GLOBAL READ ALOUD CHOICE 2021: YOUNG ADULT CHOICE #GRA21

Are you ready for the final reveal? So far I have shared the following choices:

In a world that is upside down, still, I have found myself reaching for fantasy books more and more. As a way to learn about our past and consider our future, the realm of fantasy allows us to escape, dig in, and dream of what can be. While the worlds may be unfamiliar, their messages are not and we can find comfort, hope, joy, even in the darkest parts of their stories. Our Global Read Aloud choices offer up hope in the most human way; tales of overcoming, tales of finding your own strength, tales or relying on community to come together in order to defeat a common enemy. It is what the world has shown us in the past year as well, it is what has kept many afloat, many alive. And so we shall gather around these books and continue to build community. We shall share these read alouds as way to connect across city lines, country borders, and oceans. We shall hopefully find similarities within the heroic journeys of the stories we read that let us see how we, too, can be heroes in our way.

WHAT IS INFORMATION YOU MAY WANT RIGHT NOW?

  • Kick off will be October 4th and the project will run for six weeks as usual, ending on November 12th. You can absolutely fall behind or start later, just don’t read ahead.
  • The official hashtag for the year is #GRA21, all other hashtags have been announced with their book selection.
  • The hashtag for this book will be #GRAElatsoe
  • Because the book is longer you can still choose to do a full read aloud or do it as a book study where you read some parts aloud and others are read in other ways. If the book is too long for you to fit into 6 weeks, you can always stretch it into further weeks or choose The Barren Grounds – the middle school choice – which would also be a great read for the young adult category.
  • For a comprehensive FAQ post, go here
  • To join the main Facebook group, please go here. To join the young adult Facebook group, please go here. This is where news will be posted for the most part. Following me on Twitter may also give you information.

SO WHAT IS THIS YEAR’S YOUNG ADULT BOOK….

Elatsoe—Ellie for short—lives in an alternate contemporary America shaped by the ancestral magics and knowledge of its Indigenous and immigrant groups. She can raise the spirits of dead animals—most importantly, her ghost dog Kirby. When her beloved cousin dies, all signs point to a car crash, but his ghost tells her otherwise: He was murdered.

Who killed him and how did he die? With the help of her family, her best friend Jay, and the memory great, great, great, great, great, great grandmother, Elatsoe, must track down the killer and unravel the mystery of this creepy town and its dark past. But will the nefarious townsfolk and a mysterious Doctor stop her before she gets started?

A breathtaking debut novel featuring an asexual, Apache teen protagonist, Elatsoe combines mystery, horror, noir, ancestral knowledge, haunting illustrations, fantasy elements, and is one of the most-talked about debuts of the year.

I first encountered Elatsoe after all of the accolades had been heaped on it and after reading it I get why the book world was abuzz with excitement for this book. It has quickly become one of my most recommended titles in my classroom and to other teachers. It combines some of my favorite components; a strong main character who is grounded within tradition and family, the supernatural that needs to be defeated, the strong ties to history and the invitation to conversation about how our past defines our present. I promise this read will not disappoint.

THE READING CALENDAR WILL BE AS FOLLOWS:

Week 1: Oct. 4th – 8th : Chapters 1 – 6

Week 2: Oct. 11th – 15th: Chapters 7 – 12

Week 3: Oct. 18 – 22nd: Chapters 13 – 18

Week 4: Oct. 25th – 29th: Chapters 19 – 24

Week 5: Nov. 1st – 5th: Chapters 25 -30

Week 6: Nov. 8th – 12th: Chapters 31 – end

Don’t worry about falling behind, just don’t read ahead and if you need to start later, please do.

Please consider following Darcie’s work on social media and supporting your local independent bookstores with your book purchases. If you want to support the Global Read Aloud, please consider purchasing your books through the links placed here, the GRA gets a small affiliate percentage whenever books are purchased through Bookshop.org – a website that sends orders through local bookstores.  If your school requires you to go through Amazon, please consider using this link to purchase the book in order to support the Global Read Aloud.

I hope you like these choices, and if not, that’s okay too, then come back next year.

GLOBAL READ ALOUD CHOICE 2021: EARLY READER’S BOOK CHOICE #GRA21

Are you ready for the next reveal? So far I have shared the following choices:

In a world that is upside down, still, I have found myself reaching for fantasy books more and more. As a way to learn about our past and consider our future, the realm of fantasy allows us to escape, dig in, and dream of what can be. While the worlds may be unfamiliar, their messages are not and we can find comfort, hope, joy, even in the darkest parts of their stories. Our Global Read Aloud choices offer up hope in the most human way; tales of overcoming, tales of finding your own strength, tales or relying on community to come together in order to defeat a common enemy. It is what the world has shown us in the past year as well, it is what has kept many afloat, many alive. And so we shall gather around these books and continue to build community. We shall share these read alouds as way to connect across city lines, country borders, and oceans. We shall hopefully find similarities within the heroic journeys of the stories we read that let us see how we, too, can be heroes in our way.

