Vaunda Micheaux Nelson credits her love of books to her late parents, who faithfully read to her every night. Through her work she hopes to give young people some of what her parents gave her — opportunities to grow through story. The author has been a teacher, newspaper reporter, bookseller, recreation specialist, children’s librarian, and has served on Newbery and Caldecott Awards committees. She holds master’s degrees from The Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury College, Vermont, and from the University of Pittsburgh School of Library and Information Science. The Pennsylvania native currently lives in New Mexico, with her husband, Drew, co-author of this book.
Read Aloud Tips
Read at a consistent and steady pace, not too slow or not too fast.
Encourage the students to make mental images of what’s being read, aside from the illustrations.
Make this book memorable. Incorporate some sort of activity, snack, or memorabilia piece to have the students remember the story.
Information about Juneteenth traditions–such as red velvet cake and red soda pop as symbols of bloodshed in the battle for freedom–will help young readers plan jubilees of their own. – Jennifer Mattson, Booklist