The Classroom Bookshelf
Inside The Classroom Bookshelf

Confronting Anti-Black Racism with the Middle Grade Novel What Lane?

Sixth grader, Stephen, lives in Brooklyn, is into sci-fi, and is a mixed race tween who has started to painfully experience the ways that white people in his neighborhood treat him differently than his white friends. If you are wondering how to begin confronting Anti-Black racism in your classroom, start with What Lane?

Hearing the Melodies of Classmates with Your Name is a Song

“I’m not coming back ever again.” A young girl stomps out her anger and frustration as she walks with Momma at the end of the first day of school. The source of her distress? No one could pronounce her name. “Not even the teacher?” queries Momma? As they pass by a street musician, Momma offers some advice: “Tell her your name is a song.”

Complicating and Celebrating Identity: Where Are You From?

The titular question of this picturebook is one that anyone who appears or sounds different in a given social community has probably heard. Though simple in its phrasing, the implications for asking and answering “Where are you from?” are anything but simple.