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10 Great Picture Books To Learn About Africa

10 Great Picture Books to Learn About Africa

When my kids studied Ghana in 2nd grade, one frustration for their teachers was that the kids had impression of Ghana as a rural environment. They didn’t really get to experience or understand that Ghana also has cities. I wasn’t able to find enough books on Ghana to make a book list, so I’ve included picture books set in The Gambia, Mauritania, Malawi, Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, and Tanzania on a variety of diversity themes.

What books on Africa do you recommend? Thanks for sharing!

10. Boundless Grace by Mary Hoffman, illustrated by Caroline Binch

Grace’s parents are divorced and her father moves to Africa where he re-marries and starts another family. Grace is nervous to go all the way to The Gambia with her grandmother; it’s so different from what she knows. There are sheep the roadside and the market is filled with open air stalls. Though she feels like she doesn’t fit in at first, her step family is kind to her. She realizes that her unconventional family which isn’t what she reads about in books, should be in one. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

9. Deep in the Sahara by Kelly Cunnane, illustrated by Hoda Hadadi

The people in Mauritania, West Africa are Muslim and the women wear a malafa. Lalla wants a malafa too but but it’s not for beauty, or to be mysterious, or to look like others, or to be like royalty. When Lalla hears the evening call to prayer, she realizes the malafa is so that she can pray like the others. And then she gets a malafa of her own to go to the mosque with her mother. A malafa is for faith! [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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Diverse Children's Books

Featuring a Character with a Disability

Our theme for today’s Diverse Children’s Books linkup is Diverse Book(s) Featuring a Character with a Disability. (Need ideas? Check out past winners of the Schneider Family Book Awards.) (The theme is only a suggestion. Diverse posts on alternate topics are always welcome.)

What Is #DiverseKidLit?


Diverse Children’s Books is a book-sharing meme designed to promote the reading and writing of children’s books that feature diverse characters. This community embraces all kinds of diversity including (and certainly not limited to) diverse, inclusive, multicultural, and global books for children of all backgrounds.

We encourage everyone who shares to support this blogging community by visiting and leaving comments for at least three others. Please also consider following the hosts on at least one of their social media outlets. Spread the word using #diversekidlit and/or adding our button to your site and your diverse posts.

DiverseKidLit

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Boston Freedom Trail for Kids, American Revolution Books for Kids

American Revolution Books for Kids & Boston Freedom Trail Guide

Boston Freedom Trail Book List for Kids

Follow the brick road! It’s not the yellow one though! The red brick line denotes Boston’s Freedom Trail.

This is my second time on the fifth grade end of the year field trip on Boston’s Freedom Trail. This year’s trip is slightly different as the Boston Tea Party ship was under repair and only just recently back in port.Boston Freedom Trail Book List for KidsIt booked up before we could get a slot so the children acted out a trial for the Boston Massacre instead at the Old State House museum.

Old State House Museum and Boston Massacre SiteRead more…

Top Ways to Teach Kids to Give Back

Top Ways to Teach Kids to Give Back

In this increasingly self-absorbed world where people can spend more time staring at a screen then they can communicating with each other face to face, it’s getting more and more important to teach children the importance of doing good in the world. As well, with the growing number of natural disasters, terrorist attacks and other conflicts and issues, in addition to the fluctuating economies around the world, there seems to be more people who need help than ever before.

If you’re keen to teach your children to donate to charities, volunteer their time, raise money for a good cause or otherwise help someone who needs it, read on for some ways you can encourage them to do good today.

Top Ways to Teach Kids to Give Back Read more…

My Very Short Diversity Picture Book Videos

My Very Short Diversity Picture Book Videos

I’ve been making very, very short picture book videos on my YouTube channel. I only have 47 subscribers, so if you would subscribe, I’d be very grateful!

I made over three dozen picture book videos so far of newly published books, but I picked these five diversity books to highlight today.

5 Wonderful Diversity Picture Books Made Into a Very Short Video

Mamá the Alien by Rene Colato Lainez, illustrated by Laura Lacamara

The confusion of being a legal alien versus an alien from outer space makes its bilingual Spanish picture book the perfect conversation starter about the naturalization process. MAMA THE ALIEN by Rene Colato Lainez, illustrated by Laura Lacamara. ♫ Background song, Englishman In New York by Sting. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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A Multitude of Concussions

A Multitude of Concussions

I’ve become well versed in teen concussions after my oldest, Grasshopper and Sensei, had four concussions over a period of fifteen months from club volleyball. Also, PickyKidPix had a soccer teammate with two severe concussions; her older sister had a concussion so bad that she had to quit soccer altogether. I’ve teamed up with that mom, Mary Lou, to bring you what parents should know about concussions in children and teens.

My daughter is number 9. She plays libero, a defense specialist.

