Immigration, Then and Now--Immigration to Washington Heights, NYC Grades 6-8
Annotation:Compilation of Historic Photographs by accomplished local historian. The history of Washington Heights, Inwood, and Marble Hill is interesting not only because the communities played a major role in the American Revolution but because of their cultural and educational institutions and residents whose culture and ethnicity have contributed to the well-being of the area. These communities have always been a haven for immigrants who have come here to live and work since the pre-Columbian era. Native Americans came to trade goods, Jewish refugees came during the 1930s to flee the tyranny of the Nazis, and since the end of World War II there has been an influx of the Latino community. The area is also noted for its dolomitic Inwood marble, which has been quarried for government buildings in New York City and some of the federal buildings in Washington, D.C. Through vintage images, Washington Heights, Inwood, and Marble Hill illustrates the transformation of this area over the decades.
Annotation:Short Fiction collection--many races to Lower East Side. Lexile 840. Beautifully written collection of short stories which depict the same few blocks of the Lower East Side at the turn of the century from different inhabitants' points of view. Strong tapestry of the diversity and commonalities of being poor immigrants in that time and place.
Annotation:Non-fiction. Lexile 990. Photographs and text document the experiences of five individuals who came to live in the Lower East Side of New York City as children or young adults from Belarus, Italy, Lithuania, and Romania at the turn of the twentieth century.
Annotation:Graphic Novel. In this wordless graphic novel, a man leaves his homeland and sets off for a new country, where he must build a new life for himself and his family.
Annotation:Non-fiction --a genealogy of prejudice. Lexile 1090. Race. You know it at a glance: he's black; she's white. They're Asian; we're Latino. Racism. I'm better; she's worse. Those people do those kinds of things. We all know it's wrong to make these judgments, but they come faster than thought. Why? Where did those feelings come from? Why are they so powerful?
Annotation:Historical fiction--Austrian Jewish. Lexile 950. During the Nazi persecution of the Jews in Austria, twelve-year-old Julie escapes to America to live with her relatives in New York City. She is torn between sorrow at leaving her family and the joy of her success performing on Broadway.
Annotation:Current historical fiction--Afghanistan. Lexile 800. Escaping from Taliban-controlled Afghanistan in the summer of 2001, eleven-year-old Fadi and his family immigrate to the San Francisco Bay Area, where Fadi schemes to return to the Pakistani refugee camp where his little sister was accidentally left behind.
Annotation:Biography--Italian to Brooklyn. A biography of an Italian peasant who immigrated to America in the early twentieth century and endured poverty and the difficult life of an unskilled laborer, determined to become a published poet.
Annotation:Historical fiction--Vietnam. Lexile 800. Through a series of poems, a young girl chronicles the life-changing year of 1975, when she, her mother, and her brothers leave Vietnam and resettle in Alabama.
Annotation:Historical fiction, Vietnam. Lexile 810. Thirteen-year-old Mai and her family embark on a dangerous sea voyage from Vietnam to Hong Kong to escape the unpredictable and often brutal Vietnamese government.
Annotation:Realistic fiction--Japanese-American. Lexile 740 but mature content. Chronicles the close friendship between two Japanese-American sisters growing up in rural Georgia during the late 1950s and early 1960s, and the despair when one sister becomes terminally ill. kira-kira (kee' ra kee' ra): glittering; shining Glittering. That's how Katie Takeshima's sister, Lynn, makes everything seem. The sky is kira-kira because its color is deep but see-through at the same time. The sea is kira-kira for the same reason. And so are people's eyes. When Katie and her family move from a Japanese community in Iowa to the Deep South of Georgia, it's Lynn who explains to her why people stop them on the street to stare. And it's Lynn who, with her special way of viewing the world, teaches Katie to look beyond tomorrow. But when Lynn becomes desperately ill, and the whole family begins to fall apart, it is up to Katie to find a way to remind them all that there is always something glittering -- kira-kira -- in the future. Luminous in its persistence of love and hope, Kira-Kira is Cynthia Kadohata's stunning debut in middle-grade fiction.
Annotation:Historical fiction--Caribbean immigration to Harlem. Lexile 730. A girl from Barbados comes to New York City and is appalled at the poverty surrounding her in Harlem. She judges her surroundings and classmates in school until she makes a friend who helps support her through the loss of her mother and her difficult relationship with her strict father.
Annotation:Realistic fiction-Mexican-American. Lexile 780. After eleven-year-old Zitlally's father is deported to Mexico, she takes refuge in her trailer park's forest of rusted car parts, where she befriends a spunky neighbor and finds a stray dog that she nurses back to health and believes she must keep safe so that her father will return.
Annotation:Historical fiction--Albania. Lexile 770. In 1998, when the Kosovo hostilities escalate, Meli's life as an ethnic Albanian changes forever after her brother escapes his Serbian captors and their family flees from one refugee camp to another until they can get to America.
Annotation:Historical fiction--Germany to Western US. Lexile 780. Thirteen-year-old Trina's family left Bohemia for a Colorado coal town to earn money to buy a farm, but by 1901 she doubts that either hard work or hoping will be enough, even after a strange fish seems to grant her sisters' wishes.
Annotation:Realistic fiction--Albanian & African-American. Lexile 690. For younger readers. A poignant story about the difficulties of leaving everything behind and the friendships that help you get through it. Fleeing war-torn Kosovo, ten-year-old Drita and her family move to America with the dream of living a typical American life. But with this hope comes the struggle to adapt and fit in. How can Drita find her place at school and in her new neighborhood when she doesn't speak any English?
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Immigration to Washington Heights/Inwood, NYC: Immigration Then & Now - Using maps, first hand accounts, secondary sources, and historical fiction, this collection tracks changes over time in Washington Heights, NYC from the colonial period to present day. The list begins with Washington Heights' history - its original Lenape inhabitants, its colonial ties to George Washington (seen on right), though many waves of immigrants from Europe to its modern connections as a haven for German Jewish populations fleeing the Holocaust - and leads right up to present day. This list also directly ties into the Empire State Information Fluency Continuum Standards as it encourages students to approach their work with the following standards in mind: 'we are thinkers', 'we are explorers', and 'we are citizens' (Grades 6-8)