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.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Our Class is Going Green


Author: Mrs. Nickel’s Kindergarten Class

Illustrator: Mrs. Nickel’s Kindergarten Class

Grade Level: K-2

Buy it here!


Our Class is Going Green, is a book written and illustrated by a kindergarten class in Oklahoma. The book is about small steps each individual within a classroom can take in order to help the environment. Simple steps as re-using paper, or even, turning off the water while you rub your hands in soap. Furthermore, the book provides the reader with compare and contrast illustrations, for instance, one page shows what to do in order to go green and the other page shows what we shouldn’t do. The book also provides a page at the end of the book where students can come up with 14 ways to go green and help the environment. Another important fact about this book is that it is printed on recycled paper.

Element 6:

I believe this book is an effective method of showing students the importance and simplicity of taking a social action, in this case by teaching the students how to go green. At the end of the book, the students are challenged to educate the entire school about the importance of going green. The steps and examples to go green involve simple steps, such as re-using paper in the class as a daily method to recycle. Students are also educated about not littering in the streets and in the school. This will provide students with many opportunities to take action on going green in the streets when they see a friend littering. In conclusion, this book can be categorized as an element 6 because it allows the students to ‘create change firsthand’ by taking these steps to go green and turning them into a habit.


This book will be a great introduction to a unit on Going Green or Recycling.  After the book is read, students can create their own book about recycling and reusing materials in the classroom. Students should use the book Our Class is Going Green, as an example. Students can also engage in various activities, such as creating posters about going green. These posters can be put up outside in the playground in order to create awareness and show others how to recycle and go green. In conclusion of the unit, students can a classroom trip to the nearest park and volunteer to clean the park, in order to raise awareness in the community.


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