California Educator

February/March 2023

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G E T R E A D Y to celebrate with your students and school community with a focus on books and the written word, special guest readers and more. Find ideas and resources at And yes, reading and literacy are year-round activities. Start with CTA's 2023 California Reads, teacher-vetted, engaging books for all grade levels — a few are mentioned below. Find them all at, where members can also find links to buy the books at a 20 percent discount. NEA offers a monthly calendar of recommended books, authors and teaching resources that promote diversity and inclusion at Read Across America Day: March 2 In Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre, author Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrator Floyd Cooper provide a powerful look at one of the worst incidents of racial violence in our nation's history. The book traces the history of African Ameri- cans in the Greenwood district of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and chronicles the devastation that occurred in 1921 when a white mob attacked the Black community. News of what happened was largely suppressed, and no official investigation occurred for 75 years. This picture book sensitively introduces readers in grades 6-8 to this tragedy and concludes with a call for a better future. A free educator guide is available to download. What do you do when an octopus captures Grandma? Put on your superhero cape and rescue her! Octopus Stew's author/artist Eric Velasquez, the son of Afro-Puerto Rican parents who encouraged music and storytelling, draws from his upbringing to present an imaginative, hilarious story about family, food, creativity and more. English text intertwines with Spanish phrases; included are a glossary and a recipe for — octopus stew. For grades 1-2. In Swishing, by author Victoria Monroe and illustrated by Shawn Richardson, grade 3-5 readers are taken along on Victorica's journey of identifying as deafblind, facing prejudice and playing basketball. The book explores important topics such as diversity, acceptance and discovering identities. Also included are questions for pre-reading and post-reading discussion. 10 In the Know N E W S & N O T E S

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