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Find more Web Connections for Book Links October 2009
The Web sites listed below were verified at the time of publication, but please check that they remain valid before using them in an educational setting.
Plan your next Family Literacy Night with the following literacy-related Web sites and online resources.
The Family Literacy National Institute for Literacy provides leadership on literacy issues, including the improvement of reading instruction for children, youth, and adults.
The International Children’s Digital Library Web site offers nearly 4,000 books in 53 languages, giving families from all over the globe an opportunity to read and grow together.
The Big Universe Web site houses online books searchable by age, category, and language.
The Reading Is Fundamental Web site’s interactive Leading to Reading section, available in both English and Spanish, offers a variety of literacy activities for three age groups: babies and toddlers, preschoolers, and grownups. RIF’s Reading Planet, designed for ages 6–15, offers an activity lab, interactive games, and automated stories in which the text is highlighted as it is read aloud.
Parents and children can surf together at PBS’s Between the Lions: Get Wild about Reading Web site, which features reading related stories, games, and songs.
The National Center for Family Literacy Web site provides details about initiatives, research and statistics on literacy, a newsletter, projects, an FAQ, press releases, and links to local literacy programs.
The National Children’s Reading Foundation strives to educate families, educators, and communities on the importance of early literacy. The foundation’s Web site provides reading tips for families and lists of recommended books organized by age range.
Why War Is Never a Good Idea: Books about Peace and Peace Activists
Jeremy Gilley’s Peace One Day Web site offers free educational lesson plans and resources for celebrating the U.N.’s International Day of Peace.
The U.S. Institute of Peace was founded to prevent violent conflict and promote harmony by training people to resolve conflict peacefully. The institute’s Web site also offers an annual essay contest for high school students.
Talking with Jonah Winter
Book Links has created a reproducible Obstacles Chart PDF for use with the author study accompanying Jonah Winter’s interview in the October issue.
New Spins on Old Heroes: Engaging Today’s Readers with Historical Figures
A free curriculum guide for Anne Rockwell’s Big George: How a Shy Boy Became President Washington (2009) is available on the author’s Web site.
Compassion through Friendship: Two Bobbies by Kirby Larson and Mary Nethery
A downloadable bibliography PDF featuring picture books about real-life animal friendships as well as Hurricane Katrina is available for this article.
For more on Bobbi and Bob Cat, including a downloadable coloring page, visit www.twobobbies.com.
Helping Others: One Child Can Make a Difference
The following organizations’ Web sites encourage youth activism in a wide variety of areas.
A nonprofit organization that supports and promotes education in remote regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan, the Central Asia Institute hosts a Web site that provides more information on the organization and ways kids can help, including the international Pennies for Peace program, which “educates children about the world beyond their experience and shows them that they can make a positive impact on a global scale, one penny at a time.”
Free the Children, the world’s largest network of children helping children through education, offers tips for youth, families, and educators interested in the contributing to the organization’s initiatives. The Get Involved section features fundraising ideas, tips on starting a service groups, and a curriculum guide.
The Global Fund for Children advances the well-being of children and youth around the world by offering grants to community-based organizations and documenting projects and issues facing children worldwide through film, books, and other media. The FAQs for Kids discusses philanthropy and ways that kids and their schools can help.
Founded by Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Wangari Maathai, the Green Belt Movement provides income and sustenance people in Kenya through the planting of trees. It also conducts educational campaigns to raise awareness about women’s rights, civic empowerment, and the environment throughout Kenya and Africa.
For over 60 years, Heifer Project International has battled global hunger by giving families revenue-producing livestock like cows, rabbits, and goats. Today, millions of families in 128 countries have been benefited from and later donated to this charitable organization. The Our Work section of the organization’s Web site features an interactive, animated presentation of how the organization’s initiatives work.
The Humane Society of the U.S. is the nation’s largest animal protection organization. Established in 1954, the HSUS seeks a humane and sustainable world for all animals and works to stop animal cruelty, exploitation, and neglect, while at the same time extolling the many benefits of the human-animal bond. The Web site’s kids section, Kind News Online features the Mission: Humane program, a list of a nationwide initiatives for young people.
The Peace Corps’ Web site has a wealth of information on the Peace Corps and its mission of helping people throughout the world. The Peace Corps Challenge Online allows users to assume the role of a volunteer and offers interactive games, stories from other cultures, letters from volunteers, and facts about other countries.
The Ryan’s Well Foundation “builds, educates, and motivates youth, educators, corporations, and community groups on the importance of clean water and sanitation for all.” The foundation’s impetus, a school lesson in which six-year-old Ryan Hreljac learned that people around the world lacked clean, safe drinking water, and the lasting effects of Ryan’s early efforts to bring water to a remote African community are profiled in the book Ryan and Jimmy.
UNICEF’s is dedicated to “one purpose: to help children survive. Almost 10 million children die needlessly every year. We believe that every child has the right to survive, and we will do whatever it takes to save a child.” The UNICEF Web site and its Voices of Youth section offers an enormous amount of information on initiatives and programs aimed at helping children and youth throughout the world. The Volunteer section of the site also profiles the efforts of inspiring volunteers like Marcus, who celebrated his ninth birthday by asking friends for donations to charity instead of presents.
What Kids Can Do was founded by an educator and a journalist with more than 40 years’ combined experience supporting adolescent learning in and out of school. The organization’s Web site presents stories about “young people’s lives, learning, and work, and their partnerships with adults both in and out of school” and spotlights youth community service and young individuals who are making a change in their world.
The Wildlife Conservation Society protects wildlife and wild lands through initiatives in science, conservation, and education. The organization’s Web site offers articles on saving wildlife, conserving land, and such global challenges as climate change, the consumption of natural resources, and wildlife health.
Youth Service America “seeks to improve communities by increasing the number and diversity of young people, ages 5–25, serving in important roles.” Founded in 1986, YSA is a resource center that partners with international organizations to expand the impact of the youth service. The organization’s Web site features extensive lists of award and grant programs, tools and Web resources, and ideas for celebrating Global Youth Service Day.
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