August 1, 2016
Thank you to all those who clicked on our School Library Journal and NCTE ads for The Martian: Classroom Edition (Broadway Books), featuring classroom-appropriate language, discussion questions and activities, and a Q&A with Andy Weir himself. With its compelling narrative and scientific content, the book is perfectly suited for both language arts and STEM curriculums. Additionally, our website and blog feature further resources to make teachers’ lives just a little bit simpler:
* An essay by Andy Weir and this interview in Education Week, which discuss the book’s ability to double as both novel and science textbook.
* A Teacher’s Guide aligned with the Common Core State Standards. Please email us for print copies.
* If you are a full-time teacher who is considering (or reviewing) the book for classroom use, please email us for a free review copy (while supplies last). Please note that this offer is only available to teachers; librarians, please feel free to share this offer with teachers at your school.
June 15, 2016
The Penguin Random House Creative Writing Awards, which annually present $112,000 in scholarships to fifty-six New York City public high school seniors for original poetry, fiction & drama, memoir, graphic novel, and spoken word poetry compositions, were held on June 7. Since 1994, more than two million dollars have been awarded to students and their schools by Random House, and now Penguin Random House, through this awards competition. In this twenty-third year for the competition, more than 1,300 entries were received from a number of diverse public high schools throughout the city’s five boroughs. (more…)
June 1, 2016
Historical fiction as a genre is powerful in its ability both to educate and to provide insight into the voices and experiences of those who came before us. Ruthanne Lum McCunn’s novel Thousand Pieces of Gold (Beacon Press) does just that, tracing the tribulations of Polly Bemis, a nineteenth-century Chinese woman who is sold into slavery and prostitution in America and who struggles against all odds to claim her independence. In McCunn’s adaptation of this true story, Polly’s father refers to his daughter as his treasure, his “thousand pieces of gold,” and his decision to sell her reveals the desperation brought on by intersecting historical forces in China at that time. What follows is an exploration of the value and dignity of human life as Polly perseveres and pioneers across the American frontier. (more…)
May 20, 2016
As the weather grows ever warmer (or should be, anyway), teachers across the nation are hard at work assembling summer reading lists for their students. The website Edutopia recently featured an article to help educators do just that, including Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Quirk Books) on their list of “Top Ten Young Adult Reads.” This fantasy adventure by Ransom Riggs tells the story of sixteen-year-old Jacob as he encounters the magical, macabre, and downright bizarre residents of a seemingly deserted island, including the enigmatic Miss Peregrine herself. Along the way, he learns a dark family secret and unravels a mystery surrounding his grandfather’s past. Riggs’s incorporation of vintage photography in the book adds a haunting and delightful visual element that only serves to further enrich the experience and spark readers’ imaginations. (more…)