College basketball player Bronson Koenig, one of just 40 Native American students playing basketball at D-1 colleges, reported from Standing Rock earlier in the month. This is a beautiful and moving piece of writing that I can’t wait to get into the hands of my students. (Thanks to Teen Librarian Toolbox for the link.)
Travis Jonker and Mr. Schu produce one of my favorite annual best books lists. Start with #20 and count down with them to #1.
KidLitFrenzy’s Mock Sibert list always gets me reading (and buying too many books!) to catch up on the great nonfiction titles I missed during the year.
I spend much of my teaching reflection time ruminating on what went wrong and what needs to be improved for next time. I was glad to find a fellow ruminator in Colby Sharp and to read his lovely piece on a magical moment that went very right. And as a bonus, it featured my favorite illustrator, Erin Stead!
Book list lovers will find 31 days of goodness at Fuse#8. It’s hard to pick just one list to highlight here since they’ve all been so good (and led to my holds list at the library exploding. I was actually cut off. I didn’t know you could be cut off when you reached a certain number of holds, but I got cut off.), but I’m especially liking 2016 Books with a Message.
Another list I loved this week: Twenty 2016 must-have titles for Grades 4 and 5 from Carrie at There’s a Book for That.
Seven Impossible Things has a terrific interview with Hatem Aly, illustrator of The Inquisitor’s Tale.
Katie charts her awareness of and commitment to diverse children’s literature and encourages teachers to broaden and deepen their own reading lives to become more effective pushers of diverse books in their classrooms.
I have been thinking a lot about empathy and the failure of empathy, and I appreciated Tricia’s thoughtful post speculating that empathy fails when we teach kids and ourselves to devalue racial and ethnic identities.
Amy Rasmussen argues that our students’ identities and stories are central to their work as readers and writers in Better teaching: please tell me your story, a must-read post for everyone who teaches reading and writing