Quality Multiculture Books

Title Notes Themes Genre Author Publication Date
A Young People s History of the United States Any of the following collections of People s Stories:
A Young People s History of the United States, Vol. 1: Columbus to the Spanish American War. Rebecca Stefoff and Howard Zinn Harcover 2007

A Young People s History of the United States : Class Struggle to the War on Terror Volume 2. Rebecca Stefoff and Howard Zinn Harcover 2007

A Young People s History of the United States. Rebecca Stefoff and Howard Zinn

A People s History of the United States Abridged Teaching Edition. updated by Howard Zinn 2003

The Twentieth Century: A People s History. Howard Zinn 2003

A People s History of the United States 1492-Present. Paperback by Howard Zinn 2009

A People s History of the United States, Vol. 2 The Civil War to the Present Teaching Edition. Paperback by Howard Zinn 2003

A People s History of the American Empire. Paperback by Howard Zinn 2010
multicultural nonfiction multicultural Rebecca Stefoff and Howard Zinn 2009
Anahita s Woven Riddle Set in Northern Iran in the 1880 s Anahita is informed that at this time next year she will be old enough to wed. She doesn t want to be married to someone that doesn t match what she is. From her love of riddles she decides that it must be someone the enjoys riddles and if they do, then they would be able to solve the riddle that she would weave into her rug. However, not everyone thinks her idea is a very good one. The story is set during a year of controversy between her family, tribe members, and even herself as she struggles with her decision set in the 1880 s of Northern Iran. Suggestion while reading - As the characters are introduced in the book take notes on what the character traits are for each character - what they value, and what they believe. Use the notes about the character to predict what their interpretation of the riddle might be. How do your ideas compare with the answer to the riddle that each gives in the book? How does each character s personality match their interpretation of the riddle? Iran nomads family marriage eternal love multicultural fiction realistic historical Meghan Nuttall Sayers 2006
Code Talker: A Novel about the Navajo Marines of World War Two A story told in American Indian oral narrative style about Ned Begay and a group of Navajo men that were taught in a boarding school and were then recruited by the Marines to become code talkers in World War II. Great story and very good read if the didactic preachy tone is overlooked. World War II North American Indian troops Navajo language cartography Marine Corp multicultural historical fiction Joseph Bruchac 2005
Down the Road Picture story about a young girl who begs her parents to let her go to the store on her own. When she does instead of coming home with eggs she ends up with apples. A very touching story where the parents deal with a problem in a most creative and appropriate way to foster growth. parenting making the best of a worse situation classroom management families apples African American black experience multicultural picture book realistic fiction Alice Schertle 1995
Elijah of Buxton Elijah of Buxton is the first freeborn child of Buxton a settlement on Lake Erie in Canada created by escaped slaves in the mid 1800 s. Elijah tells the story of his ordinary life who his momma is continually telling him that he is too frag - ile. However, as we travel with him as he does his chores, does odd jobs in the settlement, interacts with the characters that have become central in his life, and of course going to school we find that Elijah is not an ordinary boy at all. He has a gift of story telling and creative exaggeration with explanations that achieve and surpass the best metaphors and similes penned by even the classic tall tale authors of all times. While the literary style and tone is expertly done with subtle events and happenings being wove together for a powerful climax the plot is agonizingly slow moving. The first chapters are more like short stories tied together with the passing of time and Elijah s struggle for recognition as an adult as his values and character is discovered by the reader. It might be a good read aloud, but I wonder how many young readers will maintain enough interest to read through most of the book. It isn t until the reader is closing in on the end that the plot finally unfolds a multi chapter event with enough excitement to propel the reader to a compelling ending. An ending that can only be achieved by a character who has gained enough insight into the complicated decisions of an adult world and a reader that has gained insight into the complications of slavery in the United States in the 1860 s. race African American black experience multicultural slave male historical fiction Christopher Paul Curtis 2007
Flip-Flop Girl What does it feel like to loose your best friends? What is it like to have to move to another city and school? Can a teacher and classmates make a difference or will loneliness, fear, and apprehension cause the main character to flip flop and change her life in a negative way forever? Katherine Paterson, award winning author, has again written a story that captures the loneliness and painful thoughts and emotions of three socially immature youth - Vinnie, Mason and Lupe. Does she create the time needed and support characters - such as an empathetic teacher willing and able to intervene? Can unequal treatment of unequal students be realized so sufficient and appropriate support can be provide until these students understand and learn how to become a healthy part of their world? Moving, school, relationships, fear multicultural realistic fiction Katherine Paterson 1994
