From The Nerdy Book Club: Ten Picture Books to Change Your Reading Life
I would never have thought five or six years ago that picture books would become such an essential part of my reading life. But my life changed four years ago when I decided to go back to college to get my teaching degree. I love to read, but with all of the additional schoolwork I was doing, I couldn’t find the time. I also noticed that I had trouble staying focused for long periods of reading like I used to. But picture books have saved my reading life. I can sneak in a book every morning at breakfast, one or two in the evening between lesson planning and studying, and a whole pile on the weekends with my coffee.
With all of this picture book reading, I have found so many incredible books; fantasy, realistic, historical, silly, sad, hopeful, biographies, and so much more. Historical fiction books have taught me more about the history of our country and our world than any course in high school or college I have taken. I have learned about compassion, religion, and different cultures. These picture books have taught me about people, relationships, race, lifestyles, abilities, and the world right outside my door, and far beyond. Being able to read one book from start to finish in one sitting has also helped me to regain some control over my time and my ability to focus.
Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson and Frank Morrison was part of March Book Madness in 2019, it was a new book to me, and it was incredible! I had read many books about the civil rights era. Still, I was completely unfamiliar with the Children’s March until I read this book. The illustrations are stunning, and the story heartbreaking but so inspiring. It opened my eyes to the fact that there was more to the Civil Rights movement than I ever imagined.
Between Us and Abuela: A Family Story from the Border by Mitali Perkins and Sara Palacios is about a family that visits their grandmother for La Posada Sin Fronteras, “The Inn Without Borders.” She lives in Mexico, and they live in the US. On that one day a year, they can meet to celebrate the holiday, but sadly, with a fence between them. The children try to get their gifts through the fence but have to try something else instead. This book is beautiful and sweet, but also made me so sad, yet grateful to have my family so close.