Book of the Month

These featured books are from our Books Matter collection that teach about bias, promote respect for diversity and encourage social action. To help educators and parent/family members expand upon children’s learning from the book, each Book of the Month has an Educator Discussion Guide and a Parent/Family Discussion Guide, which provides discussion questions, activities, talking points and additional resources.

November 2017 Book of the Month: When We Were Alone

When a young girl helps tend to her grandmother’s garden, she begins to notice things that make her curious. Why does her grandmother have long, braided hair and beautifully colored clothing? Why does she speak another language and spend so much time with her family? As she asks her grandmother about these things, she is told about life in a residential school a long time ago, where all of these things were taken away. This book tells the story about a difficult time in history and one of empowerment and strength.

AUTHOR(S): David Robertson


Posted (October 2017)

When cell phones are banned at Branton Middle school, Frost and his friends Deedee, Wolf and Bench come up with a new way to communicate: leaving sticky notes for each other all around the school. Soon all the kids are leaving notes—though for every kind and friendly one, there is a cutting and cruel one as well.

Pablo Neruda: Poet of the People (September 2017)

Pablo Neruda wrote poems about the things he loved―things made by his friends in the café, things found at the marketplace, things he saw in nature, and the people of Chile and their stories of struggle.

The Best Man (June 2017)

Archer Magill has spent a lively five years of grade school in search of grown-up role models. Three of the best are his grandpa, the great architect; his dad, the great vintage car customizer; and his uncle Paul, who is just plain great. These are the three he wants to be like.

Amina's Voice (May 2017)

While Amina, a Pakistani-American middle school student, grapples with questions of friendship and identity, she is devastated when her local mosque is vandalized. This book highlights the many ways in which one girl’s voice can help bring a diverse community together.

The Journey (April 2017)

What is it like to have to leave everything behind and travel many miles to somewhere unfamiliar and strange? A mother and her two children set out on such a journey; one filled with fear of the unknown but also great hope.

Brave Girl: Clara and the Shirtwaist Makers' Strike of 1909 (March 2017) 

This book tells the true story of Clara Lemlich, a young Ukrainian immigrant who led the largest strike of women workers in U.S. history.

Firebird (February 2017)

In her debut picture book, Misty Copeland tells the story of a young girl whose confidence is fragile and who is questioning her own ability to reach the heights that Misty has reached.

Towers Falling (January 2017)

When her fifth-grade teacher hints that a series of lessons about home and community will culminate with one big answer about two tall towers once visible outside their classroom window, Deja sets off on a journey of discovery.