NCSS 2020 Virtual Booth

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Elementary

ABC's of Black History
The ABCs of Black History
By Rio Cortez and illustrated by Lauren Semmer
Workman Publishing

A beautiful alphabet picture book that presents key names, moments, and places in Black history with text lyrically written by poet Rio Cortez. This is an opportunity for children to learn their ABCs to the sound of words beyond apple, boy, and cat, and an opportunity for young thinkers to prepare for big ideas. (Ages 4-9)

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Elementary

Black Heroes of the Wild West
Black Heroes of the Wild West
By James Otis Smith, Introduction by Kadir Nelson
TOON Graphics

From the introduction by Kadir Nelson, winner of the 2020 Caldecott Award: “Black Heroes of the Wild West is a brilliant and entertaining offering. Through sharp and evocative storytelling in the exciting medium of comics, lesser-known African American historical figures will be introduced to new generations of readers.”—Junior Library Guild

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Elementary

COVID-19 Helpers
COVID-19 Helpers
By Beth Bacon
John F. Blair
Winner of the 2020 Emory Global Health Institute Competition
Even during the global pandemic, communities everywhere have many helpers fighting this new disease, including doctors, nurses, researchers, scientists, farmers, truck drivers, garbage collectors, shopkeepers, postal workers, government leaders, reporters, and even kids living in shelter-in-place quarantines. Also in Spanish. (Ages 3-7)
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Elementary

The Littlest Voyageur
The Littlest Voyageur
By Margi Preus
Holiday House

A red squirrel, Jean Pierre Petit Le Rouge, stows away on a canoe to fulfill his dream of joining a group of voyageurs—men who paddle canoes filled with goods to a trading post thousands of miles away. It is 1792 and unbeknownst to a group of voyageurs traveling from Montreal to Grand Portage, an intrepid squirrel, Jean Pierre Petit Le Rouge, sneaks onto their canoe.

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Middle School

Ancestor Approved
Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids
By Cynthia Leitich Smith
HarperCollins

Edited by award-winning and bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith, this collection of intersecting stories by both new and veteran Native writers bursts with hope, joy, resilience, the strength of community, and Native pride. (Ages 8-12)

 

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Middle School

Amima's Song
Amina’s Song
By Hena Khan
Simon & Schuster
In the companion novel to the beloved and award-winning Amina’s Voice, Amina once again uses her voice to bridge the places, people, and communities she loves–this time across continents. Her friends don’t seem overly interested in her trip to Pakistan. And when she decides to do a presentation on Pakistani hero Malala Yousafzai, her classmates focus on the worst parts of the story. How can Amina share the beauty of Pakistan when no one wants to listen?
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Middle School

Kids on the March:15 Stories of Speaking Out, Protesting, and Fighting for Justice
Kids on the March:15 Stories of Speaking Out, Protesting, and Fighting for Justice
By Michael Long
Algonquin Young Readers
Kids have always been on the front lines of the fights for justice. From marches protesting child labor to the student strike that helped build the case for Brown v. Board of Education to modern-day March for Our Lives and the Climate Strike, this tells the empowering story of children and teens throughout the twentieth and early twenty-first century rallying to fight for liberty, justice, and equality. (Ages 10-14)

“Offers an excellent foray into the hows and whys of U.S. press freedom, beginning just prior to nationhood…Timely, essential reading.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

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Middle School

What Can I Do When I Grow Up?
What Can I Do When I Grow Up?
The School of Life

A unique, illustrated guide to the world of work, bringing clarity to children’s essential questions on potential future careers.

