Below is an annotated list of children's literature for the elementary classroom. The books are organized by the Six Elements of Social Justice Curriculum Design (Picower, 2007). It is based on work by pre-service teachers at Montclair State University. They have read and reviewed these books and provided insights into how they can be used in K-5 settings.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Element 3: Mrs. Katz and Tush

Author and Illustrator
Patricia Polacco

Grade Level
P-2 (but can be used for older, depending on the lesson)

Link to purchase book

Link to find more information and lesson planning ideas

This book is about an older, Jewish woman named Mrs. Katz and a young, African American boy named Larnel. Larnel and Mrs. Katz are neighbors and develop a close friendship after Larnel convinces Mrs. Katz to adopt a kitten, who they later named Tush. Throughout the story, Mrs. Katz shares her experiences as a young, Jewish woman in Poland during the time of the Holocaust. Mrs. Katz explains how Jewish people were singled out and mistreated because of their religion.

Element 3: Exploring Issues of Social Justice
Element 3, exploring issues of social justice and how diversity has negatively impacted different groups of people, can be woven into the curriculum using this book. Mrs. Katz and Tush will provide the opportunity for students to learn about the suffering and oppression of Jewish people during the Holocaust.

How would you use the book
There are many ways this book can be used. After reading the book, make a visual list as a class of the similarities and differences between Mrs. Katz and Larnel using pictures and/or words. After compiling a list of similarities and differences between the characters in this book, select students at random to be grouped together and have them make a list (in words and/or pictures) of their similarities and differences. After compiling the list, have students do a picture walk around the classroom so they can see the small groups work, as well as show off their work. By working in small groups, students will feel comfortable sharing information about themselves with peers, while allowing them to learn about their peers. By sharing it with the class through a picture walk, students will visually see and learn about their classmates. 

No comments:

Post a Comment