Raising Star Readers is delighted to drop in again on Deb Andries and her Reading Team as they celebrate diverse new offerings from Deb’s local library. Here’s how Deb describes the books that are helping to bring her joy:
Reading remains a joy. Reading remains a treasured moment and a teachable moment. Reading is shared.
Joyful reading occurs when the twins, Myles and Hayes, now 14 months, make every attempt to “sit” and “eat” the book! However, the joy also occurs when I hear them babble and attempt to mimic and repeat the rhythm of a nursery rhyme or associate the picture with the word or text on the same page. They love picking and choosing books, opening them (and quickly closing if left alone!); they also love “sitting” to spend individual and twin time together on Grammy’s lap. Lately we’ve enjoyed a plethora of board books from Grammy’s basket and their own shared treasured books from their brother’s collection.
My biggest shout-out goes to Thomas St. Angelo Public Library in Cumberland, Wisconsin. They have curated a number of new books in their collection, all of which highlight diversity. I was fortunate to access titles including Dancing Hands by Margarita Engle (illustrated by Rafael López); A Map into the World by Kao Kalia Yang (illustrated by Seo Kim); Tomorrow Most Likely by Dave Eggers (illustrated by Lane Smith); Taking Time by Jo Loring-Fisher; and Catch That Chicken! by Atinuke (illustrations by Angela Brooksbank).
Grayson, Finley, and I shared Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry (illustrated by Vashti Harrison). As we know, seeing ourselves and others in books is an opportunity to invite shared conversations around how we are different yet all alike.
One particular story, Where Are You From? by Yamile Saied Méndez and illustrated by Jaime Kim, generated discussions around how children in other regions and from different ethnicities refer to their grandparents. We also shared and talked about how we all “belong” to someone, somewhere, and the importance of sharing our stories of belonging and the “place” we are from.
The joy of sharing treasured moments in books, borrowed and curbside pick-up in the days of the pandemic, mean our opportunities to grow are unlimited as I share windows and mirrors with my loved grandchildren.
Bookology is always looking for new Reading Teams to help us celebrate the joys of reading aloud together. Contact Lisa Bullard for further information if you’re interested in participating.