WHAT IS INFORMATION YOU MAY WANT RIGHT NOW?

  • Kick off will be October 4th and the project will run for six weeks as usual, ending on November 12th. You can absolutely fall behind or start later, just don’t read ahead.
  • The official hashtag for the year is #GRA21, other hashtags will be announced once all the books are.
  • The hashtag for this book will be #GRADragons
  • For a comprehensive FAQ post, go here
  • To join the main Facebook group, please go here. To join the early reader’s Facebook group, please go here. This is where news will be posted for the most part.

SO WHAT IS THIS YEAR’S EARLY READER BOOK….

Dragons in a Bag: Elliott, Zetta, Geneva B: 9781524770457: Amazon.com: Books
Dragons in a Bag by Zetta Elliott

When Jaxon is sent to spend the day with a mean old lady his mother calls Ma, he finds out she’s not his grandmother–but she is a witch! She needs his help delivering baby dragons to a magical world where they’ll be safe. There are two rules when it comes to the dragons: don’t let them out of the bag, and don’t feed them anything sweet. Before he knows it, Jax and his friends Vikram and Kavita have broken both rules! Will Jax get the baby dragons delivered safe and sound? Or will they be lost in Brooklyn forever?

Why Zetta Elliott had to decolonize her mind to write the children's book  Dragons in a Bag | CBC Radio

I have loved the work of Zetta Elliott for many years, her span is incredible and so is her immense power to draw us into her stories. She writes beautiful characters whose lives unfold in front of us while also leaving us wanting more. Jaxon is a hero navigating the world with courage, love, and resilience. He is a relatable young man whose quest to right wrongs is one that many kids can relate to and even better, it is the first book in a series so you can continue Jaxon’s adventures even after the GRA reads.

The reading calendar will be as follows:

Week 1: Oct. 4th – 8th : Chapters 1 – 3

Week 2: Oct. 11th – 15th: Chapters 4 – 6

Week 3: Oct. 18 – 22nd: Chapters 7 – 8

Week 4: Oct. 25th – 29th: Chapters 9 – 10

Week 5: Nov. 1st – 5th: Chapters 11 -12

Week 6: Nov. 8th – 12th: Chapters 13 – end

Don’t worry about falling behind, just don’t read ahead and if you need to start later, please do.

Please consider following Zetta’s work on social media and supporting your local independent bookstores with your book purchases. If you want to support the Global Read Aloud, please consider purchasing your books through the links placed here, the GRA gets a small affiliate percentage whenever books are purchased through Bookshop.org – a website that sends orders through local bookstores. If your school requires you to go through Amazon, please consider using this link to purchase the book in order to support the Global Read Aloud.

I hope you like these choices, and if not, that’s okay too, then come back next year.

Global Read Aloud Choice 2021: Picture Book Study #GRA21

This year, I am decididng to take things a little more slowly in order to really relish who the choices are. So little by little, the chosen books and authors will be revealed, I hope you don’t mind.

In a world that is upside down, still, I have found myself reaching for fantasy books more and more. As a way to learn about our past and consider our future, the realm of fantasy allows us to escape, dig in, and dream of what can be. While the worlds may be unfamiliar, their messages are not and we can find comfort, hope, joy, even in the darkest parts of their stories. Our Global Read Aloud choices offer up hope in the most human way; tales of overcoming, tales of finding your own strength, tales or relying on community to come together in order to defeat a common enemy. It is what the world has shown us in the past year as well, it is what has kept many afloat, many alive. And so we shall gather around these books and continue to build community. We shall share these read alouds as way to connect across city lines, country borders, and oceans. We shall hopefully find similarities within the heroic journeys of the stories we read that let us see how we, too, can be heroes in our way.

WHAT IS INFORMATION YOU MAY WANT RIGHT NOW?

  • Kick off will be October 4th and the project will run for six weeks as usual, ending on November 12th. You can absolutely fall behind or start later, just don’t read ahead.
  • The official hashtag for the year is #GRA21, other hashtags will be announced once the books are.
  • The hashtag for Duncan Tonatiuh will be #GRADuncan
  • For a comprehensive FAQ post, go here
  • To join the main Facebook group, please go here. To join the picture book author Facebook group, please go here. This is where news will be posted for the most part.

So who is this year’s picture book study….

Duncan Tonatiuh: Children's Author and Illustrator - UWM Libraries

This year’s chosen creator is Duncan Tonatiuh!

