Bessie's Pillow is for middle to high school students so my 4th grader has not read it yet but I did preview the online resources that are available for it. There is a Teachers Guide with some suggestions and ideas for expanding learning. It has a good number of discussion and essay topics, oral history and life stories, some ideas for term papers etc. It is really a great resource for those with high school age students http://bessiespillow.com/images/teachers-resources.pdf. I will be printing off a few things for the girls to use when it comes time for them to read it.
There is also an additional resource located on the website called Bessie's America http://bessiespillow.com/bessiesamerica/. This resource offers things like photographs, radio shows the family would have listened to, Famous people, Food and recipes etc. These are all great ways to enhance your students learning experience. I loved the extra resources that were included I felt that they added a lot to the book and the learning experience.
Bessie's Story is one of tragedy and triumph. She has so many real struggles during her life but she never gave up. I can only imagine what it was like for her to flee her home at 18. Knowing that she may never see her family again. This book is a great piece of someone family history. Family history is important for everyone with out it our children will not know where they came from. This book was a well written and It reminded me of the way my grandmother used to tell our old family stories. It drew me in so well and the next thing I knew I was turning the last page wondering how I finished it so quickly. Its a book my girls will read when they get just a bit older.
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