¡Mira Look!: Themed Book Lists: Indigenous Peoples & Rights

Photo from Flickr CC user: Casbr

Photo from Flickr CC user: Casbr

Hello readers! This week I wanted to give you some resources on teaching about indigenous peoples and rights. Sadly, unjustly and unfortunately, the stories, histories and struggles of Native peoples are left out of history, literature and culture. But their stories deserve to be heard, to be understood and cherished. Many children in our schools identify as a Native American, or a Native Central or South American, we owe it to them to enlighten ourselves to the resources available that showcase their culture and share it with their classmates. Not all of these books are award winners, but I will highlight the ones that are and the links are directly to the book’s Amazon page. Continue reading


¡Mira Look!: Themed Book Lists: Immigration

???????????????????????????????????????To wrap up the end of the school year, Katrina, Adam and I will be compiling lists of books for you to check out for use in your classroom. These lists will be thematic and we’ll provide the links to Amazon. Because we are trying to give you a broad swath of the available literature, we won’t only be suggesting award winners, though we will denote which ones have won an award. This list is fairly short as our blog, through ¡Mira Look!, En la Clase, and Book Reviews, discusses numerous wonderful immigration/immigrant books (click on the links to be taken to our pages).  As always, we encourage your suggestions in the comments below. Continue reading

¡Mira Look!: Human Rights and Taste of Salt

a taste of salt2As we shift our focus from poetry to human rights, I found myself sadly unsurprised at the lack of great children’s and YA literature on human rights and Latin America. On the one hand, everything can be boiled down to human rights; and indeed, much of what we discuss on Vamos centers on the idea that one of those rights is the right to be in a diverse, culturally sensitive, exploration centered classroom, where all students see themselves and their future potential in the books they read, the stories they hear and the arts they craft. On the other hand, if everything is boiled down to human rights, does that take away some salience  from those pillars of Rights that everyone is entitled to? Or does discussing rights necessarily encompass all our daily interactions? Continue reading

¡Mira Look!: Poetry Resources For Older Readers & Rhymers

To close out our posts on National Poetry Month, I wanted to follow up last week’s post (which gave resources for younger readers–click here to read it) by offering some great poetry resources for older readers. I would really encourage all of you to utilize plenty of poetry in your lesson plans, in April and other months. Poetry is a wonderful literary craft that can speak to kids who may have a hard time engaging with different literary styles/genres. As always, there are far too many for me to list here, so please feel free to share your ideas in the comments below. Continue reading

¡Mira Look!: A Few of the Many Glorious Poetry Books

Flickr Creative CommonsFlickr user Marie Hale

Flickr Creative Commons
Flickr user Marie Hale

Let me tell you great readers just how many poetry books there are in the great library in the sky: a Capybara’s worth. There are so many in fact, that it would be impossible to highlight even the top 25 very best in the time allotted for our poetry books. With that being said, I’m going to give you a quick review of a few this week and a few next week to help you on your Vamos a Leer inspired poetry journey. Continue reading

¡Mira Look!: Update

Hello blog readers! Thank you so much for your comments on last week’s ¡Mira Look! post.The LAII is gearing up for another GREAT conference, please find information here. As such, my time is being taken with conference planning and logistics. Please stay tuned for posts by Katrina and the newest member to the Vamos team, Adam! Adam will be taking over the WWW posts on Fridays. I will post a poetry resource for ¡Mira Look! as soon as possible.

Have a great Spring week!!


¡Mira Look!: Singing Oranges and Lemons

singing oranges¡Today’s Mira Look! kicks off our National Poetry Month posts with an exquisite stroke of paint and prose. Cantando Naranjas y Limones (Singing Oranges and Lemons) written by María Nieves de Abajo Bajo and illustrated by Azita Golarai is, to put it simply, magical, vibrant, soft and picturesque. Continue reading

WWW: National Poetry Month

--From Academy of American Poets

–From Academy of American Poets

April is National Poetry month and oh dear readers have I got a web resource for you! (Full kudos to Katrina for the heads up on this web site). The Academy of American Poets has a fantastic web site dedicated to unfurling the world of poetry for inquisitive minds. I’m going to give you a quick run down of the web site and then link you to some Latino/a resources within this. As a learning tool, poetry offers children/young adults/everyone the chance to explore meaning and nuance behind language. Continue reading

¡Mira Look!: Dark Dude

dark dude book coverWell, it’s that time of year again: we’ve decided the sun should get up and go to bed later, the birds have decided to chirp their twitterpated spirits, slowly the flowers are stretching their stems and UNM is rounding the corner for the final sprint to the end of another semester. At Vamos A Leer, we are finishing up our section on Race in YA Literature and will be moving on to Poetry in Latin American Literature. Really though, most of what we do is undergirded by the daily race trials that Latino-Americans walk through, so rightly so, we are never truly ‘done’ with race. Continue reading

WWW: Book Challenges!

Katrina, Keira and I decided to take advantage of the numerous (and I mean numerous) reading challenges that go on in the blog world each year. This year we will be participating in 2 challenges. Continue reading