"I have always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library." ~ Jorge Luis Borges

Thursday, February 26, 2015


 A book about a stutterer who finds his voice.

 A book about finding your passion 

despite nonbelievers 

who make you feel broken.

A book about a promise whispered

and a promise kept.
I read A BOY AND A JAGUAR over the summer and instantly knew this was a book I wanted to share with my students, but when? It turns out this week was the perfect time.  Why?

Kick off World Read Aloud Day (March 4th!).
World Read Aloud Day is a global literacy initiative. What better way to demonstrate the power of story then with a book about a stutterer who finds his voice and uses it to help those who don't have a voice.

Put those Mock Caldecott Judges Back to Work
C├ítia Chen's illustrations are beautiful and moving and my students, who have just spent time  as Mock Caldecott judges, certainly appreciated them.

Let's Keep the Book Award Train Moving
Schneider Family Award Books provide an opportunity to talk about building compassion and understanding and thinking about supporting each other as a community of learners. Schneider Award Books honor an author or illustrator for a book that embodies an artistic expression of the disability experience.

Make a Classroom Connection
The second graders study Jane Goodall and her experience with the chimpanzees mirrors Alan Rabinowitz's experience with the jaguars.

Put the Focus Back on Community
We've just celebrated out 100th day, which means we have 80 more days of learning together ahead. This book provides an opportunity to talk about being a member of our community of learners.

Reading this book with all of my second and third graders was a powerful experience.  We always finished the story by asking why Alan Rabinowitz thanked the jaguar. It was a week a memorable discussions. If you read this book with students, don't forget to read the back flap. There's important information there. As a side note, the parent volunteers made a point of telling me what a moving and important a story it is. They doesn't happen often!