Happy Sunday Bibliofriends!
I hope those of you going back to school this week enjoyed your first week back! I absolutely love my new job at my new school. I even got up voluntarily on Saturday morning and finished off a little bit of work (crazy right?!). Coinciding with the school theme, today’s Six for Sunday is all about books which we think should be on the school curriculum. Most of my current reads are SFF so this list is quite narrow in genre-wide picks, however I always think that Science Fiction and Fantasy deserves a little more appreciation and attention on the school reading lists anyway! 🚀
For those who don’t already know, Six for Sunday is weekly meme hosted by Steph over at A Little But A Lot. September’s theme is ‘The School Month’.
Fictional Schools/Universities I’d Want To Go To
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
This one is an absolute MUST. Asides from the really important messages around racism, prejudice and gun-violence – the story and characters crafted within these pages is beautifully written that the whole book is powerful in multiple ways. It’s a really important read for our young generation.
- The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna
I really enjoyed how the female gang of warriors in this book supported and uplifted each other. Don’t get me wrong, they’re not all the pyjama-party-joint-bathroom-trips kind of friends but they bond together in the face of adversity. For me that’s a huge part of why I chose this book, especially in a world where women can quite often tear each other down. The African mythology vibes were spectacularly written too. You can my read my spoiler-free review here!
- The Rain Heron by Robbie Arnott
I love the way Robbie Arnott created a story which contains magical creatures but also contains morals about why we should take care of nature and the devastating consequences of what could happen if we don’t. This was one of my top ten books of 2020, you can read more about The Rain Heron here.
- The Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin
SFF Classic. Female author. Vast empire. I’m only gutted that I didn’t study this when I was in school.
- Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
I know, I know, I know that I keep going on about this book (one of my all-time faves!) but I do think it’s great for the curriculum. 1) It’s about a VR video game, which most kids love. 2) There’s an entertaining quest element. 3) It has an important theme about collaboration to overcome the massive, corporation villain. 4) I see so many kids who love playing computer games, but don’t love the subject of computing enough to think that rather than being a ‘YouTuber who plays games’ – why don’t they be the ones inventing them instead?!
- The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta / Everybody’s Talking About Jamie by Tom MacRae (stage musical)
This would make such a good comparison module! Both contain important themes and representations of identity, self-awareness, working-classes and prejudice as the main characters go on mirroring metaphorical journeys to going public with their drag queen alter-egos.
In Black Flamingo, Michael’s drag character and his performance raise awareness of racism and also many prominent real-world LGBTQIA+ people who have supported and bolstered this community. The format of the book as a verse novel would make for a good literary study too.
In the stage musical Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, not only is the music so fun and catchy – Jamie’s story about wanting to go to Prom as his drag-queen self is so endearing. The way he is viewed by his parents, teachers, classmates all add to the narrative of obstacles people in this community face just for expressing who they truly are. A playscript is a must for a literary curriculum too!
I love this pairing (and both of these titles) so much that I could practically write the whole module for it right now – perhaps not for the 8-9 year olds I actually teach though…! 🙈
Which books do you think should be on today’s study list for schools?
As always, leave your links below to your own posts or drop me a comment to chat!