“El barrio is a shimmering cold hydrant spray on a hot summer day, vegetable gardens instead of lawns, and bright colored houses that look like villages.”
In Debbi Chocolate’s El Barrio a little boy describes the people and sights of his vibrant city neighborhood accompanied by colorful illustrations by David Diaz.
“El barrio is silver-streaked tenements, neon city streets, storefront churches, and bodegas that never sleep.”
Read El Barrio to your students. Admire the lyrical language and all the culturally rich details. The discussion could naturally lead to a conversation about different kinds of communities and the fun of learning words from other countries, such as the ones listed in the glossary at the back of El Barrio.
Using El Barrio as a model, ask your students to write about the beauty in their own neighborhoods. If time, let them illustrate their work, too.
This exercise provides a great opportunity to celebrate the diversity in your classroom and gives students the chance to share something about their lives.
Multicultural Children’s BookDay will be celebrated this week on January 27th.
This national event was created to raise awareness for the kids’ books that celebrate diversity and to get more of these books into classrooms and libraries. To read about this exciting endeavor and how you can help, please visit their website.
If you'd like some book recommendations, visit this link for a list of resources to use on Multicultural Children’s Book Day
Happy Multicultural Children’s Book Day!