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.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Lorax

                                                                      Title: The Lorax
                                                                      Author: Dr. Seuss
                                                                     Illustrated by: Dr. Seuss
                                                                      Reading Level: K-2
                                                                     Publisher: Random House
Click here to find out more about the Author, Dr. Suess! And to purchase the book The lorax, click here!

Summary: The Lorax is a book about environmental issues, such as deforestation in the forest where the Lorax lives.  There are these trees called Truffula Trees that provide fruit for the Brown Bar-ba-loots to eat.  They also provide a shady pond for the Humming-fish to swim.  The mean old Once-ler is a greedy man who only wants to make money for himself so he decides to start chopping down all the Truffula Trees.  He decides to make Thneed's out of all the trees in order to sell to people that need these sweaters, socks, or gloves.  In order to meet the high demand of Thneed's the Once-ler creates a factory in order to create more and more Thneed's, ignoring the fact that the little old Lorax is trying to save all the Truffula trees.  The mean old Once-ler does not seem to understand that the Truffula trees are needed more for the living creatures rather than the making of these Thneeds.  Will the last Truffula Tree be saved before it is too late?

Element # 5- Raising Awareness- The Lorax tells a story about the mean old Once-ler who wants to chop down all the Truffula Trees in order to make a better living for himself.  What he does not understand is that he is destroying an entire environment around him.  The Lorax, and the bar-ba-loots, and the humming-fish all need those Truffula Trees to survive much like the deer and other animals need the forest to survive around us.  It is unfair that new houses are built on top of animals homes today without any questions.  The animals cannot speak for themselves like the Lorax.  It is our job as a society to help these poor animals keep their homes.  The Lorax teaches us to stick up for what we believe is wrong and to make a difference in the community that we live in.

Follow- Up Activity- In order to create a more environmentally sound community through the teachings of The Lorax, students will participate in activities both inside an outside of their school.  Students will first create posters and postings around their school in order to promote a clean and healthy environment in their school.  They will explain to other classes why they are posting these signs around and what they mean exactly.  At the end of the week the students will then go outside the school and plant their own "Truffula Tree" and add another tree to the school environment in order to replace the last one that was cut down by the Once-ler.

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