©.

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September 29th | Week in Review

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¡Hola a todos! With Hispanic Heritage Month upon is, our minds are percolating with the wealth of resources available to help teach about Hispanic heritage in the classroom.

– First and foremost, we’re proud to share an amazing resource produced by Teaching for Change: Teaching Central America. This website is dedicated to producing rich, nuanced content focused on Central America. It’s particularly useful right now as educators turn to this topic in their classrooms, but we also hope that it will be a tool to infuse Latin American content into the curriculum all year long. Full disclaimer: our office, the UNM Latin American and Iberian Institute, is a partner organization on this initiative.

– Next, to put some of these resources in context, here’s a lesson plan on “Latino Heritage” from Teaching Tolerance that introduces the topic of Latino Heritage and offers activities to help students gain a deeper understanding of past and present struggles for Latino civil rights.

– Scholastic has done some legwork in compiling lesson plans, book lists, crafts and biographies to help teachers looking for resources to Bring Hispanic Heritage Month to Life

– Here are 14 New Children’s and YA Books that Celebrate Hispanic Heritage.  This list includes our recently read (and loved!) book, Lucky Broken Girl by Ruth Behar.

— Embrace Race posted 26 Children’s Books to Support Conversations on Race, Racism, and Resistance. “Research from Harvard University suggests that children as young as three years old, when exposed to racism and prejudice, tend to embrace and accept it, even though they might not understand the feelings. By age 5, white children are strongly biased towards whiteness.” Many of the books on the list have been featured here before on the blog and we even have curriculum to go along with them, such as Separate is Never Equal by Duncan Tonatiuh.

–Share with your students 18 Major Moments in Hispanic History that All Americans Need to Know. This includes a series of accomplishments from major social justice movements to policy to demographics, and also includes deeply troubling moments like public health test trials.

-When considering short films about food, entertainment, and culture, you might want to check out PBS’s list of Videos that Celebrate Latino Heritage and Culture.

–Additionally, the National Education Association has K-12 resources dedicated to Hispanic Heritage Month.

– Lastly, we conclude this list with Teaching Resources from the Smithsonian Institute, which highlights materials on the Bracero Program, Latino music, Puerto Rican Carnival, and much more…

Abrazos,
Alin Badillo


Image: La Lucha Sigue. Reprinted from Flickr user Daniel Lobo under CC©.

 

September 22nd | Week in Review

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¡Hola a todos! Here are more recent resources from around the web. Enjoy and happy Hispanic Heritage Month!

Latinos in Kid Lit posted a book review for Shadowhouse Fall by Daniel José Older, a follow-up to his book, Shadowshaper, which we featured here on the blog.  This is the second book in his “Shadowshaper Cypher” series and is recommended for advanced readers. As did Shadowshaper, this book grapples with difficult topics for young adults of color, including racialized violence, white supremacy, and youth activism.

– Colorín Colorado discussed Serving English Learners with Disabilities: How ESL/Bilingual Specialists Can Collaborate for Student Success. “Appropriately serving English Learners (ELs) with disabilities requires a team effort involving professionals from multiple disciplines to ensure that instruction is provided to support both the language-learning and disability-related needs of the students.”

— Also, Latinos in Kid Lit shared a Letter from Young Adult Readers to Latinx Writers about Race, Gender and Other issues. “As a class, we considered how these texts represent the Latinx community, and the history of Latin America and the Caribbean, to young readers, and in some cases, because of the lack of Latinx representation and authors in youth literature, these books may be the only portrayals a young reader may encounter in a book about Latinx people.”

–For those of you teaching middle or high school history, especially about the border, Santos released a new album named “Agonía.’ This album describes the many experiences of living at the border in Tijuana.

Abrazos,
Alin Badillo

September 15th | Week in Review

2017-09-15-WWW-01-01¡Hola a todos! I am very excited to start sharing resources again with you all.

Latinos in Kid Lit has just launched a new series called “Spotlight on Middle Grade Authors.” They’re kicking it off with a feature on Margarita Engle, the Young People’s Poet Laureate. Check it out to hear her describe the birth of her passion for writing.

Rethinking Education shares why Spanish Fluency in the U.S. decreases with each generation. “About 88 percent of Latinos ages 5 to 17 in 2014 said they either speak only English at home or speak English ‘very well,’ compared with 73 percent in 2000.”

–Rethinking Education also posted 9 Bilingual Children’s Books That Make Learning a New Language Easy, a list catered specifically to Spanish teachers.

–For those of you teaching middle or high school history, Rethinking Schools shared Justice for Dreamers- Punish the Authors of Forced Migration, an article that explains how foreign policies creates forced migration.“The perpetrators of the “crime” are those who wrote the trade treaties and the economic reforms that made forced migration the only means for families to survive

— Lastly, Remezcla featured Google latest initiative, which involved the launch of  One of the Largest Digital Collections of Latino Art and History. “The collection features more than 2,500 pieces of art through 90 exhibits.”

Abrazos
Alin Badillo

April 28th | Week in Review

2017-04-28-01.png¡Hola a todos! This is my last post of the school semester. I want to thank everyone for taking the time to look at sources I have shared through this blog. I am always pleased to share them with you and hopeful that they may be of use to you.

– You might only think of tortillas when you think of Mexico, but the country’s culinary repertoire goes far beyond that – in part because of the overlapping indigenous, Spanish, and French influences. The next time you’re using food as an introduction to Mexican culture, you might want to read this Illustrated Guide to Mexico’s Delicious Breads. The article discusses how bread was made more palatable with “the addition of indigenous ingredients, like corn, piloncillo, and chocolate. And then when the French began arriving to Mexico, they introduced European baking techniques, which have had long-lasting effects in the Latin American country.”

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April 21st | Week in Review

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¡Hola a todos! This week’s resources are diverse and I hope they are of interest to you.

– Check out how this College Student (Kaya Thomas) Created a Mobile Directory of 600 Books that Prioritize Diversity. After realizing that most of the characters in books she read didn’t look like her, “Thomas devised an iPhone app that functioned as a directory of 300 books showcasing characters of color.”

These Latin Americans Celebrated their Roots with a Mesoamerican Ballgame Championship in Tetiohuacán. This ballgame, known as “pitza” in the Classic Maya language, was celebrated over 3,000 years ago in the region and is today practiced as part of an effort to reclaim culture and history.

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