 

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Middle & High School

Guardians of Liberty: Freedom of the Press and the Nature of News
Guardians of Liberty: Freedom of the Press and the Nature of News
By Linda Barrett Osbourne
Abrams Kids

“Her survey of the seesaw between freedom of the press and government clampdowns, focused on federal law and the Supreme Court, is most passionate about the clear practical advantages of a free news media for democracy’s functioning.”—New York Times Book Review (Ages 11 & up)

 

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High School

Surprising Spies: Unexpected Heroes of WWII
Surprising Spies: Unexpected Heroes of WWII
By Karen Gray Ruelle
Holiday House

Would you spy for your country? Discover the World War II spies who lived among the shadows and the ones who lived in the limelight—disguised in plain sight! Josephine Baker. Virginia Hall. Roy Hawthorne. These are but a few of the daring spies who risked it all to deliver and protect crucial intel for the Allied powers. (Ages 8-12)

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High School

Your Corner Dark
Your Corner Dark
By Desmond Hall
Atheneum

Seventeen-year-old Frankie Green yearns to leave Jamaica and study in the United States, but when his father is shot he is forced to give up his scholarship and join his uncle Joe’s gang. (Ages 13-17)

 

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High School

Your Heart, My Sky
Your Heart, My Sky
By Margarita Engle
Simon & Schuster
Acclaimed author Margarita Engle tells a painful, poignant story of love in a time of hunger inspired by her own family’s struggles during a dark period in Cuba’s history. The people of Cuba are living in el período especial en tiempos de paz–the special period in times of peace. That’s what the government insists that this era must be called, but the reality behind these words is starvation. Ages 12 & up)
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Lucinda Robb and Rebecca Boggs Roberts, Authors
The Suffragist’s Playbook
Candlewick/Brilliance Audio
“The bright, clean layout and color scheme are visually enticing, making this an appealing manual for action. An outstanding and inspirational guide to women’s history for today’s political activists.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
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Shani Mahiri King, Author
Have I Ever Told You Black Lives Matter?
Tilbury House
Black lives matter. That message would be self-evident in a just world, but in this world and this America, all children need to hear it again and again, and not just to hear it but to feel and know it. This book affirms the message repeatedly, tenderly, with cumulative power and shared pride.
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Diane Stanley, Author
Resist! Peaceful Acts That Changed Our World
Neal Porter Books/Holiday House

A global collective biography of 21 individuals, movements, and organizations exemplifying Margaret Mead’s truism that a small group of citizens can change the world.

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Katie Kennedy, Author
The Constitution Decoded: A Guide to the Document That Shapes Our Nation
Workman
The book decodes the original document with a direct translation of the text, dissecting every word, phrase and idea while connecting the document to major historical figures and events, using full-color illustrations and examples of how the document works in practice.
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Christina Soontornvat, Author
All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys’ Soccer Team
Candlewick/Brilliance
“In lucid prose written in third-person-present tense for a heightened sense of immediacy, Soontornvat gives readers a journalistic account of the difficulty and complexity of the rescue effort.”—The Horn Book, starred review
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James Otis Smith, Author
Black Heroes of the Wild West
TOON Graphics
This graphic nonfiction celebrates the extraordinary true tales of three black heroes who took control of their destinies and stood up for their communities in the Old West.
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Alexis O’Neill, Author
Jacob Riis’s Camera
Calkins Creek

“The compelling activism of Jacob Riis animates this beautifully illustrated picture book biography. O’Neill pulls Riis’s life as a U.S. immigrant from Denmark into sharp focus, using vignettes to demonstrate how his experiences amplified his activism.”—Publishers Weekly

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Julie Lee, Author
Brother’s Keeper
Holiday House
Twelve-year-old Sora and her eight-year-old brother, Youngsoo, must try to escape North Korea’s oppressive Communist regime on their own in 1950.
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Dion Graham, Director of the audiobooks
Rise! From Caged Bird to Poet of the People
Live Oak Media
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the publication of “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” this beautiful biography describes how Angelou rose above a childhood of trauma and emotional pain to become one of the most inspiring voices of our lifetime.

The Overground Railroad
A girl named Ruth Anne tells the story of her family’s train journey from North Carolina to New York City as part of the Great Migration
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Register here to win the Book and Audio Basket O’Fun valued at over $300!

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Listen Now!

Absolutely Everything!
Absolutely Everything!: A History of Earth, Dinosaurs, Rulers, Robots and Other Things Too Numerous to Mention
By Christopher Lloyd. Narrated by the author
What on Earth Books
From the Neanderthals to the Wright Brothers, from the Silk Trade to the Industrial Revolution, from dinosaurs to plastic, embark on an entertaining journey across millennia and continents.

