The Classroom Bookshelf
Inside The Classroom Bookshelf
Mary Ann Cappiello

About Mary Ann Cappiello

Mary Ann is a professor of language and literacy at Lesley University. A former public school language arts and humanities teacher, she is a passionate advocate for and commentator on children’s books. Mary Ann is the co-author of Teaching with Text Sets and Teaching to Complexity.

La Frontera and Dreamers

La Frontera

La Frontera: El Viaje con Papá/My Journey with Papa Written by Deborah Mills and Alfredo Alva Illustrated by Claudia Navarro Published by Barefoot Books, 2018, ISBN 978-1-78285-388-6 Book Review “Cuando era niño, mi familia vivía en el pequeño pueblo de La Ceja, en el centro de Mexico, en el estado de Guanajuato. Mi familia había vivido allí […]

The Night Diary

The Night Diary

The Night Diary Written by Veera Hiranandani Published by Dial Books for Young Readers, 2018 ISBN: 9780735228511 Grades 4- 8 Book Review “Wasn’t independence from the British supposed to free us? We’ve never been less free” (p. 194). So observes twelve-year-old Nisha, the protagonist of Veera Hiranandani’s gorgeous historical novel that offers contemporary readers a […]

Escape from Aleppo

Escape from Aleppo

Escape from Aleppo Written by N.H. Senzai Published by Paula Wiseman Books, Simon and Schuster, 2018 ISBN: 978-1-4814-7217-3 Grades 5-8 Book Review In the midst of the Syrian Civil War in fall of 2013, protagonist Nadia must find her way back to her family, from whom she was separated when a bomb hit their apartment […]

World Make Way: New Poems Inspired by Art from The Metropolitan Museum of Art

World Make Way

World Make Way: New Poems Inspired by Art from The Metropolitan Museum of Art Edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins Published by Abrams Books for Young Readers with The Metropolitan Museum of Art ISBN: 978-1-4197-2845-7 Grades 4 and Up Book Review “Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is […]

Islandborn

Islandborn

Islandborn/Lola: Edicion en espanol de ISLANDBORN Written by Junot Díaz,  illustrated by Leo Espinosa Published by Dial Books ISBN:  978-0735229860 (English)/ ISBN:  978-0525552819 (Spanish) All Ages Book Review “Every kid in Lola’s school was from somewhere else. Hers was the school of faraway places.” But when her teacher asks her class to draw a picture of […]

Orbis Pictus Honor Book – Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, Their Fights, and the Flaws That Affect Us Today

Fault Lines

Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, Their Fights, and the Flaws That Affect us Today By Cynthia Levinson and Sanford Levinson Published by Peachtree Publishers, 2017, ISBN 978-1-56145-945-2 Grades 6-Up Book Review On this President’s Day, it is important to note that “not one of our first eight presidents had any real power” (p. […]

Orbis Pictus Honor Book: Chef Roy Choi and the Street Food Remix

Chef Roy

Chef Roy Choi and the Street Food Remix Written by Jacqueline Briggs Martin and June Jo Lee Illustrated by Man One Published by Readers to Eaters, 2016 ISBN: 978-0-9836615-9-7 Grades 2 and Up Book Review On the very first page of this innovative and immensely relevant picture book biography, readers are presented with a “Ramen […]

The Best of 2017

Photo by T. Horvath

It has been a hard year. In the United States and around the world, there is important work to be done to advance social justice. We realize now more than ever how much words matter. Words can inflict harm. But words can also transform lives. Words can shape the future and can give us a […]

Post-Orbis Pictus Nonfiction Musings

Grand Canyon

Imagine having hundreds of nonfiction books arrive on your doorstep. A teacher’s dream come true, right? When you’re a member of NCTE’s Orbis Pictus Committee, you are living the dream as you unpack box after box of titles, ranging in audience from preschool to young adult. The NCTE book award committees are somewhat unique in […]

NCTE Children’s Book Awards

Katie, Mary Ann, Erika

On Saturday, the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) hosted its Children’s Book Award Luncheon, at which Mary Ann and Erika, as committee chairs, announced the 2018 Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction (K-8) and the 2018 Charlotte Huck Award for Outstanding Fiction (K-8). Last week, SLJ’s “Curriculum Connections” newsletter published “The NCTE Book Awards: Opportunities for Collaboration,” […]