Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Another type of Pilgrim

In the Dummerston book group, we discussed ways to teach children about Thanksgiving that get beyond the Pilgrim story. Here are some picture books that might help.

Have you read Molly's Pilgrim? It's a beautiful story of a Russian Jewish child trying to fit into her new American classroom. When the teacher asks the children to create a "pilgrim" or "indian" for a Thanksgiving diorama, she and her Mother create their own idea of a "pilgrim".

How Many Days to America? is another favorite book which reminds us that people still seek refuge in America.

The immigrant community is not very visible in our part of Vermont, however many Cambodians have settled in the Burlington area. Two stunning, gruesome, and difficult books about this community are First They Killed My Father and Lucky Child by Loung Ung who escaped the Killing Fields and came to Vermont. These are adult reads.

Thank You Sarah,: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving tells the tale of Sarah Josepha Hale's 38-year quest to make Thanksgiving a national holiday. Ignored or refused by administration after administration, she persisted until at last, President Lincoln, possibly persuaded by her argument that it would help to reunite the union, declared the fourth Thursday in November as a national holiday in 1863.

What Thanksgiving books do you use with students?

1 comment:

  1. I've just returned from my second trip volunteering in Cambodia. The country is still trying to recover for its recent History. I can also highly recommend these books:

    When Broken Glass Floats: Growing Up Under the Khmer Rouge by Chanrithy Him

    A Song for Cambodia by Michelle Lord (good for younger children, (age 8+)

    jeannine: waddleeahchaa.com