Out Now: Nacho’s Nachos: The Story Behind the World’s Favorite Snack

Nacho's NachosToday, we’re excited to celebrate the release of our new picture book biography, Nacho’s Nachos: The Story Behind the World’s Favorite Snack, written by Sandra Nickel and illustrated by Oliver Dominguez.

This delicious picture book biography sheds light on Ignacio Anaya, who is credited with inventing nachos! Ignacio, nicknamed Nacho, was born in Mexico in 1895, and became head waiter at the Victory Club in Piedras Negras, right across the Rio Grande river from Eagle Pass, Texas.

One afternoon in 1940, during the Victory Club’s quiet hours between lunch and dinner, a regular customer walked in with three friends. They wanted a snack–something new, something different. Nacho rushed to the kitchen and improvised with what was on hand: corn tortillas, cheddar cheese, and jalapeño peppers. In that moment, Nacho’s Special, the dish that later became known simply as “nachos,” was born!

Check out the Nacho’s Nachos Story Time Activity Kit and find activities to do with kids like:

  • Draw your dream nachos. What ingredients would you include
  • Create a banner declaring your love of nachos.
  • Follow Nacho Anaya’s original nachos recipe to get a taste of “Nacho’s Special”

Celebrate with us by eating nachos this week on Instagram. Post a photo of your nachos with the hashtag #nachosnachos and tag @leeandlow to be entered to win a copy of the book!

Listen to debut author Sandra Nickel talk about creating Nacho’s Nachos, and explore additional activities to go with the book at TeachingBook.net.

 

Join Our Webinar: Strategies for Building an Inclusive Bookshelf

How do we build a book collection that reflects our children, our values, and our world? In difficult times, books offer an important outlet to young people—but making the right books available is essential. If you’ve ever wondered how to take action in diversifying your library but don’t know how or where to start, you’re not alone.

Join us for a webinar on Tuesday, August 18th at 4:00 PM EDT as we walk through some of the steps to creating a truly inclusive collection. We will use our newly updated Questionnaire as a guide for identifying gaps in our shelves, and share resources for finding and evaluating diverse books. We are also proud to announce the launch of a Spanish version of the questionnaire just in time for the start of the school year.

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Out Today: She Was the First!: The Trailblazing Life of Shirley Chisholm

Today, we’re so excited to celebrate the release of our new picture book biography, She Was the First!: The Trailblazing Life of Shirley Chisholm, written by Katheryn Russell-Brown and illustrated by Eric Velasquez.

Shirley Chisholm, a woman of many firsts, was an unforgettable political trailblazer, a candidate of the people and “catalyst of change” who opened the door for women in the political arena and for the first Black president of the United States.

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Watch our Webinar with EmbraceRace: Finding and Reading Great Stories with Kids

In this webinar, Literacy Specialist Katie Potter joins EmbraceRace in conversation about how to find and share books that develop kids’ racial and social justice sensibilities and help them become the community members our increasingly multiracial democracy needs. You can watch the recording of the webinar here.

Not sure where to begin your search? Start with these booklists featured in the webinar:

Books that inspire resilience in kids of color
Books that encourage kids of all colors to be inclusive and empathetic
Books that support kids to think critically about racial inequity
Books that animate kids (and adults!) to be racial justice advocates for all kids

About EmbraceRace: EmbraceRace is a multiracial community of parents, teachers, experts, and other caring adults who support each other to meet the challenges that race poses to our children, families, and communities.

Have additional questions or comments? Please leave them below in the comments!

12 Picture Books by Black Creators

The news may have shifted from highlighting ongoing protests across the country, but it’s amazing to see that the momentum hasn’t stopped in the fight for Black lives.

As books and anti-racism resources continue to be shared, it’s important to not only highlight books with Black characters but to celebrate and uplift the work of Black creators.

Here are 12 picture books by Black authors and illustrators to add to your book shelves:

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Update: A More Diverse Appendix B

When the Common Core Standards were created, the authors included a list of titles in Appendix B that exemplified the level of text complexity found in Appendix A and inherent quality for reading materials at each grade level. This list was intended as a comparative tool, as a way for teachers and administrators to measure current libraries against countrywide expectations for rigorous literature and informational text. Since its publication, this list, and the titles included and omitted, has created quite a bit of controversy.

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2020 Diverse Summer Reading List

Let’s kick off summer with our engaging, printable Diverse Summer Reading List that will get all kids engaged in reading! Our list includes both fiction and nonfiction, bilingual Spanish/English titles, and a diverse range of cultures—in other words, the right book for every reader! You can find the full Summer Reading collection here.

Want to freshen up your Summer Reading list, but not sure where to begin? Keep reading for some of our favorite pairings of popular books with our Lee & Low picks!

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Lee & Low at the ALA 2020 Virtual Conference

Even though the American Library Association conference has gone virtual this year, we wouldn’t want you to miss out on our offerings! View our catalog, request digital copies of our newest titles, enter our raffle for a chance to win a bundle of Lee & Low books, and check out our virtual resources for librarians, educators, and teachers alike below.

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How to Host a Successful Virtual Author Visit

Virtual Author Visits

The number of authors, illustrators, and author/illustrators who do virtual author visits to schools are increasing in number all the time. A virtual author visit is a visit by an author to a school or classroom via electronic means: Zoom, Skype, or another such platform.  While a virtual author visit may not be as effective as a live author visit, it can still inspire student participation and reading motivation after the visit is over, with the key to the success of the visit held in the hand of the host – be it teacher, librarian, counselor, or other*.  The process is very similar to scheduling an in-person visit to the school, however there are some distinct differences and challenges.

If you are considering a virtual author visit for your school, library, or bookstore, watch our webinar discussion on best practices! The panel of experts includes author Traci Sorell (Indian No More, Lee and Low Books, c2019), Dr. Christina Dorr (Media Specialist, Weaver Middle School, Hilliard, OH) and Stephanie Bange (Author Events Coordinator, Lee and Low Books):

Read on for tips and guidance on how to set up a Virtual Author Event from our Events Coordinator, Stephanie: Continue reading

10 Fun and Joyful Black Children’s Books

It has been encouraging to see so many books and resources shared over the last few weeks to help all of us gain a deeper level of understanding about modern racism in America.

However, in this moment when anti-racism books are flying off the shelves, please don’t forget that  children of color also deserve to see themselves thrive, to experience the joy of being a part of a loving community, and to not be stuck in a cycle of oppressive narratives that can shape how others view them.

Here are 10 joyful children’s books featuring Black characters to add to your shelves now: Continue reading

Exploring Children's Books Through the Lens of Diversity