Friday, September 20, 2013

Read Aloud Roundup: September 2013

Yesterday was the first Read Aloud session of the school year! The books we used for the K-5 classrooms and the discussion questions are included below. You can click on the links for summaries, reviews, and more.

The feedback I received from the reader volunteers was positive overall; we have a few new faces as well as some that have been with the program for more than a decade. We also had a couple of unexpected absences, so my wife stepped in to cover the 5th grade session. She said they had a good conversation about beauty norms and judging a person by more than appearances.

K - Willow’s Whispers, by Lana Button
Opening: practice quiet voices and louder voices. Practice whispering and ask about how it feels to whisper.
What might people think about a person who whispers? What might they think about a person who speaks loudly? Is one of the two better? (Is it always better, in many different situations?)

Opening: talk about animals -- their favorite kinds, what animals they might see in the city, and some wild animals. Who knows what a zebra looks like? How about a hippopotamus?
Why did the hippopotamuses tease Hector? How do you think he felt?
What was different about Hector’s new herd?
Do you think your school is more like the first herd or the second? Why?

1 - Dear Primo: A Letter to My Cousin, by Duncan Tonatiuh
(glossary in the back)
Charlie and Carlito write letters to each other. How else do people communicate when they are far apart?
What things about the cousins’ lives are similar? What things are different? Why?
If you were to write a letter to someone in another country, what would you tell them about yourself? What would you want to know about their life?

(glossary in the back)
What do you notice about the illustrations in this book? How do you think they were made?
When people live far apart, how can they show that they love each other?
If you could have a wish granted on your birthday, what would you wish?

What did you learn about the different people in the story? How are they different and how are they the same?
Were there any words or ideas you didn’t recognize? (prompt with “jeepney”, “cassava”, etc.) How could you find out more?

Do you believe that Rink and his family all had special talents? Why or why not? What kind of story is this?
Why did the other children stay away from Rink? Why was Angelina different?
What does it mean to have a “green thumb”?

What do Americans traditionally eat on the Fourth of July? Why is it a special day?
Do you think the narrator is right when she says, “No one wants Chinese food on the 4th of July”? Why/Why not?
What do you think the narrator learns by working in her family’s store? How does she help them?

(glossary in the front)
Are you good at waiting, at being patient? If you had to sit still for an hour and couldn’t touch anything with your hands, what would you do?
Why do you think Nadia worried about the mehndi?
What did Nadia’s grandma mean when she said “it’s as if I’m looking at my past and the future at the same time”? (Do you think Grandma was ever a flower girl? Do you think she had a flower girl at her own wedding? Who could it have been?) Why does that make Nadia happy?

Opening: talk about sports -- their favorite and different ones they know. How about famous athletes?
What does it mean to “set goals for yourself”? How do we do that? Why was it important to Hank’s mother?
What is a compromise? How did Hank and his mother reach a compromise? What might have happened if he hadn’t asked her if he could play ball?
Why was Hank’s record important?

The story tells about how a tradition started in the author’s family. Is there anything (or any tradition) in your family that has been passed down from an older generation? If not, what would you like to pass down?
Can you name your mother’s or father’s parents? (That’s a rhetorical question; no need to call out anyone who can’t.) How far back can you go? How could you find out more?
Was there anything about the story that surprised you? (The author was surprised, too, when she did her family research.) What do you think about it?

Izumi likes to touch and look at things that many people find disgusting or frightening. Why do you think she is like that? How does it set her apart?
Why do her parents worry about her? Do you think they are correct in their perceptions?
When the characters communicate in poetry, how is it different from everyday writing?

What do you think happens next? What does Izumi do in her life?

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to (I was already pointing people at Amazon, so this seemed like a logical step. Still my own opinions! Buy anywhere you like, or head to your local library.)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be civil to other commenters.