This is an older post; take a look at this newer post to see how I have evolved over the past two years as I have grown my class library from a small affair to become the central pillar of the heritage speakers classes.
Thanks to Eileen H. of Milwaukee, WI for helping me put together much of this list.
One thing that I have been scheming to acquire is a class library of YA novels in Spanish that would be appropriate for our native speakers classes. My dream is that those classes be filled with age-appropriate reading materials, that students engage in reading circles, that our writing clinics grapple with themes brought up in the readings. It is a dream of a class not entirely tied to the one required book that we are all reading, but rather a vibrant class in which students are reading according to interest and even recommending good books to each other.
A few weeks ago I asked online colleagues for suggestions that do not include the usual suspects (i.e. Cajas de cartón, Esperanza Rising, Casa en Mango Street). Nor did I want the kind of challenging books that require teacher guidance to keep the students engaged (beloved as they may be I will place Chicano, La ciudad de las bestias, Caramelo and Rumbo al hermoso norte on that list). The idea, after all, is to foster a love of independent reading, not a sense that “with struggle you´ll eventually get through this $%&! book“. I am looking for books like El Jamón del sándwich, a novel about a girl with divorced parents who bounces between living with her father´s new family and her mother´s new family and feels like the ‘ham in the sandwich’.
I have compiled the suggestions into one list of 42 books that, if I bought them all, would cost about $700. That is about equivalent to our department budget for 2013-14… I wonder if I could convince my colleagues to do without whiteboard markers next year?
Here is the first group of books available to order online from Librería Norma (Colombia). If you have a native speakers program and are interested in building a free reading class library then bookmark this post because I´ll be adding more books to this list in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, are there any suggestions you would add?
Agapea.com is another source. FREE SHIPPING to the US for orders over 15 euros!