A Declaration in Support of Children

Please add my name Eboni Jean Darnell.

faceofhope Illustration by Vanessa Brantley-Newton

Children’s literature may be the most influential literary genre of all. Picture books, chapter books, middle-grade and young-adult novels all serve the most noble of purposes: to satisfy the need for information, to entertain curious imaginations, to encourage critical thinking skills, to move and inspire. Within their pages, seeds of wisdom and possibility are sown.

Therefore we, the undersigned children’s book authors and illustrators, do publicly affirm our commitment to using our talents and varied forms of artistic expression to help eliminate the fear that takes root in the human heart amid lack of familiarity and understanding of others; the type of fear that feeds stereotypes, bitterness, racism and hatred; the type of fear that so often leads to tragic violence and senseless death.

Our country is deeply divided. The recent election is a clear indication of the bigotry that is entrenched in this nation, of…

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Those in power would prefer favela culture to remain out of sight

Media Diversified

Dispatch from Rio

by Felipe Araujo  

The day after the Opening Ceremony of the Rio Olympics, I found myself in northern Rio’s Madureira Park – a place far away from the bright lights of the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema. On weekends, it’s here that Cariocas from the surrounding favelas congregate to spend quality time with family and friends. As young and old gather in front of a stage on a hot Saturday night, what they are about to witness is the latest art form to come from the favela residents.

Passinho, or “little step”, is what breakdancing is to hip-hop. But on these shores, Brazilian kids dance to (the local version of) funk.

The dance mixes a number of genres such as samba, breakdancing, and forro. The moves have been a cultural staple of favela life for a generation, but only recently has it gone mainstream.

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But The Kids Aren’t Reading – 20 Ideas for Creating Passionate Reading Environments

This is absolutely perfect!

So many of us are trying to create passionate reading environments, we are doing all the things the experts tell us to do, and yet, something just isn’t clicking.  Some kids are reading sure, but they would probably be reading any way, others though, not so much.  Our passionate reading environments are just not working for all of our kids.

When I moved from 5th to 7th I knew I would be up against a challenge, after all, I had seen the slow decline of reading in my 5th graders and was pretty sure it would continue as they got older.  And I was right,  by 7th graders some of my students are not just disliking books, some really hate reading. And they are vocal about it!  So what have I done to continue to create passionate reading environments?  Here are a few ideas…

Invested in books.  Every single book…

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