Joe Joe Rawlings knows something is going on at school and that it's not good. About the time he learns that gangs are forming in his school, his friend Tyrone starts pressuring him to join. Joe Joe has been reading about Ralph Bunche ... can he follow his example or will the pressure be too much?
The story is contemporary, relevant and positive. The illustrations are complemented by historical data, including photographs and quotes.
This is one of the most text-driven books we've read with our preschooler. Still, s/he sat through the whole story and was paying close attention to Joe Joe and his grandmother.
This is an outstanding book. It offers historical fact in a context that is relevant to today's kids. Unfortunately, the setting of gangs in elementary school is all too real.
This is a story for middle-school aged readers that provides history as well as problem solving solutions.
The story offers opportunities to explore gangs, peer pressure, friendship, personal values, perseverance, and the consequences of one's choices. The information on Ralph Bunche serves as a good baseline for doing more research.
8 to 10
5 to 9
Read with 4½ year old child.
Definitely borrow. The story is incredibly valuable for today's kids and is a book you can share that offers insight without sounding preachy.