Armida Lizarraga

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War and refugees

Given the world we live in, where a picture of a kid who is dazed after a bombing is becoming normal, our children are exposed more and more to the topics of war and refugees from war. Even when we live in safe homes, neighborhoods or countries, we must expose...

Metacognitive books: How early should they be introduced?

During the last few months I’ve encountered a number of children’s picture books with a self-reflective or metacognitive approach. The texts encourage readers not just to reflect or think (cognitive) but to think about their thinking (metacognitive). Since the books’ illustrations were eye-catching and the topics were relatable, I read...

Books that inspire community

Lately — and by accident — I’ve been reading Spanish versions of many French-authored children's picture books. For some reason, most of the books I’ve recently bought from bookstores in Lima and Buenos Aires to use for storytelling in Spanish were translated from French authors. I didn’t realize it at...

Books in Spanish: A problem of access?

When working as an elementary teacher in the United States, I found it hard to find original children’s literature in Spanish language — books originally published in Spanish, that is.As a fourth-grade public school teacher in a dual-immersion and bilingual transitional programs in Colorado and North Carolina, it was difficult...

The scoreboard is against them

Bernardo is a second grader. Today his teacher is reading about the origins of the Amazon River to the class. Bernardo knows the river because it is right by his grandma’s house.The reading today says that the Amazon is the widest, vastest, and most plentiful river in the world. He...

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