6 Things I’m Thinking About

A rare Saturday edition! My apologies for the late post. (Midterms are hitting hard.) Rest assured that every Friday hereafter, you can look forward to 6 things  🙂 Now, onward to discussing the multidimensional immigrant experience, first gen/immigrant students at school, and YA!

    1. This a reminder of why I started this blog! A compilation of immigration stories, from Latino NPR reporters’ families, shows that there is no single immigration story. They’re multidimensional and should be celebrated and appreciated in their nuance.
    2. More from NPR, how we teach English Language Learners. Not an exhaustive article, but still an illuminating read both for teachers in the classroom and for people outside of education.
    3. Supplementary reading: I recently wrote an article for my school’s arts & culture magazine on American Born Chinese, the ten year old graphic novel that opened up the possibility for first gen Asian Americans to appear in literature. Isn’t the artwork stunning?


      Source: Artwork by Michelle Ng, for Post- Magazine.

    4. Have you been keeping up with these Filipino American History Month tweets? I look forward to them every day.
  1. But has grit really even left YA? The New York Times follows the shifting of this dynamic genre.
  2. Need some inspiration and perspective? (Midterms aren’t exactly making my life better, either.) Buzzfeed collected these powerful quotes about the immigrant experience. Which one is your favorite? I’m fond of this one:

“It's said you can never go home again, and it's true enough, of course. But the opposite is also true. You must go back, and you always go back, and you can never stop going back, no matter how hard you try..jpg

Hope you’re off to a wonderful weekend!


I, Too by Langston Hughes

I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody’ll dare
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,”

They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed—

I, too, am America.

I’m sharing one of my favorite poems because there are no better words to reflect the problematic, fractious nature of an American history we are called upon to challenge today; and yet, there are no better words to muster pride.

It is from a place of intention and reflection (on what America is, on how I want to recognize the dignity of my fellow Americans) that I say I am celebrating Indigenous Peoples Day today. I hope you and your loved ones are having a wonderful weekend as well.

6 Things I’m Thinking About

The 6 things that intrigued me from this past week. Read on for diversity in literature news and how schools can support immigrant/first-gen children!


  1. October is Filipino American History Month! Celebrate with these books by Filipino authors. Look out for Something in Between by Melissa de la Cruz on this blog soon.
  2. Diverse books meets Netflix:  Publishers Weekly reports the We Need Diverse Books organization will soon be launching OurStory, an app that curates #ownvoices stories written from traditionally marginalized perspectives. One of my favorite picture books, Juna’s Jar, is in the database!
  3. If you’re looking for new ways to visualize “mirrors” and the need for diversity in children’s books, ReadingSpark has a thought-provoking  infographic. The illustrations underscore the fact that kids do take notice. So let’s do better!

  4. A Nashville middle school that specializes in nurturing the needs of recent immigrant students is the topic of this story from Chalkbeat. How do they do it? “Creative teaching,” article explains, so that teachers “aren’t just relying on English to help students master grade-level material.” But isn’t it so that creative, adaptive teaching methods benefit all students?
  5. I encourage readers from California to consider Proposition 58, which would give schools more freedom to expand bilingual programs for some of the most linguistically diverse kids in the country. So proud of my multilingual home state.
  6. The latest episode of the This American Life podcast follows a Somali refugee who wins a lottery that could make his dreams of living in the United States come true. Gripping, honest, and told with journalistic integrity above all, “Abdi and the Golden Ticket” invites reflection on the privilege of citizenship, and what it takes to become a naturalized citizen.

A corgi walks onto campus and suddenly life is filled with new meaning. Have a happy Indigenous Peoples Day weekend!