Our Concussion Story

volleyball and concussion

First Concussion

In retrospect, my daughter’s first concussion was a mild one that I didn’t realize was a concussion. She tried out for club volleyball team in December of 2015 where she took at least one hard ball to her head from girls serving the ball at high speeds. She had a headache for two days and then she was fine.  We didn’t go to the doctor at all.

Second Concussion

Her head coach of her volleyball club team called me to tell me that she had failed his concussion test. He wasn’t the coach at her practice when she took a very hard ball to the side of her head that had shanked off a teammate. He noticed that she didn’t look quite right during practice and gave her the test. She wasn’t able to recalling the words he’d given her in the correct order.

This was April 2015 at her MGA Club Volleyball practice. Her symptoms included memory loss, headache and light sensitivity. She missed about a week of school but the following week was spring break. When she was home, she had to stay off screens and she was bored and restless. She cocooned for that week at home, unhappily.

During that vacation, she took an intensive 40 hour art class at Mass College of Art. My boxing trainer advised drinking a lot of water to help bring down the swelling in the brain. After her week of art class, she returned to school full time and seemed fine. Read more…

Diverse Children's Books

What Is #DiverseKidLit?

Our theme for today’s Diverse Children’s Books linkup is Favorite International Book(s) for Children. Share your favorite book or books that take place in a different country than where you live! (The theme is only a suggestion. Diverse posts on alternate topics are always welcome.) This is my pick:

Magic Trash: A Story of Tyree Guyton and His Art by J. H. Shapiro, illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton

MAGIC TRASH: A Story of Tyree Guyton and His Art. He literally turned trash into art to save his decaying Detroit neighborhood. And it worked. The Heidelberg Project is more than 30 years old.

Visit this remarkable public art display in Detroit or online at www.heidelberg.org.

 

What Is #DiverseKidLit?


Diverse Children’s Books is a book-sharing meme designed to promote the reading and writing of children’s books that feature diverse characters. This community embraces all kinds of diversity including (and certainly not limited to) diverse, inclusive, multicultural, and global books for children of all backgrounds.

We encourage everyone who shares to support this blogging community by visiting and leaving comments for at least three others. Please also consider following the hosts on at least one of their social media outlets. Spread the word using #diversekidlit and/or adding our button to your site and your diverse posts.

DiverseKidLit

Read more…

10 Great Books on China for Kids

10 Great Books on China for Kids

We’re creating a Multicultural Children’s Book Day eBook of diversity book resources. Twenty-two bloggers and authors are contributing their best diversity lists to help educators and parents find the books they need: All Done Monkey, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of UsThe Educators’ Spin On It, Franticmommy, Growing Book by Book, Imagination Soup, InCulture ParentThe Jenny Evolution, Jump Into a Book, Kid World Citizen, Uma Krishnaswami, The LogonautsMama Smiles, Marie PasticheElsa Marston, The Measured Mom, PragmaticMomRandomly ReadingWhat Do We Do All Day?, and Youth Literature Reviews. Proceeds from this eBook coming out this fall will be used to donate books to teachers and parents.

At my kids’ elementary school, our second grade spends part of the year studying China. These are my favorite ten books to learn about China, both past and present. It’s a mix of nonfiction and fiction, and also different genres covering picture books, early chapter books, and a graphic novel.

What books am I missing? Thanks for your suggestions!

10 Great Books on China for Kids

10. Mei-Mei Loves the Morning by Margaret Tsubakiyama

Experience life in modern-day China with Mei-Mei, her grandfather, and her bird as they spend the morning on biking through the streets of an urban city in China. First stop is a chat with a cobbler on the street. Then, it’s off to the park for tai-chi. The lao-bing man’s stall for pancakes is their last stop before heading home. Filled with multigenerational warmth, Mei-Mei’s sh0ws kids that life in other countries has the same gentle rhythms of eating, exercising, and playing as their own. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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How a Math Teacher Changed Peter H Reynolds' Life

How a Math Teacher Changed Peter H Reynolds’ Life

Most of us swoon at the mention of picture books The Dot or Ish, making Peter H. Reynolds a household name among those of us who love children’s books. But did you know his twin brother, Paul Reynolds? Together, they are the co-founders of Fablevision and they also write books together.

For any child who doubts the artist inside, read them The Dot, and its sequel Ish. And if you want to see authors and illustrators create their own dot, check out Celibri-Dots.

 

The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds

Finding the artist within can be as simple as making a dot; even when made in anger! How to turn the agony of a blank sheet of paper into an piece of art! This book is dedicated to Peter H. Reynolds’ math teacher who dared him to make his mark … more on that below. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Ish by Peter H. Reynolds

This companion book to The Dot takes the idea of a frustrated almost-artist a step farther. Sometimes art is in the eye of the beholder. Perhaps hyper-realistic renderings are overrated? Reynolds tries to dissuade the idea that art is not necessarily limited to technical drawing skills. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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