What research do you do on the authors?

I review biographies on the authors to ensure that the stories they tell either reflect their own lived experiences or reflect learning they have gained through dedicating their time to those communities. 

Have you read all the books on this site?

I have read all the picture books on this site and most of the middle grade books. Of the middle grade books I have not yet read, I have read multiple and extensive reviews on each of the texts.

Why did you record videos of yourself teaching?

On this site, I include several videos that I made for teachers in my school district during the pandemic. I was a District ELA coach during the 2020-2021 school year and recorded over 150 videos. It's important to keep in mind that these videos were for a specific purpose and time period. I was responsible for finding diverse anti-racist/anti-bias texts, writing lessons that matched the reading strategies that were required in our District Curriculum and recording/editing the lessons. I was doing this work at a very fast pace, producing at least 6 recorded lessons per week. Although I'm proud of my work, had I had more time, the quality (and script) would have obviously been better. :)

How do you choose which communities to represent?

I strive to represent people from marginalized communities. I'm purposely choosing to prioritize voices that have not been prioritized historically. 

What age range do you suggest?

Although this resource supports elementary ages, I believe all these titles can be used at any grade level, including secondary. When the book is particularly impactful in a primary classroom (K-2), I note in the description, "Emergent Reader Strategies." I think reading Emergent Reader books to older kids is also a fantastic way to increase engagement and begin diving into research in a specific area. For example, the book, "Home Grown," on the Action page, is a true story that gets kids thinking about community service projects that they can research and support or inspire them to start their own.

What are mentor texts?

Mentor texts are books that teach many skills in social justice, reading, writing, science, math, social studies, art, etc. This website includes books I've used as mentor texts to teach the Social Justice Standards and K-5 Reading Standards.  

Book covers images are from publishers and in the public domain