Monday, January 2, 2017

FLYING LESSONS & OTHER STORIES

I'm back! Hope everyone had a safe and happy New Year's and I wish you all the best in 2017. Today I'm featuring another Diversity Monday.





Flying Lessons & Other Stories, edited by Ellen Oh (January 3, 2017, Crown Books for Young Readers, 240 pages, for ages 8 to 12)

Synopsis (from the bookjacket):  We need diverse stories. Whether it is basketball dreams, family fiascos,  first crushes, or new neighborhoods, these stories celebrate the uniqueness in all of us. Award-winning and bestselling middle grade authors Kwame Alexander, Soman Chainani, Matt de la Pena, Tim Federle, Grace Lin, Meg Medina,  Walter Dean Myers, Tim Tingle, and Jacqueline Woodson are joined by newcomer Kelly J. Baptist in this anthology partnership with We Need Diverse Books, edited by Ellen Oh. From ten distinct authors come ten unique stories ready for flight.

Why I recommend it: Providing diverse stories for our children (whether it's so they can see themselves, or so they can develop a better understanding of others) is more important than ever in these troubling times.  And these ten stories by a diverse group of middle-grade authors are accessible, fast-paced, and filled with memorable characters. They can be read in little sips (one story at a time) or big gulps (several at a time). They can be read in any order.

I believe that diversity should include more than different racial backgrounds, so, while all these stories are important, I'm also grateful for Walter Dean Myers's story about a boy on a wheelchair basketball team, and Tim Federle's story about gender identity.

Favorite story: These stories are all so fine and so well written that I had a hard time picking out a favorite. Read them all! (However, I admit I may be a bit partial to Kwame Alexander's intriguingly-titled story in verse, "Seventy- Six Dollars and Forty-Nine Cents".)

Bonus: This is an excellent read-aloud for classrooms or at home, and the perfect conversation-starter with your kids about diversity.


We Need Diverse Books website

Find other diverse children's books at: Pragmatic Mom and The Logonauts



17 comments:

  1. This compilation sounds great with the impressive list of authors and their diverse stories. Thanks for sharing and welcome back for another year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Greg. It really is an impressive book.

      Delete
  2. Wish there were more books like this when my daughter was growing up. I so agree with you on the need for them. Happy New Year, Joanne!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Natalie. Happy New Year to you too.

      Delete
  3. I want to look for this one! It sounds great. I actually love reading short stories and don't do it enough.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know what you mean, Andrea. This is one of the few compilations of short stories I read in 2016.

      Delete
  4. Definitely sounds like an interesting read! Thanks for sharing it with us! Wishing you a Happy New Year too! :)
    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wish there were more books like this when I was teaching. I taught mainly in multicultural schools and my students would have appreciated a book like this one. I've been heartened to see the range of diversity among authors and themes in recent years. This is something we writers and educators must vigilantly protect.

    ReplyDelete
  6. PS, where did you find your "I support Diversity" badge?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you mean that button at the bottom that says, "I Support We Need Diverse Books", simply visit their website: weneeddiversebooks.org

      Delete
  7. This sounds like a book I need to get my hands on! :D

    ReplyDelete
  8. I recently saw another review of this book. Sounds like I need to get my copy. Love the concept.

    ReplyDelete

YAY for comments! I read and appreciate each one and I always try to answer. All opinions welcome. Let's have a conversation.