Sunday, February 12, 2012

Multicultural Resources and Texts: Just a Click Away!

      Are you looking for some multicultural book selections that you can pull up on your computer in just a couple of clicks? You do want to add a little spice to read aloud time up by showing an electronic version of a trade book text on your computer projection screen? I have found some gems for you!

     Two of my favorite and FREE sites for online trade books is Tumblebooks and the We Give Books Foundation.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba
(Dial, 2012) 

     This true story is about a boy named William who is fourteen years old and lives in Malawi. At the time, the people of his village were struggling with a drought and losing their crops. William overcomes great challenges by going to the library and studying how he could recycle materials that he had access to in order to create a windmill. This windmill brought electricity to William's village and became a hero to his community. This book is based on the adult version of the book with the same name, which was a New York Times bestseller.

The Hallelujah Flight by Phil Bilner 
(Putnam Juvenile, 2010)

     Here is a video "sneak peek" about The Hallelujah Flight that was constructed as a project by fourth and fifth grade students at Caldwell Heights Elementary School in Round Rock, Texas. Here's the YouTube clip: 

Tumblebooks - This site is a subscription site. However, if you go to Williamsburg Regional Library website (in Virginia), they have a subscription to the site, and you can enter the site by clicking on the library's name here.

Here are a just a few samples of the various titles that you can find on Tumblebooks:

Bebe Goes Shopping by Susan Middleton Eyla
(Sandpiper, 2008)

     This rhyming text shares a visit to a grocery store between a toddler and his mother. If you visit Harcourt Brace's official page for Bebe Goes Shopping, you will be able to see and share a bilingual dictionary based on language from the text. For those of you who love to share how authors and illustrators draft and plan their real work, there are draft illustrations that you can share with the children as well.  Tumblebooks also has a games page to go with this text. You can play Spell Hop and Word Search in addition to watching and listening to the book. 

Suki's Kimono Written by: Chieri Uegaki and Illustrated by: Stephanie Jorish
(Kids Can Press, 2005)
   Suki's favorite thing to wear is her kimono, and she is proud to share her love of her culture and memories she shared with her obachan (grandmother.) Her enthusiasm leads her to share about a special dance with her classmates. Suki's has the best first day of school ever because of her pride of sharing her culture. You can look at the book through Google Books as well.  

I Love Saturdays y Domingos
Written by Alma Flor Ada and Illustrated by Elivia Savadier
(Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2004)

     The granddaughter in this book is surrounded by the love of both sets of her grandparents on the weekends. On Saturdays, she visits with her grandparents on one side of the family, and on Domingos (Sundays), she visits the grandparents on the other side of her family who speak Spanish. Alma Flor Ada has written numerous children's books that celebrate Hispanic culture. Be sure to check out more of her titles at her website and the library!

   Here is a bonus! One of my favorite sites about early literacy, Reading Rockets, which is from WETA, the PBS station in Washington D.C.  This video is an interview posted by Reading Rockets and it is a little over 13 minutes long. It gives great insight into how she learned English and became an author. Be sure to explore her many other texts for a great author's study of her style of crafting writing. 

    Reading Rockets also has an excellent section to celebrate Black History Month, which you can explore by clicking here. There are additional video interviews with authors, book lists, activity suggestions, and sources of background information. Be sure to bookmark and explore the bounty of information here. :)


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