Forge Sequel to Chains
Story continues with Curzon, 15, separated from Isabel and happenstance has him enlist to serve as a free man in the Massachusetts Regiment of the Continental Army. Were assigned to guard the river until General Burgoyne surrendered, then they were sent to Valley Forge for the winter. Arriving to a muddy field they were ordered to build a cabin and had to survive with very meager provisions. Another unlikely encounter brings him face to face with his previous master, Bellingham, and of course, Isabel, where both are reunited as slaves. Their strained friendship is rebuild with urgency on the discovery of the eminent sale of Isabel. With the assistance of his fellow soldiers a new plot to escape put into motion as the Continental Army marches out of Valley Forge.
Interesting style with the use of historical snippets of information taken from personal letters, newspaper articles, and other historical documents inserted at the top of pages where they fit chronologically with the fictional story. Adds historical credibility to the tone of the story.
Sequel continues with Ashes
Valley Forge American Revolution Pennsylvania multicultural slavery historical fiction Laurie Halse Anderson 2010
Glory Be Summer of 1964 in Moss, Mississippi, had Glory Hemphill eager to turn 12. However, everything is out of sorts. Is it the new girl from the North? The debate on whether to keep the segregated public pool open? Or the fact that Glory can t make up her mind? She has got to figure out what should be what. A real-life memorable story about family, friendship, and choices that aren t easy. multicultural fiction realistic historical multicultural Augusta Scattergood 2012
Grandfather's Journey Story of a man who visits the U. S. and learns to love it. He has a daughter who grew up in California by the San Francisco Bay. However, when the girl was nearly grown he misses his homeland of Japan and returns. After awhile he wants to return to America, but the war stops him. He never returned, but his grandson does. Supported with beautiful color paintings with a Japanese style.
immigration Japan multicultural family nonfiction picture book Allen Say 1993
Heart of a Samurai Manjiro and four friends encounter a terrible storm and find themselves ship wrecked and stranded on an island (1841). barely surviving on the small island an American whaling vessel arrives and offers to take them aboard. Since Japan forbids foreigners to visit or Japanese to return home once they have strayed from the country, the Americans tell them that it is impossible for them to return to their homes in Japan. Eventually Manjiro and his countrymen arrive in the U. S. He is amazed by what he saw. He was determined to learn and return home. He learned English and navigation by being a harpooner and raised money panning for gold in California. It took him ten years before he returned to japan only to be thrown in prison as a spy. However, after being freed, American warships arrived in Edo Harbor. Seeing the end of Japan s 250 years of isolation the Shogun called on the man that he knew English and of American culture. It is an amazing tale about a boy who was born into a low class and because of Japan s non mobile class system would have never had a chance to become a member of the exalted class of Samurai. However, because of his luck and assistance he was given the honor of samurai by the feudal lord.
He joins a whaling vessel where he travels the seas for ten years learning about foreign lands and different cultures. He sustains himself with a dream of returning home and becoming a samurai. Based on the true story of Nakahama Manjiro. An remarkable life story and interesting historical cultural information.
historical fiction mid 1800 Japan United states multicultural relations Nakahama Manjiro historical fiction Margi Preus 2010
Hold Fast to Dreams Andrea Davis Pinkney tells a powerful story about good and bad relationships between people and particularly this family of four. The setting is a Connecticut town and the plot is about a black family that moves into this town of Wexford where everyone is white. Pinkney tells their struggle to belong by describing the characters experiences and feelings as they go about their daily lives at school, work, and in the community. The tone and style that is totally realistic and believable, without succumbing to the use of sensationalism, yet compels you to read and leaves you with an emotional transaction and understanding of the character s feelings as they struggle to find a place. African American black experience multicultural prejudice, family relationships, black and white relationships excellent read realistic fiction Andrea Davis Pinkney 1995
Julie The Sequel to Julie of the Wolves.
Julie returns to her father s Eskimo village, struggles to find a way to save her beloved wolves in a changing Arctic world ,and she falls in love with a young Siberian man. She sees the problem as a conflict between the old Eskimo way (old rule), and the White or Minnesota way (new rule). A very insightful message is told as Julie struggles with her wolves and another pack to save them from starvation. In this struggle the reader can learn that survival of the fittest may not be a law of nature. That maybe nature is united in a harmony of life sustained by balancing the needs of the living with the needs of the environment. A profound insightful and respectful story of an Arctic culture.
