Archive for the ‘Language Arts’ Category

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month! We get to celebrate the incredible contributions of Asian and Pacific Islanders to American culture.

While it may be difficult to visit nearby sites at this time, you can enrich your family’s learning through books, food, movies, poetry.

We have a few resources in our Brave Writer library that may help.

Own Voices Mechanics and Literature Titles

Dart: The Year of the Dog by Grace Lin

When Pacy’s mom tells her that this is a good year for friends, family, and “finding herself,” Pacy begins searching right away. As the year goes on, she struggles to find her talent, deals with disappointment, makes a new best friend, and discovers just why the Year of the Dog is a lucky one for her after all. ~Amazon

Arrow: The Thing about Luck by Cynthia Kadohata

There is bad luck, good luck, and making your own luck–which is exactly what Summer must do to save her family in this winner of the National Book Award. ~Amazon

Boomerang: American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang

Jin Wang starts at a new school where he’s the only Chinese-American student. When a boy from Taiwan joins his class, Jin doesn’t want to be associated with an FOB like him. Jin just wants to be an all-American boy, because he’s in love with an all-American girl. Danny is an all-American boy: great at basketball, popular with the girls. But his obnoxious Chinese cousin Chin-Kee’s annual visit is such a disaster that it ruins Danny’s reputation at school, leaving him with no choice but to transfer somewhere he can start all over again. The Monkey King has lived for thousands of years and mastered the arts of kung fu and the heavenly disciplines. He’s ready to join the ranks of the immortal gods in heaven. But there’s no place in heaven for a monkey. Each of these characters cannot help himself alone, but how can they possibly help each other? They’re going to have to find a way―if they want fix the disasters their lives have become.―Amazon

Poetry Resources

Celebrating Asian American Heritage

If you aren’t familiar with Asian/Pacific American poets, this Poetry Teatime post will give you a good place to get started! Keep reading.

Types of Asian and Pacific Poetry

Ever heard of a syair? What about twin cinema? While one of those poetic forms is ancient and one is brand new, they do have one thing in common: they were both created in Asia. In honor of Asian and Pacific American Heritage Month in the US, let’s take a look at the vast array of forms in Asian and Pacific poetry. Keep reading.

Japanese Teatime

Japan has one of the most elaborate tea ceremonies in the world. It involves special utensils, treats, gestures, and an entire philosophy for sharing tea! In today’s post, learn about this philosophy of the Japanese tea ceremony and ways to incorporate some of those practices into your own teatime routines. Keep reading.


Brave Learner Home

Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang: May 2021

Brave Writer

Perseverance, compassion, and the desire to help others are easy to spot in May’s Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang selections.

As we explore grammar, punctuation, spelling, and literary devices, we’ll watch engaging characters:

  • solve mysteries,
  • lead others to safety,
  • and rise against unimaginable odds.

[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]


Brave Writer Dart

Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective, Donald Sobol

Leroy Brown, aka Encyclopedia Brown, is Idaville neighborhood’s ten-year-old star detective. With an uncanny knack for trivia, he solves mysteries for the neighborhood kids through his own detective agency. But his dad also happens to be the chief of the Idaville police department, and every night around the dinner table, Encyclopedia helps him solve his most baffling crimes. And with ten confounding mysteries in each book, not only does Encyclopedia have a chance to solve them, but the reader is given all the clues as well. Interactive and chock full of interesting bits of information—it’s classic Encyclopedia Brown! ~Amazon

Get the Dart.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Arrow

Mañanaland, Pam Muñoz Ryan

Maximiliano Córdoba loves stories, especially the legend Buelo tells him about a mythical gatekeeper who can guide brave travelers on a journey into tomorrow.

If Max could see tomorrow, he would know if he’d make Santa Maria’s celebrated fútbol team and whether he’d ever meet his mother, who disappeared when he was a baby. He longs to know more about her, but Papá won’t talk. So when Max uncovers a buried family secret—involving an underground network of guardians who lead people fleeing a neighboring country to safety—he decides to seek answers on his own.

