The 57 Bus, Dear Martin, and The Hate U Give

If I can say one thing for certain about 2017, it’s that it was a great year of publishing in the world of books written for young adults. Besides the many great books that I read (and continue to) with a 2017 publication date, The 57 Bus by Dashka Slater, Dear Martin by Nic Stone, and The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas continue to pull me back to them. These three novels not only contain powerful stories, exceptional writing, and contemporary settings but also tie in with each other as if they were meant to be. If they all came from the same publisher I’d say it was planned. For whatever reason they came about in the same year, I’m glad. And I’m also glad to have had the opportunity to read each of them. There are links to each of the books and authors through the text above where you can find reviews, summaries, and other information. What I wanted to share in this post, other than my excitement for these three titles and authors, are the resources you can use with the young people you care for. Though I have not had the opportunity, I would love to listen in on […]

The March Against Fear

Ann Bausum has written another excellent piece of literature with her text: The March Against Fear: The Last Great Walk of the Civil Rights Movement and the Emergence of Black Power It’s a compelling read informing readers about James Meredith and the March Against Fear. Kirkus has a wonderful review if you’re interested in reading more about the text.  This post was written to highlight the PBA (performance-based assessment / project-based assessment) I’ve created to accompany the text and it is accessible to you via the link below! The PBA includes three options for use: 1. A menu in which students choose three projects to make a tic-tac-toe. 2. Two lists requiring students to choose one project from each of the lists. 3. One list of projects requiring students to choose one to complete. The March Against Fear PBA In addition, there are some excellent resources to accompany the text including: Publisher Learning Guide Classroom Suggestions from the Author James Meredith and the March Against Fear National Archives Documents The Visual Imprint of James Meredith by The Black Film Center / Archive The Bob Fitch Photography Archive via Stanford Libraries Please comment on this post or message me if you’ve […]

Book Reports / Book Projects / PBAs

I’m happy to let you know that I’ve been working through many of the book reports and performance-based assessments / project-based assessments I’ve created since my undergraduate degree in order to update and reformat them. All of the PBAs include student choice as well as a range of activities designed to meet the interests of diverse groups of students. Enough are now revised that I’m ready to share a few with you! All of these projects are aimed at middle school and/or high school students. Please download what you find useful and share with anyone else who may be interested. I’ve provided you with three free below however funds are always appreciated as this work is done on my own time. Please consider purchasing through Teachers Pay Teachers or making a donation via the button provided at the end of this post. Amaryllis by Craig Crist-Evans Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett Sold by Patricia McCormick Finally, many of these projects would be suitable in a public library environment as a reading challenge for youth in middle or high school. If you have a book you’d like projects for or you simply want something reformatted, please email me! I’m happy to contract out my time and efforts. Happy […]

Revolution: The Sixties Trilogy

I wrote about Countdown by Deborah Wiles back in February of 2017 and am pleased to share a few resources for Revolution, the 2nd in the Sixties Trilogy by Deborah Wiles. While this documentary novel took me a bit longer to finish, I enjoyed it almost as much as the first in the series. I found the middle of the novel to be a bit slow however the storyline picked up once I reached the third part of the book. Revolution also steps it up a notch in terms of the maturity of the content included. I appreciated this as most of the readers of this novel would be older than they were for the first in the series and they would be building off of their prior knowledge. Just as the first novel did, this one includes a variety of primary documents throughout the text. This is one of the things I liked most as it asks readers to look into the time period and seek out information about the actual events of the time. I believe these novels would fit in well in any middle school or high school library collection. Additionally, these would be a great addition to a course […]

Countdown: The Sixties Trilogy

Having recently finished Countdown by Deborah Wiles, I wanted to share that I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this documentary novel. It is the first of The Sixties Trilogy and is so fascinating because though the story is fictional, there are primary documents including photos, advertisements, song lyrics, and speeches interspersed throughout the book. I’m anxious to read Revolutionary (the second) next once my library hold arrives! I believe these novels would fit in well in any middle school or high school library collection. Additionally, these would be a great addition to a course on the 1960s. Have you created a course like this for middle or high school? Email me, I’m working on one! To the resources: Scholastic Book Discussion Guide – includes discussion questions, post-reading activities, an author interview, and websites for additional learning. Countdown PBA (performance-based assessment) – This PBA was created to give students a choice of activities to complete after reading Countdown. There are three different set-ups for this PBA. The first uses the tic-tac-to method of project choices (requires students to complete 3 activities), the second utilizes lists (requires students to complete 2 activities), and the third gives students a choice between all the […]