wolves native Americans Eskimo environment nature multicultural for the good of all fiction realistic historical Jean Craighead George 1994
Lizzie Bright and The Buckminster Boy HIstorical fiction about race relations and injustice resulting from prejudice in a 20th century small Maine town. The main character struggles to deal with several conflicts beyond the obvious prejudicial ones as he grows to manhood. Black and white relations, minister s son and trying to fit into an adolescent culture, male and female, life and death, family responsibilities and personal desires - good and bad. The author s use of language makes a powerful story even more powerful with numerous insightful descriptions:
... you never touched a girl before? or you never touched a girl with black skin? I never even talked to someone with black skin. ... well never mind you re holding up your end just fine.
...seemed about as surprised at each other as new hope drying a last tear.
- Books can be fire. Books can ignite fires in your mind, because they carry ideas for kindling, and art for matches. ... - Should a minister s son be reading this? Who better.
... everything in the world rejoices in the touch, and everything in the world laments in the losing. And with his hand still on the whale he...
A must read for every middle school child in America.
slavery injustice stereotypes prejudice Maine history 20th century minister Phippsburg race human relations multicultural moving family friends clergy historical fiction Gary D. Schmidt 2004
Madlenka Ingenious, wondrous, and visually stunning. You will want to read it slowly and repeatedly.Madlenka lives in New York City and has for all her life. She knows everyone on the block and everyone knows her. They are from different countries so come along with her as she goes for a walk around her block and you will believe you walked around the world.
multicultural fiction picture book historical fiction Peter Sis 2000
Meet Danitra Brown Two bubbly vivacious young girls are the center piece of this marvelous collection of poems that fit together within this volume. It is beautifully illustrated in warm dreamy oils that stir feelings of hope and goodness the two girls have about being black, female, and confident, as well as family, friendship, art, and education. African American black experience multicultural relationships, friends poem collection poetry picture book Nikki Grimes 1994
Mufaro s Beautiful Daughters Mufaro has two beautiful daughters. Manyara with a bad temper and selfish when Mufaro isn t present. Nyasha kind and considerate to people and animals. The King requests all worthy and beautiful women appear before him so he might choose a wife. Mufaro decides both his daughters should go. Manyara, believing herself more worthy and beautiful than her sister, sets out first so she will be presented to the king before her sister. When she enters the King s chambers she runs out crying that there is a monster in the room who said he was very displeased with her. When Nyasha arrives and bravely enters the room, she sees her friend, a small snake from her garden. Where upon he transforms before her and tells her he knows of her kindness and is pleased with her. So she becomes queen and Manyara a servant for the queen. A traditional folk tale characterization and plot. Illustrations are richly textured and very colorful in the medium of ink and watercolors depicting expressive people and events with their costumes, artifacts, flora, and fauna that enhance the story and show the reader the traditional culture of Zimbabwe, Africa. Cinderella African folk tale multiculture romantic justice revenge Zimbabwe fiction fairy tale folk John Steptoe 1987
Number The Stars Story of how Annemarie Johannese (10) and her family harbors her best friend Ellen Rosen in Denmark as the Danish resistance and population smuggle Jews from Nazi occupation to Sweden. Action packed adventure that captures the intensity and seriousness of what the characters were attempting and the Danes actions during World War II. World War II, Jewish, holocaust problem solving multicultural historical fiction Lois Lowry 1989
People Spier begins with an explanation of the vast number of people on the Earth, that they come in all sizes and shapes, in many colors, even the different parts: ears, noses, lips, hair, and that they all began life as very small. He goes on to illustrate different clothes, customs of play, tastes, varieties of homes, pets, things people like doing, ways of communicating, celebrating, their foods, work, being rich, poor, powerful, weak, different social organizations, and that we all must die. The book has a reference book appearance that is well illustrated and colorful as well as a story running through it with a powerful theme of difference and diversity makes the world an exciting place that is consistently change which we are all a part of for a limited time. people culture differences multicultural nonfiction multicultural Peter Spier 1980
Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry
African American black experience multicultural historical fiction Mildred Taylor 1978
Shoes, Shoes, Shoes 28 Illustrations of shoes from around world. mathematics patterns multicultural picture book Morris, Ann 1995