With a treasured compass, a mysterious stone rubbing, and Buelo’s legend as his only guides, he sets out on a perilous quest to discover if he is true of heart and what the future holds.

This timeless tale of struggle, hope, and the search for tomorrow has much to offer today about compassion and our shared humanity. ~Amazon

Get the Arrow.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Boomerang

Refugee, Alan Gratz

JOSEF is a Jewish boy living in 1930s Nazi Germany. With the threat of concentration camps looming, he and his family board a ship bound for the other side of the world…

ISABEL is a Cuban girl in 1994. With riots and unrest plaguing her country, she and her family set out on a raft, hoping to find safety in America…

MAHMOUD is a Syrian boy in 2015. With his homeland torn apart by violence and destruction, he and his family begin a long trek toward Europe…

All three kids go on harrowing journeys in search of refuge. All will face unimaginable dangers—from drownings to bombings to betrayals. But there is always the hope of tomorrow. And although Josef, Isabel, and Mahmoud are separated by continents and decades, shocking connections will tie their stories together in the end.

This action-packed novel tackles topics both timely and timeless: courage, survival, and the quest for home. ~Amazon

Get the Boomerang.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Language Arts

2021-2022 Book Reveal: Save the Date

Brave Writer Book Reveal

I can’t WAIT for June!

This is the highlight of the year for us—the Big Bonanza Book Reveal! 

You’ll want to attend these live events with your children and teens, if possible.

Register for our upcoming Book Reveals (4:00 PM Eastern both dates):

We’ll record both days and send replays to those who register.

We’ll also simulcast on Facebook (the Brave Writer business page) and store replays there as well.

No registration required if you plan to watch on Facebook.


Not sure what we’re talking about?

Let me ask you this:

  • Want to read great books each month with your kids?
  • Wish you could teach spelling, grammar, and punctuation using that high-quality literature?
  • Working to weave in literary devices or literary analysis?
  • Worried about reading comprehension?
  • Wondering how to throw a themed book club party?

Introducing our literature programs that teach the mechanics of writing through great literature!

These programs include 10 month-long handbooks (5 for the Slingshot) that feature:

  • exciting read aloud novels,
  • copywork and dictation,
  • literary devices and literary analysis,
  • big juicy discussion questions, and
  • book club party ideas.

The annual book reveal is a high-energy party that Brave Writer fans attend every year!

Like the NFL Draft of Books!


Want to learn more?

Join me LIVE Saturday, May 1, @ 4:00 PM Eastern on Facebook or Instagram and I’ll answer all your questions.

Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang: Mar. 2021

Brave Writer Dart Arrow Boomerang

Good books grow empathy, and this month’s Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang selections are no exception. As we explore grammar, punctuation, spelling, and literary devices, we’ll have the opportunity to grow new perspectives and deeper understanding.

We’ll see the world through the eyes of:

  • swans,
  • young dragons,
  • and a beloved TV hero.

We’ll witness their hardships and cheer on our protagonists in their quests to overcome adversity.


[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]


Dart

The Trumpet of the Swan, E.B. White

Like the rest of his family, Louis is a trumpeter swan. But unlike his four brothers and sisters, Louis can’t trumpet joyfully. In fact, he can’t even make a sound. And since he can’t trumpet his love, the beautiful swan Serena pays absolutely no attention to him.

Louis tries everything he can think of to win Serena’s affection—he even goes to school to learn to read and write. But nothing seems to work. Then his father steals him a real brass trumpet. Is a musical instrument the key to winning Louis his love?

The Trumpet of the Swan joins E. B. White favorites Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little as classic illustrated novels that continue to speak to today’s readers. Whether you curl up with your young reader to share these books or hand them off for independent reading, you are helping to create what are likely to be all-time favorite reading memories. ~Amazon

Get the Dart.

Purchase the novel here.


