This is an exciting opportunity to write a Unit about other cultures outside the United States, through use of children’s literature. Students learn best when they are appropriately motivated and self-confident. My commitment to students is to have in mind to include all children, regardless of their ethnic background, gender, race or disabilities. For these purposes I selected a series of stories written by people whose cultures and language are very different from theirs. As their experience of the “others” is expanded, my student’s hearts and minds will be opened also. My intention is that they will be better able to empathize with others and to appreciate the different languages and differences between them.
In the following stories students will find youthful, sometimes first-person narrators whose interests and dreams are familiar to theirs but whose cultural background and language may be quite different. They will generate discussions as we build self confidence and help students to survive in their struggle of learning a new language and adjusting themselves to the environment. Reading is the skill we need most when we want to belong to society but writing is also essential. Allowing students to appreciate the uniqueness of various cultures, opens the possibilities for future understandings. It will help to see and appreciate the richness of the increasing diversity within the communities and our world.