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Find audiobook reviews, resources, and much more at Audiofile Magazine.
Read the December 2020/January 2021 issue for free.

Audiofile Magazine

Sound Learning

Soundlearningapa.org has research and resources for audio literacy. Find the latest research along with selection lists for each grade at https://www.audiopub.org/sound-learning.
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teachingbooks.net
Kidlit TV at home

Elementary

A Ride to Remember: A Civil Rights Story
A Ride to Remember: A Civil Rights Story
By Sharon Langley
“Delivers a beautiful and tender message about equality from the very first page.”—Kirkus Reviews

Download the Teaching Guide

Elementary

Overground Railroad
Overground Railroad
By Lesa Cline-Ransome, illustrated by James Ransome
“Ransome does an admirable job of setting mood as well as establishing time and place.”—The Horn Book
Also on Audio!
Download the Teaching Guide


Elementary

Loretta Little Looks Back: Three Voices Go Tell It
Loretta Little Looks Back: Three Voices Go Tell It
By Andrea Davis Pinkney, illustrated by Brian Pinkney
Loretta, Roly, and Aggie B., members of the Little family, recount their lives through original first-person narratives, poetry, and spiritual hymns.

Download the Discussion Guide

Elementary

Democracy for Dinosaurs
Democracy for Dinosaurs
By Laura Krasny Brown and Marc Brown
Using accessible dinosaur characters and clear language, Democracy for Dinosaurs explores key civic values on every adult’s mind and helps show young readers how the things they do every single day can be guided by principles we must share in a democratic society: freedom, fairness, the rule of law, equality, respect for free speech, and respect for the truth.
Download Teaching Tips


Elementary

Resist: Peaceful Acts that Changed Our World
Resist: Peaceful Acts that Changed Our World
By Diane Stanley
Resist!, a collection of 21 brief but comprehensive essays accompanied by striking artwork and rich supplementary material by Diane Stanley, reminds us of the activists who came before: the men and women who have used peaceful resistance and non-violent protests to make their voices heard.
Download the Teaching Guide

Elementary

The Day Saida Arrived
The Day Saida Arrived
By Susana Gomez Redondo, translated by Lawrence Schimmel, illustrated by Sonja Wimmer
Blue Dot Kids Press
Two girls forge a forever-friendship by learning each other’s language. The Day Saida Arrived demonstrates the power of language to build bonds beyond borders.
Download the Teaching Guide


Middle School

We Dream of Space
We Dream of Space
By Erin Entrada Kelly
“Three siblings face their middle school problems as they learn about space…Put this book in your orbit.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Download the Teaching Guide

High School

Punching the Air
Punching the Air
By Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam
“This book will be Walter Dean Myers’s Monster for a new generation of teens. An important, powerful, and beautiful novel that should be an essential purchase for any library that serves teens.”—School Library Journal
Download the Teaching Guide

Middle School

Everything You Need to Ace…Big Fat Notebooks

Great news! The popular “Big Fat Notebook” series has now been adapted for middle school! At a time when so many students are distance learning, these books can help save the day.

Big Fat Notebooks Standards Mapping:
Coding | ELA | ELA Summer Reading Guide | World History | American History | Science | Math

Big Fat Notebooks


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Books That Make History Come Alive!

Biographies


Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Legends

Picture Books About Feelings, Families, and Journeys


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360 Degrees ◆ Abrams ◆ Algonquin Young Readers ◆ Blue Dot Kids Press ◆ Boyds Mills Kane ◆ Brilliance Audio ◆ Britannica Books ◆ Candlewick ◆ Diamond Book Distributors ◆ Disney ◆ Eerdmans ◆ Floris Books ◆ Greystone Kids ◆ HarperCollins ◆ Holiday House ◆ Inhabit Media ◆ Karadi Tales ◆ Lantana ◆ Little, Brown ◆ Live Oak Media ◆ Karadi Tales ◆ Magination Press ◆ Pajama Press ◆ Simon & Schuster ◆ Tilbury House ◆ TOON Boooks ◆ Tiny Owl ◆ What On Earth Books ◆ Workman


