Tuesday, September 29, 2009

THe celebration continues...

Product DetailsMy Name is Gabito The life of Gabriel Garcia Marquez is another wonderful biography written by Monica Brown. Again, she did a terrific job portraying and talking about the amazing Hispanic writer in an authentic and accessible way for children to understand. I particularly enjoyed how Monica Brown discusses Gabriel's passion for stories...

"The more words Gabito learned, the more stories he told..."
"The more people Gabito met, the more stories he told..."
"The more things Gabito saw, the more stories he told.."

What a powerful way to send this message across: Gabriel Garcia Marquez was a storyteller, he was on one of the greatest writers in South America. He has written over 30 books including Love in the Time of Cholera, and his most brilliant novel One Hundred Years of Solitude. In 1982 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. Colombia and the rest of the world celebrates his success as a writer, novelist, and journalist.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

THe celebration continues...

My Name is Gabriela/Me llamo Gabriela (Bilingual): The Life of Gabriela Mistral/la vida de Gabriela Mistral
Here at My World/Mi Mundo we keep on celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month with books recommendations. Since it is Poetry Friday, I thought I will share this fantastic book about Gabriela Mistral, our first Latina Nobel Prize winner in 1945. This book titled My Name is Gabriella/Me Llamo Gabriella by Monica Brown talks about the love and passion that Gabriela had for words. This book is written in first person and describes Gabriela since her early years as a school child when she decides to change her name and teach herself how to read. Gabriela Mistral is actually the pseudonym for Lucila Godoy y Alcayaga. Then the book takes us when Gabriela becomes a school teacher. She was a very active woman in education in Mexico and Chile. Monica Brown captivated Gabriela's passion for expression and words really well through this book. As a teacher and as poet Gabriela encouraged children around the world to express themselves through writing and mostly, to follow our dreams. This book is the second book in the Luna Rising's bilingual biography series.

Gabriela Mistral is definitely one of our biggest pride in the South American Literature World. I want to celebrate Gabriela in our Poetry Friday and encourage anyone who wants to find out more about the life of this amazing woman to keep on reading. Trust me, she is an interesting person to discover. Here are a couple of interesting facts about Gabriela Mistral:

* Gabriela was born in Chile. Both of her parents came from Basque and Indian heritage.
*Her father, who was also a teacher, abandoned them when she was 3 years old. But before he left, he made a garden especially for Gabriela.
* At age 16, Gabriela started working as a teacher's aide so she could support herself.
* One sad event in Gabriela's life are reflected in some of her earlier poems like the suicide of her boyfriend in 1909. Most of her first poems are written to him. Gabriela's writing helped her cope with the sadness in her heart.
*Gabriela Mistral was the principal of an important school for girls in Chile.

These are just some basic facts about her. There are so many interesting stories to discover about Gabriela. During Hispanic Heritage Month, I wanted to make sure she has a page in My World/Mi Mundo.

"What the soul is to the body, so is the artist to his people." Gabriela Mistral

The Sad Mother
By Gabriela Mistral

Sleep, sleep my beloved
without worry, without fear
although my soul does not sleep
although I do not rest.

Sleep, sleep and in the night,
may your whispers be softer
than a leaf of grass
or the silken fleece of lambs.

May my flesh slumber in you,
my worry, my trembling
In you, may my eyes close
and my heart sleep.

Love Poetry Friday! Please stop by Susan Writes where Poetry Fridays round up will be! Have an excellent weekend!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Hispanic Heritage Month 2009

Please keep your eyes open for this book...

Coming up Fall 2009.
I'm expecting this publication by Children's Book Press to be another successful one! This is the story about the famous artist and muralist Diego Rivera told through his daughter's eyes Guadalupe Rivera Marin. I have always been a big fan of Diego Rivera's work but this memoir is adding a new dimension to the famous life of Diego. Please check out this sneak peek video about the book, I absolutely enjoyed listening to Diego's daughter. I especially enjoyed the story behind one of the unfinished paintings by Diego when he asked his daughter to pose with an orange but all she wanted to do was eat it!

I can't wait for this book to be in my hands. This memoir will be a wonderful mentor text to teach children to pay attention to photographs, paintings because there is always a story behind it, whether it comes from our own imagination or real life experiences. Even though I don't hold this book in my hands yet, I believe in Children's Book Press publication so much. Their books are some of the finest I have seen and I believe this one will fit right up with their rest of their publications.

In the meantime, if you would like to know more about this famous Hispanic artist, his life and work as an artist, I would also recommend Diego by Jonah Winter and Jeanette Winter. This biography ivery comprehensible for our students in grades 3 and up. Available in Spanish and English, published by Scholastic.
Diego: In English and Spanish

Monday, September 14, 2009

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!

My dear fellow bloggers, teachers and friends,

What an exciting month September is! Not only is the beginning of a school year, new adventures, new learning and new journeys but it is also Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15-October 15). Last year, I shared some details about this special month celebration. You can go back to that edition by clicking right here if you are interested in some basic facts.

