Written by: Chris Barton
Illustrated by: Don Tate
Published by: Charlesbridge/Penguin Random House
Released: May 3, 2016
Genre: Picture book
Length: 32 pages
Age level: 7-10
Grade level: 2-5
Meet Lonnie Johnson, a kid inventor from Mobile, Alabama. Growing up with 5 siblings was no easy feat as he shared space in a small house. His love and dedication for solving problems payed off when he was able to go to college and get a job at NASA. He designed things such as space probes for his job and homemade robots at home as his hobby and eventually came up with a water gun called the Super Soaker. However, life is filled with trials and good things rarely come easily. The story tells of disappointments and rejections. But Lonnie never gave up and with the support and encouragement of his family, he persisted.
Written by: Jacquitta A. McManus
Illustrated by: Brian Hardison
Genre: Early reader chapter book
Recommended age: 4-8
“Talee and the Fallen Object” is about a beautiful, brown skinned, eight year old girl named Talee who loves reading, writing, the color purple, wild puffy muffins, going on adventures, and her parents. She lives on the planet Gala which has two moons and enormous, flying animals called Calpas, which are used as modes of transportation.
Written by: Claressa Swensen
Illustrated by: Alena Paklina
Recommended age: 2-6
Written by Marilyn Singer
Illustrated by Josee Massee
Published: Penguin Books
Pages: 32 pages
Recommended age: 6-10
Every civilization tells stories that explain how the world began. These stories are called myths. Some of the most popular myths were created by the ancient Greeks. Echo, Echo is a children’s book that introduces children to Pandora, archne, Athena, Zeus, King Midas, Bellerophon, Narcissus, Pygmalian, Aphrodite, and many others. The author creatively marries poetry and Greek mythology. It is called echo because each myth is told by a poem that basically echoes or reverses the first poem.
Written by: Susan Hood
Illustrated by: Sally Wern Comport
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books
Ada Rios lived in a town filled with garbage. Each day she would watch the garbage trucks pour out garbage into the landfills and watch the recyclers search the garbage to see what trash would become their treasure. She grew up with her mom, dad, sister and Grandmother Mirian. Her family loved music. Her grandmother sang rock and rock tunes and her dad would listen to the radio and name the instruments played. Grandma signed up her granddaughters, Ada and Noelia for music lessons with Favio Chavez. But they discovered there were not enough instruments for all the students. Mr. Chavez asked Mr. Gomez to help him make instruments from recycled trash. He made violins, cellos, flutes, and guitars. And so the recycled orchestra was born.
Our hearts bleed thinking about families being separated at the border. We ask ourselves is this the America we know and love? If we are honest, families being separated is very much part of our history since slavery, but it doesn't have to be our future. How can we teach our children to be part of the solution and not part of the problem?
We recommend literature. Read not just to learn more, but to be unable to ignore the problems around the world. The following books tell tales of those who not only persisted in knowledge and purusing their dreams but they resisted those who said it couldn't be done.
The Baseball counting book by Barbara Barbieri McGrath
Oh my gosh! It not only teaches you to count, it not only teaches you about the game of baseball, but it also rhymes, my favorite type of picture books!! You have to be so talented to do math, sports, and poetry!!!
H.O.R.S.E. by Christopher Myers
H.O.R.S.E is simple, you miss you get a letter. First person to spell out the complete word loses. In Jamaica, we call this game D.O.N.K.E.Y.and in some part of the world they call it G.H.O.S.T.
Bat’s Big Game by Margaret Read MacDonald
Another book about soccer? Well it's World Cup season, so it is fully appropriate. I thought men’s soccer wasn’t doing so well in the US and that it was just the women who were keeping the game alive. At least that’s what I overheard on the radio.
Speaking of hearing, ever heard the saying you can’t have your cake and eat it too? That’s kind of the message of this book. Everybody wants to be a winner. But you have to choose a side. What side will it be? Loyalty and commitment are two important traits to being a good sportsman.
The Princesses have a ball by Teresa Bateman.
Not your typical fairytale. No princess is saved by a doting prince. Instead these girls move. These are the kind of girls I wish I was. The kind of girls who know how to have a ball! I love the diversity of the illustrations, the mystery and unpredictability of the plot. I love the message it conveys to girls who are strong, beautiful, brave, and respectful to their parents, especially when he is King. I also love that the girls get new shoes!!! Sorry you have to read the book yourself to find out what happens!