Arrow

Wings of Fire (Book One), Tui T. Sutherland

A thrilling series that soars above the competition and redefines middle-grade fantasy fiction for a new generation!

The seven dragon tribes have been at war for generations, locked in an endless battle over an ancient, lost treasure. A secret movement called the Talons of Peace is determined to bring an end to the fighting, with the help of a prophecy—a foretelling that calls for great sacrifice.

Five dragonets are collected to fulfill the prophecy, raised in a hidden cave and enlisted, against their will, to end the terrible war.

But not every dragonet wants a destiny. And when the select five escape their underground captors to look for their original homes, what has been unleashed on the dragon world may be far more than the revolutionary planners intended… ~Amazon

Get the Arrow.

Purchase the novel here.


Boomerang

They Called Us Enemy, George Takei

George Takei has captured hearts and minds worldwide with his captivating stage presence and outspoken commitment to equal rights. But long before he braved new frontiers in Star Trek, he woke up as a four-year-old boy to find his own birth country at war with his father’s—and their entire family forced from their home into an uncertain future.

In 1942, at the order of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, every person of Japanese descent on the west coast was rounded up and shipped to one of ten “relocation centers,” hundreds or thousands of miles from home, where they would be held for years under armed guard.

They Called Us Enemy is Takei’s firsthand account of those years behind barbed wire, the joys and terrors of growing up under legalized racism, his mother’s hard choices, his father’s faith in democracy, and the way those experiences planted the seeds for his astonishing future.

What does it mean to be American? Who gets to decide? When the world is against you, what can one person do? To answer these questions, George Takei joins co-writers Justin Eisinger & Steven Scott and artist Harmony Becker for the journey of a lifetime. ~Amazon

Get the Boomerang.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Language Arts

Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang: Feb. 2021

Brave Writer

There are big ideas brewing in this month’s Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang guides!

While we discuss mechanics and literary devices, we’ll also experience the power of stories. We’ll read tales of:

  • loss,
  • love,
  • resilience,
  • and learning.

We’ll notice how stories shape and shift the way we think and help us to understand the world in wondrous new ways.


[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]


Brave Writer Dart

Sarah, Plain and Tall, Patricia MacLachlan

Set in the late nineteenth century and told from young Anna’s point of view, Sarah, Plain and Tall tells the story of how Sarah Elisabeth Wheaton comes from Maine to the prairie to answer Papa’s advertisement for a wife and mother. Before Sarah arrives, Anna and her younger brother Caleb wait and wonder. Will Sarah be nice? Will she sing? Will she stay?

This children’s literature classic is perfect for fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie books, historical fiction, and timeless stories using rich and beautiful language. Sarah, Plain and Tall gently explores themes of abandonment, loss and love. ~Amazon

Get the Dart.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Arrow

The People Could Fly, Virginia Hamilton

The well-known author retells 24 black American folk tales in sure storytelling voice: animal tales, supernatural tales, fanciful and cautionary tales, and slave tales of freedom. All are beautifully readable. With the added attraction of 40 wonderfully expressive paintings by the Dillons, this collection should be snapped up. ~School Library Journal

Note: Purchase or borrow the collection of folk tales, not the picture book version.

Get the Arrow.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Boomerang

Blink, Malcolm Gladwell

In Blink we meet the psychologist who has learned to predict whether a marriage will last, based on a few minutes of observing a couple; the tennis coach who knows when a player will double-fault before the racket even makes contact with the ball; the antiquities experts who recognize a fake at a glance...Blink reveals that great decision makers aren’t those who process the most information or spend the most time deliberating, but those who have perfected the art of “thin-slicing”, filtering the very few factors that matter from an overwhelming number of variables.

Drawing on cutting-edge neuroscience and psychology and displaying all of the brilliance that made The Tipping Point a classic, Blink changes the way you understand every decision you make. Never again will you think about thinking the same way. ~Amazon

Get the Boomerang.

Purchase the novel here.


Brave Writer Language Arts