The Read Aloud Project was created by Priscilla Weddle and Marie Benner-Rhoades to provide homeschooling resources in peace and justice during the pandemic. For the project, members of the community record themselves reading children’s books about peace, courage and justice. The response from the community has been great and we appreciate those who have participated. If you are interested in recording a video for the project, please email Priscilla at [email protected]. Here are the books that were read for the project in May:
The Sandwich Swap by Kelly DiPucchio and Queen Rania of Jordan
Summary: The Sandwich Swap tells the story of best friends Lily and Salma. Lily likes peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, while Salma prefers to eat hummus on pita. The girls get into an argument because they think each other’s lunch is weird. Before they know it, a food fight breaks out at school. In the end, the girls try the different sandwiches and enjoy it.
Reflective Question: Have you ever swapped a sandwich with a friend? What is your favorite sandwich?
The Hello, Goodbye Window by Norton Juster
Summary: This book tells the story of a young girl who visits her grandparents. During this visit, the young girl explains the importance of one of her grandparents’ windows. The window inspires the young girl to use her imagination and allows her to greet and say goodbye to her grandparents.
Reflective Question: What would you like to see out of your own hello, goodbye window?
Marisol McDonald Doesn’t Match by Monica Brown
Summary: This story is about Marisol McDonald, a biracial girl, who marches to the beat of her own drum. After Marisol’s friend claims that she would never be able to match, Marisol takes this challenge and attempts to match for one day. The day Marisol decides to match is miserable. Marisol’s teacher explains to her that she is perfect the way she is, leading Marisol to realize that she does not have to match and should embrace who she is.
Reflective Question: What makes you unique?
Love Will See You Through: Martin Luther King Jr.’s Six Guiding Beliefs by Angela Farris Watkins
Summary: In this book, Martine Luther King Jr.’s niece Angela Farris Watkins talks about his six guiding principles and legacy.
Reflective Question: Which one of King’s principles is your favorite?
I Am Enough by Grace Byers
Summary: This book invites every girl to be herself and love herself, while honoring her differences from others. No matter who you are, you are enough.
Reflective Question: What do the children mean at the end of the story when they declare, “I am enough”?
Bear and Bee by Sergio Ruzzier
Summary: After waking up from hibernation, Bear looks for food and runs into a bee. He is afraid of bees because he thinks that they are terrible monsters. But he realizes that he was wrong and becomes good friends with a bee.
Reflective Questions: What might happen the next time Bear sees Bear? Will he still be afraid?
Greta and The Giants: Inspired by Greta Thunberg’s Stand to Save the World by Zoe Tucker
Summary: This book tells the story of Nobel Peace Prize nominee Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenager who has led a global movement to raise awareness about the world’s climate crisis.
Reflective Question: What things can you do to help Greta fight climate change?
The Name Jar by Yangsook Choi
Summary: The Name Jar is about a little girl named Unhei who moves to the United States from Korea. On the school bus, kids tease her because they cannot pronounce her name. After Unhei’s experience on the bus, she decides to choose an American name. Her classmates fill a jar full of names for her to pick. In the end, Unhei decides to keep her name and her classmates learn how to say her name.
Reflective Question: If you could choose your own name, what would you pick and why?
Helpers Win: Yucky-rus Virus by Kathy Fry Miller
Summary: This story is about a little girl and her family and how they are dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Activity: You may want to light a candle with your family and send a kind thought or prayer to someone you know who is sick or lonely or especially sad right now.
Something Happened in Our Town: A Child's Story about Racial Injustice by Marianne Celano
Summary: When an unarmed black man is shot by a white police officer in their town, two students, one white and one black, talk to their families to try to understand why it happened. Their parents tell them that they can make others aware of unfair treatment of others and make things better. The next day at school, the new student Omad is ostracized but both Josh and Emma stand up for him, starting a better pattern.
Reflective Question: What can you do to start a better pattern?