Sunrise over Fallujah Robin Perry who felt compelled to enlist as a result of his experiences of 9-11 joins the service and is sent from Harlem to Iraq in 2003 as a member of the Civil Affairs Battalion. Robin nicknamed Birdy by his comrades - Marla: a tough talking wisecracking blonde gunner and Jonesy, a guitar-player who just wants to open a blues club become comrades in arms. This trio struggles to find meaning in their service to secure, stabilize and win the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people. Robin s time there profoundly changes him as his innocence and intentions of good will are overcome by a need to survive and question why he is there. An important book that offers insight to the intense relationships and profound implications that result during a war and more specific for today s youth - Iraq. Irag war 2003 African American black experience multicultural human cost of war historical fiction Walter Dean Myers 2008
The Big Book for Peace An anthology of stories for the purpose to contribute to the celebration of peace. While there have been numerous books and stories that celebrate war and acts of violence there have been less that celebrate ideas and actions that contribute to the maintenance of peace and a peaceful state. This book is an initial start to initiate a change in this condition with stories that one after another powerfully tell a story of discoveries of peace. Peace multicultural anthology realistic fiction Ann Durell & Marilyn Sachs 1990
The Cay Adventure story of Phillip (11) who lives on an Island with his mother during World War II. His mother decides to move back to the safety of Virginia and he is separated from her during when the ship they are on is sunk. He sustains a head injury that results in his lose of sight and wakes to find himself on a raft with a black man - a member of the ship s crew and a big tomcat. Days on the raft and months on a deserted island have Philip loosing his prejudice and learning to deal with his sightlessness. A great adventure story and story about overcoming fears. Survival race black experience multicultural adventure realistic fiction Theodore Taylor 1969
The Dream Bearer A story about a family that centers on a father - son relationship and finding ones place in the world that balances family and cultural histories with the realities that a young adolescent faces in his present world to create his own life. Intriguing three stories within the story told the dream bearer and how they relate to David s life and suggest directions he might choose. Includes great imagery... It was as if sadness had just come in and was living with our family. (36) and ... When I dream of him sometimes I think I see him peering through his darkness looking for something he ain t never seen. And it makes me laugh, and sometimes I think I see it and it fills my cup with tears.
father son African American family Harlem New York mental health great imagery. African American black experience multicultural fantasy fiction Walter Dean Myers 2003
The Forgotten Door A genre linked between fiction and science fiction. A story of a rural American family with family members who are strong minded and caring for all living things. The family is immersed in a maelstrom of action that descends upon them when they befriend a young boy who appears to have amnesia they fin lost in the woods. In their desire to reunite the child with his family they discover his unique abilities. He seems to communicate with animals, jump six foot fences, and communicate with mental telepathy. Trusting too much in the goodness of humans, it isn t long until his abilities attract attention from unsavory elements in our society who would take advantage of his abilities for their selfish benefit. Shortly before it is too late the Bean Family recognize that their attempts to protect the boy may be far to limited to protect themselves and the child. Incredibly fun to read aloud with its fast paced action packed thrilling plot that listeners won t let you stop until you get to the surprising heartwarming end. A truly cutting edge plot for its era. Peace helping humans multicultural aliens space visitors science fiction Key, Alexander 1986
The Rabbits Allegory of colonization told with the viewpoint of native animals. A group of rabbits arrive with unfamiliar ways - new food, new animals, new houses, and begin to dominate the environment and the previous inhabitants. "They chopped down our trees and scared away our friends and stole our children..." colonization rabbits indigenous people multicultural caring picture book
The Road to Paris The struggles of a biracial girl in a predominantly white town. Her mother has left her often enough that she and her brother are part of the system. Changing from home to foster care back and forth, but at least she has always had her brother, David, However, this time was going to be different. The system was separating them. A story told with the intensity and feelings that is becoming associated with the writing of Nikki Grimes. 153 page story about the struggle, growth, and empowerment that Paris attains when conditions finally provide her the support necessary for her to be able to take risks and seek positive change. biracial broken home runaway mother growing up accepting self concept multicultural realistic fiction Nikki Grimes 2006
The Sandwich Swap Picture book - two girls trade sandwiches at lunch and start a school event. friendship multicultural realistic fiction picture book Kelly DiPucchio 2010
