Harriet Tubman’s name has become synonomous with the American Underground Railway. She was a conductor on the line that helped former slaves find freedom and she never lost a single passenger.
Title: Harriet Tubman
Series: Little People, Big Dreams
Author: Isabel Sanchez Vegara
Illustrator: Pili Aguado
ISBN: 9781786032270 Language: English
Themes: America, history, slaves
What’s it about?
This books tells the life of Harriet Tubman in story fashion. It begins when she is a very young child living with her parents as slaves on a plantation and follows her life through the most important events in her life.
The font is very easy to read for beginning readers and the sentences are short and concise. This book is consistent in length and style of the other books in the series. The illustrations complement the text very well.
The quirky illustration style may not suit everyone but the story it tells overrides that for me.
This one is about to be published on the 5th June 2018 and is another addition to the Little People – Big Dreams series. This book is about Harriet Tubman who is probably more known to those in American than us outside. For me personally I had heard of Harriet prior to reading this book but only had a vague sense of who she was and her involvement in the Underground Railroad.
I do like that there is consistency in this series – all the books have been written by the same author – and while the illustrators have varied there is an odd sense of consistency there as well.
This book involves some serious topics
especially around slaves and how they were treated.
This book involves some serious topics especially around slaves and how they were treated but it doesn’t shy away from it. It deals with an instance of where Harriet was hit on the head and then discusses as to why that event was important for the decisions that she was about to make.
Clearly this book has a lot of value in history lessons, more so in America but it can be used to draw a contrast with any instances of slave or forced labour within any country’s history, but what is could it be used for? Creating timelines is a great way to utilise all the books in this series because the events are presented chronologically.
If you want to look a bit deeper then I would suggest breaking up the reading of the book with both reflective and predictive activities. Discussions as to why the event was important, what might Harriet do next, what would happen if she was caught? These type of questions can assist in students understanding the danger that any one who attempted to journey on the Underground Railroad faced.
A great point to look at in this book is that it doesn’t matter where you come from it only matters how hard you work for your dreams. I hear a lot of children nowadays saying they “can’t” be (insert a profession) because of their background and in most cases it’s just excuses – ones they seem to have picked up in a big way from many of their parents. This book demonstrates that by working hard and going after her dreams Harriet was able to achieve a lot in her lifetime for herself, her family, and even complete strangers.
One other thing I really like about this series are the historical notes at the back of the book as well as a few recommended companions books – this makes planning for a unit of work so much easier!