One of the things that I love about this special month is the opportunity given to all of us to celebrate diversity in our world, in our classroom, in our school. It is up to each of us to ignore this month or to dedicate a couple of minute each day acknowledging this special celebration of cultures. It does not take a lot of effort or changes to our daily routine in order to make this happen. It can all start with a read aloud and followed it up with some discussion. With simple gestures and actions like this one, you can open a door of possibilities, of discussion, of appreciation and respect in your own classroom. Please understand that it is not necessary to have Hispanic students sitting in our classroom in order to celebrate this month. Remember that our students are citizens of the world, and it is our duty as educators to open up the world to them so they can live their lives with open minds and open hearts. Let's start that journey, shall we?

I would like to share with you a special book with you today. My Name is Maria Isabel by Alma Flor Ada. This is the story about a little girl named Maria who arrives at a new school when the year has already begun. Her teacher decides to call her Mary since there are already two Marias in the classroom. With this decision, came a string of problems for Maria because she did not respond to the teacher when she calls her. The problem is that Mary is not her name and her teacher is not understanding how special her name Maria is. Her name is more than a name, there is a story behind it, a special story about family and Puerto Rico.
When the teacher assigns a writing project entitled "My Greatest Wish" for the Winter Pageant, Maria sees this as an excellent opportunity to let her teacher know how she feels about her real name, the origin and special meaning it carries. Maria's Greatest Wish writing project is one that will get to your heart, without any doubt.
My Name Is Maria Isabel (An Aladdin Chapter Book)
I define this story as unforgettable, inspiring and touching. It captivates the Latino culture with beautiful language and interpretation. One of my dear friends and 1st grade teacher at my school, Michelle, reads this story to her class every year. She also gives her young students a chance to write about "Their Greatest Wish" and year after year, their stories are captivating and inspiring. I look forward every year to see that display on her classroom wall. Today I invite you to take Hispanic Heritage Month and celebrate it with the best ingredients anyone can ask for: BOOKS!

Enjoy the journey!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Celebrating Hispanic Month

Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15- October 15) is around the corner. It is very exciting and comforting to live in a country that values and appreciates other cultures. Hispanic Heritage Month is an opportunity to celebrate all Hispanics, their cultures and traditions. It is an opportunity to acknowledge all Hispanics that contribute and enriches this country by bringing their talents, their knowledge, their skills. My World/Mi Mundo will feel honored to share the work and talents of so many of these wonderful people. Stay tune this month for more information coming your way. For Poetry Friday I thought this book is a perfect choice for today. Mama Goose A Latino Nursery Treasury by Alma Flor Ada and F. Isabel Campoy is truly exactly that: A TREASURE. This book is packed with lullabies, jum-ropes songs, riddles, proverbs and many many songs! This book is a great introduction to Latino folklore, and the fact that this book is bilingual, written in Spanish and English, makes it accessible to everyone. Alma Flor Ada and F. Isabel Campoy are both distinguised Hispanic authors who deserve a round of applause for their contribution to enrich the literature experiences for all children. The illustrations done by Maribel Suárez complete their work in a beautiful way. Enjoy the journey and don't forget to stop by Crossover to fill your day with beautiful poetry.

Dos Palomitas

Dos palomitas en un palomar

la una se fue, la otra tambien.

Dos palomitas en un palomar

una volvio, la otra tambien.

Two Doves

Two little doves, next to each other.

One flew away, and then the other.

Two little doves, high in the sky.

One flew back home

then the other by and by.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Anything But Typical

Anything But TypicalAnything But Typical by Nora Raleigh Baskin stole my heart. I feel very lucky that this book landed in my hands. This story is about Jason Blake, a 12 year old boy with autism. The story is told by Jason, in his language, in his way, in the way he sees and perceives the world. Through this story, Jason let us in his world, the way people talk, the way he perceives them, the way most people don't wait long enough for the right answer to come out. Jason's world is anything but typical. As Jason tries to understand and cope in his world, he writes and shares his story online. Jason has a beautiful way with writing, he understands how writing works, how to develop his character, how to create an engaging plot. What Jason never imagined was that there is a someone on the other side of the online world reading his stories, enjoying them, and learning from him. Jason is starting to grow a strong online friendship with this person, who is a girl. But Jason's biggest fear is that this girl will only see his autism and not who Jason really is.

There are a couple of things that really impressed me about this book. Like I mentioned before the story is told by Jason, and you can "read" his thinking. He also presents the other side, what the other people are "thinking" or "doing." This type of description in the book makes it accessible for readers to be exposed and understand his world, and the things that people around him do that might help or might not help him. This book made me wonder of all the things we do as teachers in school that actually might not work or help a child. It brings a perspective that we are not usually exposed to. This book makes you want to read more about Autism and how to help children in the classroom. It makes me want to keep growing on my journey of understanding their world. I believe this book is a MUST for teachers. I strongly believe this. This chapter book is geared for students in grades 4-8.

As I am reading the authors' acknowledgments in the first page, I see that she is thanking Michael Moon, current president of the Autism Acceptance Project, who gave the author an amazing appraise for this book. If you are interesting in expanding your reading and understanding on Autism, you can read more about the Acceptance project right here.