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Short & Sweet Chapter Book Club

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June 11, 2020: Sherlock Sam and the Missing Heirloom in Katong by A.J. Low

Available digitally: OverDrive | hoopla

Sherlock Sam and the Missing Heirloom in Katong by A.J. Low

June 25, 2020: Meet Yasmin! by Saadia Faruqi

Meet Yasmin! by Saadia Faruqi

Discussion questions

  1. Which story in the book was your favorite? Why? Did you like how the book was set up with little stories as part of a bigger book? 
  2. Yasmin has trouble coming up with an idea for the city her class is building- have you ever had trouble coming up with what to do for a school project? Later, Yasmin decides to make the roads and bridges uniting all her classmate's creations together, which was awesome! What would you have added to the city project if you could have built anything? Can you draw a picture of what you would have built? 
  3. Yasmin’s family has customs like special food, clothes, and holidays that are unique to her culture- does your family have special customs or traditions? Maybe special foods you eat every year or special traditions during holidays? 
  4. Yasmin plays dress-up with her Nani- what games or activities do you like to do with one of your relatives? 
  5. Yasmin’s family speaks both English and Urdu, which is a language from Pakistan. Did you learn any new words reading this book? Like ‘baba=father’ or ‘hijab=scarf’ or ‘sari=dress’ or ‘nani=maternal grandmother’ or ‘salaam=hello.’ What new language would you like to learn someday? 
  6. What did you think about the illustrations in the book? Did you like them? Did they help you understand the stories better? 
  7. What words would you use to describe Yasmin? Do you have anything in common with Yasmin’s personality? 

Resources

July 9, 2020: Mae Jemison by Laurie Calkhoven

Mae Jemison by Laurie Calkhoven

Discussion questions

  1. Had you heard of Mae Jemison before? What was one thing you learned by reading this book? 
  2. Mae was inspired by Uhura, the character on Star Trek. Is there anyone who inspires you?  
  3. Star Trek was a T.V. show Mae loved. If you could be on a T.V. show or a Youtube channel, which one would you pick? 
  4. Mae Jemison didn’t limit herself just to a career in science- she was an actress, a dancer, a doctor, a college professor and an entrepreneur.... What are the top 3 different jobs you might like to have someday? 
  5. If you could bring two things into space, what would you bring? (Mae brought an African American dancer poster and a statue made by a women’s group in West Africa). 
  6. Mae wanted to know why some people get sick to their stomachs in space and how to make them feel better. Is there a problem that you would like to know the answer to and how to fix it?  

Resources

July 23, 2020: Dragons in a Bag by Zetta Elliott

Dragons in a Bag by Zetta Elliott

Discussion questions

  • Where (or when) would you go if you could ride the transporter?    
  • Trub, Jax’s grandfather, talks about how some people like L. Roy Jenkins want the magic realm and the real world to be combined, and some want them to be separated. (page 116) If you were living in Jax’s world, what would you want to happen?  
  • What did you think of Jax’s idea to have a bridge between the two worlds of magic and reality? What do you think Jax means on page 142 when he says he can be a bridge between Ma and Mama?  
  • Jax takes on a big responsibility- returning the dragons to the realm of magic. Was there a time when you felt like you had a lot of responsibility? How did you feel? 
  • At the beginning of the story Jax says, “people never expect a kid like me to know anything about anything, and I’m used to it, but it still bothers me sometimes.” What does he mean by this? Do you think his race or the fact that he and his mom don’t have a lot of money make people doubt him? Does Jax begin to think differently about himself by the end of the book? Do you think he becomes braver?  
  • What did you think about the ending of the book? Are you excited to read book 2, The Dragon Thief
  • What was one thing you like about the story? One thing you disliked? 

Resources

  • Drawing activity: When Jax goes to the realm of magic, he sees a lavender sky, butterflies, turquoise grass, and hundred-foot-tall trees. If you could go to a magical dimension, what would it look like? 
  • Video: Interview with author Zetta Elliot

August 6, 2020: The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey

The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey

Discussion questions

  • Which of the Bad Guys was your favorite? Why? 
  • Would you recommend The Bad Guys to a friend? What would you tell them to get them to read the book?  
  • What was the funniest part of the book to you? 
  • What did you think about the layout of the book? 
  • If you could add another bad guy to the group who would it be? 
  • What did you think of the “rap” sheets in the book? Why do you think Aaron Blabey included those? 
  • Some people might say Mr. Wolf, Mr. Piranha, Mr. Snake, and Mr. Shark are failing at being good guys. What do you think? 
  • Aaron Blabey said one of the ideas behind The Bad Guys was to talk about characters who were tired of being judged by their appearance. Have you ever had someone judge you before they knew you? What did you do? 

Activities