The Sign of the Beaver Outstanding historical fiction about a Matt (13) who travels with his father into the frontier to clear land, build a cabin, and begin to set up their family homestead. When the father determines that he can not wait any longer to fetch his wife and younger children he leaves Matt to await his return. While he is away his return will be delayed till the coming spring. Matt unaware of what lies ahead has a mishap with bees and is saved by Attean and his grandfather (Native Americans). Matt wants to give the boy his book Swiss Fmaily Robinson , but the grandfather has a better idea. He wants Matt to teach Attean to read. Neither of the boys are thrilled with the arrangement, but over the subsequent days that exend into the winter and spring the boys build a strong relationship where Attean teaches Matt Native American ways that become critical for his survival and Attean learns English and how to read. An accurate slice of history and a tribute to humanness that when individuals are involved in shared experiences they can overcome prejudices. Native Americans prejudice multicultural historical fiction Elizabeth George Speare 1983
The Slave Dancer During the the 1840 s in New Orleans Jessie Bollier is playing his flute in the market. Afterward he is kidnapped and smuggled out to sea. Later he discovers his reason for being targeted is so he can play while the human cargo of slaves exercise on the ships return trip from Africa. Fox uses Jessie s experience to write about the atrocities that befell slaves on board such ships as they are transported to America. Not only does she write about the conditions of the slaves, but about the thoughts and feelings of the sailors who were willing or unwilling participants in this passage. While the story is realistic fiction and very plausible up to the ending. It is a children s book which usually requires a positive ending, however there are situations toward the end that move from plausible toward maybe possible. Still an easy read for middle school, a history everyone should know, and a story with a compelling plot and well developed characters where their struggle with their circumstances provide important insight into human nature. Prejudice African American black experience multicultural slavery historical fiction Paula Fox 1973
The Snowy Day This book was the first book in main stream America that had an African American as a main character. Besides this historical significance the book is has relevance with young children that have experienced a first snow and sharing that experience and relating it to how it was communicated as a story in this book with pictures and text. How did it naturally unfold as a story with a beginning, middle, and end? How did the author add some style to make it more interesting and more of a story? Further explorations of the story elements of plot and style can be explored where the author sets up a surprise or interesting situation by having the main character put the snowball in his pocket. Would most children laugh when he put it in his pocket? How does that style affect the tone of the story? It was an event that readers could predict to add interest and possibly humor. Further discussion related to science experimenting with water and ice and exploration of the different tracks that the boy makes. How did he make them? Can you show how each was made? Can you show me how a snow angel is made? Can you design tracks of your own to challenge others how they might be made? A delightful story with historical significance, and colorful illustrations that can studied by children and used as examples for creating their own illustrations. Snow African American black experience multicultural tracks in the snow science solids liquids water cycle fantasy fiction picture book Ezra Jack Keats 1962
The Witch of Blackbird Pond Kit was raised in Barbados by her grandfather after her parents died when she was 3. His liberal ideas afforded her an education, encouraged her to be a free thinker, and allowed her to explore her environment which included the beaches where she learned how to swim. On her grandfathers death she was left without a home and headed north to New England where her Aunt lived in a very Puritanical community. Kits life is dramatically changed from one of leisure to having to learn how to endure a way of life that is demanding physically and mentally with structured thinking that she rebels against. Among those she befriends is Widow Tuper who is an eccentric lady that lives by herself. Anyone familiar with the history of New England and the witch trials can foresee a conflict in the making. The author writes about this historical time period with eloquent detail of the environment, the artifacts, and the religious and philosophical differences that people capable of questioning and taking risks surely were wondering about if they weren t capable to speaking up. Fortunately Kit is willing to take action and she is able to find cohorts of similar mind willing to risk action for positive change. Courage Conn. America multicultural religious persecution witches historical realistic fiction Elizabeth George Speare 1958
Vive La Paris Esme Tai Codell is a master of the story. She has done it again. A story about a young girl Paris, whose father is a drummer, and wants all of his children to be able to play an instrument, sends her off to piano lessons with one of her brothers. While Paris s relationship with her piano teacher is central to the story so too is her family with five brothers and a few classmates of hers and her brothers. These characters are intertwined in a powerful story about abuse, bullying, dreams, being Jewish in World War II and concentration camps. Out of which comes an inheritance accompanied by a deeper understanding of human nature that enables Paris to make decisions that all people make to help one another. Powerful use of language to create a beautiful story. bullies holocaust brothers and sisters family African American black experience multicultural Jewish realistic fiction Esme Rai Codell 2006

Dr. Robert Sweetland's Notes ©