How One Classroom Used Todos iguales/All Equal to Inspire Social Justice

Todos igualesIn this guest blog post, educator Cindy Jenson-Elliott of the Nativity Prep Academy describes how she used Todos iguales/All Equal as an inspiration for her classroom’s social justice comic book project.

Engaging Students

As a teacher in San Diego’s only free private school for resource-challenged, first-generation college-bound students, I have the privilege of working at a school focused on social justice. Most of our students are English-language learners, and their parents have come to this country seeking a better life for their children. As a staff, we look for positive stories that teach about social change that comes through individual responsibility and action.  The book Todos Iguales/All Equal: Un Corrido de Lemon Grove/A Ballad of Lemon Grove by Christy Hale, uses corridos, ballads of social justice, to tell the story of the Lemon Grove Incident. In Todos Iguales/All Equal, Mexican-American parents successfully challenged the Lemon Grove school district’s policy of segregating Mexican-American from white children in 1930. It is a powerful story not only because students’ families around our nation continue to face discrimination today, but because parents stood up for their children’s rights against a powerful system and won. Continue reading

Descubriendo la Lectura Bebop Books Collection for Your Classroom Library

Reading Recovery Library

Descubriendo la Lectura, the reconstruction of Reading Recovery® in Spanish, has released levels for its newest title additions!

Lee & Low Books is proud to be the nation’s largest publisher of multicultural children’s books. With the launch of our new Descubriendo la Lectura Bebop Books collection, schools across the country will now be able to bring more equity, inclusion, and diversity into their classroom libraries.

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Where Is the Diversity in Publishing? The 2019 Diversity Baseline Survey Results

The Diversity Baseline Survey (DBS 2.0) was created by Lee & Low Books with co-authors Laura M. Jiménez, PhD, Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development and Betsy Beckert, graduate student in the Language and Literacy Department of Wheelock College of Education & Human Development

Lee & Low Books released the first Diversity Baseline Survey (DBS 1.0) in 2015. Before the DBS, people suspected publishing had a diversity problem, but without hard numbers, the extent of that problem was anyone’s guess. Our goal was to survey publishing houses and review journals regarding the racial, gender, sexual orientation, and ability makeup of their employees; establish concrete statistics about the diversity of the publishing workforce; and then build on this information by reissuing the survey every four years. Through these long-term efforts, we would be able to track what progress our industry shows over time in improving representation and inclusion. Continue reading

Lee & Low Books Signs Award-Winning Illustrator for Early Childhood Book Challenge

Early Childhood Book Challenge

Lee & Low Books has partnered with the William Penn Foundation and OpenIDEO on the Early Childhood Book Challenge to promote early literacy. Today we’re excited to share an update on the project: Continue reading

Watch the Webinar: Teaching About Slavery Using Lee & Low Children’s Books

Thank you to everyone who joined us last week for our webinar, “Teaching About Slavery Using Lee & Low Children’s Books”. If you missed it live, or just want to watch it again, here is a recording of the webinar:

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Classroom Books and Resources for Lunar New Year

Classroom resources for Chinese and Lunar New Year

Many countries celebrate the Lunar New Year, including China, Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Singapore, and Tibet. Lunar New Year celebrations also take place in the United States and around the world, held by people with heritage from these countries. This year, the Lunar New Year takes place on Saturday, January 25. How can you celebrate with students? Continue reading

Announcing Lee & Low Books’ 2019 New Voices Award Winner and Honor

New Voices Award sealNew York, NY—January 16, 2020—LEE & LOW BOOKS is excited to announce that Alana Tyson of Alexandria, Virginia, is the winner of the company’s twentieth annual New Voices Award. Her picture book manuscript, The Longest Swim, is the biography of William Goines and his journey to becoming the first African American Navy SEAL.

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Cover Reveal: JULIETA AND THE DIAMOND ENIGMA

A cursed diamond. A thief on the run. And one very busy young detective!

Today we’re so excited to reveal the cover for our upcoming middle grade novel, Julieta and the Diamond Enigma, by Luisana Duarte Armendáriz! A New Visions Award winner, this title will be out this May!

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Finding the Best Diverse Books for Your Classroom

High Quality Diverse Books

In this guest post originally posted at Achieve the Core, Jill Eisenberg, our Director of Curriculum & Literacy Strategy, shares resources and guidance for teachers on finding high-quality diverse texts and bringing them into the classroom. 

If you were asked to sum up your classroom library or read aloud collection with five adjectives, what would you say? Would the word “diverse” make the list?

Our classroom library bookshelves and mentor texts should feel intentional, purposeful, and transforming; to that end, many educators and administrators are eager to infuse more culturally responsive, multicultural, and inclusive stories into the classroom. It can be overwhelming to figure out where to begin with this process, however. As Director of Curriculum & Literacy Strategy at Lee & Low Books, I step into schools and districts to advise on the key components of a culturally responsive book collection and action steps required to evaluate current collections for equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Whether you survey your collection in grade-level teams, with parent volunteers, or on your own, this blog post will share some of the best resources and strategies we at Lee & Low Books have seen over the past thirty years from schools and districts across the nation. Continue reading

Sneak Peek: Lee & Low’s Spring 2020 Titles

It’s the start of a new decade, and what better way to launch into the new year than to check out new and exciting books coming out in 2020! Here’s a sneak peek of our Winter and Spring 2020 titles ranging from boogie-down picture books to magic-filled middle grade.

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Exploring Children's Books Through the Lens of Diversity