Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Nonfiction Wednesday

I'm continuing to work on my Kid Lit Frenzy Nonfiction Challenge 2013.  Right now I'm previewing lots of books about the Civil Rights Movement for my current unit.

The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles

african-american, biography, character-traits, civil-rights, nonfiction, nonfiction-challenge-2013, reading-gap-challenge-2013, social-studies-connections, spiritual

The Story Of Ruby Bridges
I liked reading this right after Through My Eyes. The prayer that Ruby repeated twice a day - before and after school - "Please, God, try to forgive those people. Because even if they say those bad things, they don't know what they're doing. So You could forgive them, just like You did those folks a long time ago when they said terrible things about you" - shows just how extraordinary she was. She reminds me of Anne Frank and the words she said in her diary, “In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death. I see the world gradually being turned into a wilderness, I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too, I can feel the sufferings of millions and yet, if I look up into the heavens, I think that it will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again.”

I haven't read much about Jackie Robinson, and quite frankly, I wasn't very excited to do so because I'm not a baseball fan. However, I was deeply moved by this biography by Jackie's daughter, Sharon Robinson. Jackie Robinson was an incredible person. I especially loved the evidence of his love and dedication to his wife and children. He was a gifted athlete, for sure, but he was so much more than that: family man, man of faith, pioneer, hero, an accomplished businessman, and a spokesperson for civil rights.

Rosa  Rosa by Nikki Giovanni, illustrated by Bryan Collier

I love Bryan Collier's illustrations in this beautiful book about Rosa Parks. I read it aloud today in all my classes. I love that Collier captures Rosa's quiet strength and courage. In the "Illustrator's Note" he said he depicted the heat of Alabama with the yellow, sometimes, dark, hue of the paintings and lit Parks's face up to show her radiance and elegance. Giovanni tells Rosa's story with graceful triumph.

What nonfiction books are you reading?