Wednesday, November 23, 2016
Thankful for Books
Squanto's Journey: The Story of the First Thanksgiving
by Joseph Bruchac
This is a great story with beautiful illustrations telling the story of Squanto. It doesn't always read as emotive but sometimes more flat and factual but a title many prefer because it doesn't have a toned down version of the treatment of the natives and Squanto's life.
To add to that I know that the Thanksgiving story of my youth isn't seen as politically correct and some people prefer to not even acknowledge or celebrate the Thanksgiving story. I'm not one of those and still enjoy a good "First Thanksgiving Day" story, but if a well rounded telling of the story is preferred then the above title is excellent.
In fact if people want to acknowledge where out modern holiday came from the following book is a great choice.
Thank You, Sarah: The Women Who Saved Thanksgiving
by Laurie Halse Anderson
Sarah Hale really is the one we have to thank for continuing to advocated to many presidents to set a day of national thanksgiving. President Lincoln obliged her and thus we have Thanksgiving.
It is a very well done and interesting story, especially if you aren't aware of all the aspects of what Sarah Hale did (I was not). Great read!
Another oldie, but goodie
The Thanksgiving Story
by Alice Dalgliesh
This is a Caldecott Honor book from 1955, and follows the Hopkins family on their trip across the pond on the Mayflower and their arrival in the New World. I like this account of the the Pilgrims and their journey and first year at Plymouth Plantation. It is a bit long, and I have found that the pictures (depending on your copy) can seem a bit dull and boring to younger children. However it is still a great story but may be appreciated more by an elementary age child.
When I was a child the book that we all read, and the story we all knew was
Squanto: Friend of the Pilgrims
by Clyde Robert Bulla
Bulla does a great job recounting Squanto's life and befriending of the arriving pilgrims.
This is labeled a biography and you'll often find it in the non-fiction section, but many will argue that it is fictionally retelling of Squanto's life. I'm a big advocate and lover of the biography series of
"Childhood of Famous Americans" which are also the same type of retelling.
Squanto: Young Indian Hunter
by August Stevenson
William Bradford: Pilgrim Boy
by Bradford Smith
This book has been republished and is an interesting account of the young orphaned boy who would go on to become the first governor of Plimoth Plantation.
Another good set for studying the Pilgrims as well as the native Wamponoags are the following:
People of the Breaking Day and Pilgrims of Plimoth
both by Marcia Sewall
Sewall tells of the world of the Wamponoag before the Pilgrims arrived in Massachusetts. The companion book tells of the home that the Pilgrims built in their new found land of Plimoth Plantation.
Thunder from the Clear Sky
by Marcia Sewall
This companion also to the above tells of the meeting of the two cultures and worlds of the Wompanoag and the arriving Pilgrims.
But for me Thanksgiving isn't only the telling of the "first" thanksgiving but includes fun things like football and the parade. I am a BIG lover of sitting in my snugglies, with a big cup of coffee watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Bringing this book to be one of my favorites.
There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Pie
by Alison Jackson
This book is silly, but I love it.
I was the parent helper years ago in my son's preschool class and I got to sit - criss-cross applesauce - on the reading carpet and listen to the teacher read this aloud to us. Cute, but the ending - that's why I love it.
And if you also like the parade the following Sibert Award book is a great addition to the day.
Balloons Over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy's Parade
by Melissa Sweet
A great biography on Tony Sarg, the man responsible for bringing us the giant Macy's Day Parade balloons. A true story, a quick picture book, factual and fun.