Written by Usborne Books & More Educational Consultant Jessika Olivares

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The focus of my contribution to the Joys in Teaching blog is to introduce readers to some of the children’s books that I use during our Literacy Club.  To give you some background, I am a fulltime Charter School Special Education Teacher and a part-time Educational Consultant for Usborne Books & More, this year I joined the team at the Joys in Teaching Tutoring Service as a Tutor/Workshop Instructor.  I am in charge of an afterschool Literacy Club for Joys in Teaching and am lucky enough to expose early learners to some of my bestselling children’s books.

Most educators will tell you that January is a month where we focus on getting our scholars to think about their goals and dreams.  This can be somewhat attributed to the fact that we spend quite a bit of time talking about Martin Luther King, Jr. and his “I have a Dream” speech.  With this in mind we planned on presenting the following texts to our Literacy Club members, which are children between the ages of 5 and 7.

Amelia Who Could Fly by Mara Dal Corso & illustrated by Daniela Volpari

This beautifully illustrated picture book is based on the story of Amelia Earhart as a young girl and dreamer.  Her dream to be as close to the clouds in the sky as possible takes readers on an adventure into moments with family members, such as building ramps and riding rollercoasters.  Amelia’s imagination and determination are undeniably contagious!  The biographical feature at the end of the book transforms the imaginative journey into a real-life goal reached by Amelia.  It will leave readers mesmerized and wanting to learn more about their fearless female protagonist.

Cordelia by Michelle Nelson-Schmidt

Cordelia is the protagonist of her own story about being strong willed and minded.  Cordelia has a huge imagination and soars through her colorful pages with her head held high until she encounters naysayers who tell her she really isn’t capable of flying.  Believing in herself and going against the grain she convinces herself that anything is possible—even her dream of flying!  This intriguing tale teaches young readers to “Be Your Own Hero!”  One of the best parts of sharing this particular gem with young readers is letting them show you how high Cordelia can soar using the Cordelia plush.

Both of these children’s books are Kane Miller Books and made available to the public through Usborne Books & More, and consultants like myself.