Duncan was born in Mexico City and grew up in San Miguel de Allende. He graduated from Parsons The New School for Design and from Eugene Lang College in New York City in 2008. His work is inspired by Ancient Mexican art, particularly that of the Mixtec codex. His aim is to create images that honor the past, but that address contemporary issues that affect people of Mexican origin on both sides of the border. His book Pancho Rabbit and the Coyote: A Migrant’s Tale is the winner of the 2014 Tomás Rivera Mexican American children’s book award. It is also the first book to receive two honorable mentions, one for the illustrations and one for the text, from the Pura Belpré Award for a work that best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in children’s books. The book was featured in USA Today, The Chicago Sun, The Houston Chronicle among other major publications because it deals with the controversial topic of immigration. His book Diego Rivera: His World and Ours won the 2012 Pura Belpré illustration award. It also won the 2012 Tomás Rivera. His first book Dear Primo: A Letter to My Cousin received an honorable mention from the Pura Belpré Award in 2011. It was named an Americas Award Commended Title and a Notable Book for a Global Society list.

Week 1:

Week 2:

Week 3:

Week 4:

Week 5:

Week 6:

Your Choice

I am so excited to dive into the fantastic world of Duncan Tonatiuh, there is just so much to uncover. Because Duncan has so many incredible books to choose from, you can also feel free to substitute other of his books in for the ones chosen above, some of his picture books are geared a little older so feel free to make the selections work for you. Please consider following Duncan’s work on social media and supporting your local independent bookstores with your book purchases. If you want to support the Global Read Aloud, please consider purchasing your books through the links placed here, the GRA gets a small affiliate percentage whenever books are purchased through Bookshop.org – a website that sends orders through local bookstores. If your school requires you to use Amazon to order the books, please consider using this link to place your order and support the GRA.

I hope you like these choices, and if not, that’s okay too, then come back next year.

Global Read Aloud 2021 – Yes, It’s Happening #GRA21

Image result for global read aloud

In June 2020, I wrote a post saying that perhaps 2020 would be the last year. for the GRA That after 11 years, perhaps it was time to say goodbye, end on a high note, move on to other things. Mired by the pressures of the world, bogged down by the usual emails and comments disparaging the choices of books, overwhelmed by the world, that decision felt like the right decision at that time. In June, 2020, I could not have imagined how I would feel now in February 2021, in a world that still feels extraordinarily heavy. That is still moving at a very slow pace as we look for small glimpses of hope in the form of a vaccine, in the form of brief moments of togetherness that has eluded us for so long.

And so as I sat across from my husband last night, celebrating our 16th wedding anniversary at home pretending to be at our favorite restaurant, he brought up research that is being done right now on the power of hope and having things to look forward to. That for the first time in a long time researchers are noticing that people are not planning for things in the long-term because COVID has bogged us down for so long. That we are not planning trips, we are not making plans in the future and that they wonder what not having things to look forward to will do to us as human beings. And it made me think once again about the power of the GRA. About the many emails, comments, and reach outs I received after announcing that 2020 might be the last year. How some of you told me that it was the one constant in your year, that it was one of the biggest things that you looked forward to, that there had to be some way to keep it going. And you kept telling me, periodically an email would show up asking if I had made a decision, would I reconsider? And I had been thinking of it, after all, due to COVID teaching I didn’t even get to do it with my own students this year, it felt unfinished in some ways.

And so last night I made the decision that I have been pulled toward for a long time. The Global Read Aloud will be back, albeit a bit more streamlined, but it will happen in 2021. I feel a bit like a flake, like I played with a lot of people’s emotions, but in June it didn’t feel possible, now it does. And I hope you can forgive me for that.

So a few changes you may notice for this year are:

  • There will be no sign up, just join the Facebook community or stay tuned to this website for updates. That way I don’t have to send out emails all of the time to all of the new sign ups.
  • There will be no voting. Having contenders meant a lot of people got mad when they didn’t feel the right book was selected, so this way it should feel more streamlined; if you don’t like the choice, simple, don’t do the GRA this year.

What is information you may want right now?

  • Kick off will be October 4th and the project will run for six weeks as usual, ending on November 12th.
  • The official hashtag for the year is #GRA21, other hashtags will be announced once the books are.
  • Books will be announced end of March, beginning of April.
  • I will continue to try to find books that speak to a broader world experience, whether set somewhere outside of the US or with a broader global appeal, I am still looking for suggestions, so please consider nominating books here

I hope you consider joining me again as we continue to connect around the world, as we continue to create larger conversations centered in understanding, in acceptance, in empathy. I am excited for another year of reading together, I hope you are as well. If you have other ideas or questions please leave them in the comments.

Stay safe,

Pernille