Earlier, we wrote about Black History Month.
In this blog, we want to share some great reading recommendations from one of our amazing sponsor members, Donna Schneider. Donna is an Assistive Technology Specialist and Bookshare Mentor Teacher. She gave us her list of teacher-recommended books to read and learn about black history. Some titles meet Common Core Standards, so please share them with other teachers and students.
* * *
Recommended Reading for Children
Free to Be You and Me by Marlo Thomas
Comics, songs, and the stories that give messages to young children about why they are in this world.
A Chair for My Mother by Vera Williams
A child, her waitress mother, and her grandmother save dimes to buy a comfortable armchair after all their furniture is lost in a fire.
Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman, Caroline Binch
Although classmates say that she can’t play Peter Pan in the school play because she’s black and a girl, Grace discovers that she can do anything she sets her mind to do.
Anansi the Spider: A Tale from Ashanti by Gerald McDermott
Anansi the Spider is one of the great folk heroes of the world. He is a rogue, a mischief-maker, and a wise, lovable creature that triumphs over larger foes. In this traditional Ashanti tale, Anansi sets out on a long, difficult journey.
The Drinking Gourd: A Story of the Underground Railroad by F.N. Monjo
A young boy and his father help a family of slaves escape to freedom via the underground railroad.
Sounder by William H. Armstrong
It was a horrible nightmare. The boy’s father was taken away by the sheriff, and his dog Sounder was hit by a shotgun blast. The boy has to save Sounder.
* * *
Recommended Reading for Adolescents and Older Readers
Through My Eyes by Margo Lundell and Ruby Bridges
Ruby Bridges recounts the story of her involvement, as a six-year-old, in the integration of her school in New Orleans in 1960.
My Brother Martin: A Sister Remembers Growing Up with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by Christine King Farris
Looks at the early life of Martin Luther King, Jr., as seen through the eyes of his older sister.
I Never Had It Made: The Autobiography of Jackie Robinson by Jackie Robinson
A straightforward yet inspiring story of what it took to be the first man of color to break into the white world of professional sports.
The Gold Cadillac by Mildred D. Taylor
Two black girls living in the North are proud of their family’s beautiful new Cadillac until they take it on a visit to the South and encounter racial prejudice for the first time.
Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor
A black family living in Mississippi during the Depression of the 1930s is faced with prejudice and discrimination, which its children do not understand. This text is listed as an example that meets Common Core Standards in English language arts in grades 6-8.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it, To Kill a Mockingbird became both an instant bestseller and a critical success when it was first published in 1960. Meets Common Core Standards in English language arts in grades 9-10.
Warriors Don’t Cry by Melba Pattillo Beals
In 1957, Melba Pattillo turned 16. That was also the year she became a warrior on the front lines of a civil rights firestorm.
A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry
“Never before, in the entire history of the American theater, has so much of the truth of black people’s lives been seen on the stage,” observed James Baldwin shortly before A Raisin in the Sun opened on Broadway in 1959. Meets Common Core Standards in English language arts in grades 11-12.
About the Bookshare Mentor Teacher Program
This program began in 2010 to support the nation’s top teachers and assistive technology specialists with training tools to engage educators, parents, and students in the effective use of Bookshare’s online accessible library and reading technologies. Over 500 educators and specialists have now joined the network and work in their local communities and schools to advocate for students with print disabilities. Bookshare Mentor Teachers also develop and share best practices with other teachers across the United States.