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Ellen Myrick

Ellen Myrick
The Voting Booth
The Voting Booth
By Brandy Colbert
Disney Publishing
Brandy Colbert (The Only Black Girls in Town) seizes the moment in this YA novel about a rite of passage that should be easy—voting for the first time. A passionate young activist throws herself into the fray when a young man is turned away at the polls. Told from alternating perspectives, the momentum of the story and the urgency of the day make this a page turner that truly feels like it’s happening right in front of you. And maybe it is. (Grades 9-12)

The Day Saida Arrived
The Day Saida Arrived
By Susana Gomez Redondo, translated by Lawrence Schimmel, illustrated by Sonja Wimmer
Blue Dot Kids Press
The power of knowing a person’s name and learning their language is beautifully revealed in this must-have picture book for any collection that deals with the immigrant experience. This story is not told from just one perspective, however, and will broaden the reader’s understanding of what it must be like to be faced with so many new experiences at once. Sonja Wimmer (The Truly Brave Princesses) proves herself again to be one of the most exciting picture book illustrators out there. Not to be missed.
Mexique: A Refugee Story from the Spanish Civil War
Mexique: A Refugee Story from the Spanish Civil War
By Maria Jose Ferrada
Eerdmans
This story of a boatload (400 children!) sent from Spain to wait out the war in Mexico was completely unknown to me, and is a useful–and beautiful–reminder that virtually every part of the world has its own stories of desperate journeys. What was expected to be a few months turned into long years of exile. Evocative illustrations and extensive backmatter make this a compelling and enlightening read.

Tracy Gallagher

Tracy Gallagher
Immigrant Architect
Immigrant Architect: Rafael Guastavino and the American Dream
By Berta de Miguel, Kent Diebolt, and Virginia Lorente
Illustrated by Virginia Lorente
Tilbury House
I’m intrigued by the stories about unknown people brave enough to leave behind everything they know to come to the United States. This book about a father and son leaving their family behind to live their dream of building beautiful and functional buildings that would be fire resistant was fascinating to read. The list of places they are responsible for building has me ready for a field trip. (Grades 3-6)

Humanimal
Humanimal: Incredible Ways Animals Are Just Like Us!
By Christopher Lloyd and illustrated by Mark Ruffle
What on Earth Books
Once upon a time scientists separated humans from animals with the simple definition of ‘Humans are Tool Makers.’ In this illustrated showcase of the commonalities between humans and animals we find that this definition is no longer true. Instead we find that animals make and use tools as well. Plus, community, feelings, and intelligence in the animal world abound. The simple biographies of the animal scientists at the end will prompt further research. (Grades 3-7)

Francisca Goldsmith

Francisca Goldsmith
The Great War
The Great War
By Tanya Lee Stone
Brilliance Audio

This audiobook offers a powerhouse of useful possibilities in the social sciences curriculum, combining excellent short story writing from nearly a dozen prominent young adult authors, performed by equally skillful voice actors, and imagining how real-life artifacts from World War I might have been used, treasured, or lost by the imagined characters in these new stories. What a fabulous entry point for discovering history as living, the power of professional narration, and how fiction can convey truths.

How I Survived
How I Survived: Four Nights on the Ice
By Serapio Ittusardjuat
Illustrated by Matthew K. Hoddy
Inhabit Media

What better way to convey the experiences of being caught alone in the Arctic wilderness when your snowmobile breaks down than to show the scenes of wintry dangers and possibilities in sequential art format? This one is for those seeking adventure, personal narratives of overcoming hardship, ways to honor traditional skills by using them, and how comics can convey more of a such an account than might a text-only narrative.

Jamie Schmitt

Jamie Schmitt
The Black Kids
The Black Kids
By Christina Hammonds Reed
Simon and Schuster
The Black Kids is a fantastic novel that will be perfect for high school classrooms all over America. This is an unforgettable coming-of-age novel about Ashley Bennett, a teenager during the 1992 Rodney King Riots. The Black Kids is beautiful, heartbreaking, and life-changing–one of the best books to come out of 2020 and exemplary for the NCSS audience.

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