Monday, October 17, 2011
Margie is the only child living with her Mexican-Americans parents in California. Mexico is the country of their parents, but not for Margie. She was born in Texas, feels proud to be an American and tries to convince the other kids at school that she is one hundred percent American, just like them. But all of that changes when Lupe her Mexican cousin arrives from Mexico to live with Margie’s family. Margie thinks that it would be fun to have her cousin there as she doesn’t have any brother and sisters, but she finds herself embarrassed by Lupe in school and jealous of her at home. Even though Margie’s parents were born in Mexico and speak Spanish at home, Margie has been speaking mainly English since preschool. At school the Principal insists that Lupe should join Margie in her 5th grade class. Margie tries to tell her teacher that she doesn’t really know much Spanish and will not be able to translate for Lupe, but the teacher doesn’t seem to understand the situation. From that moment the image that Margie has created for herself starts falling apart. On the other hand, Lupe situation is not easy either. She feels her home is in Mexico and learning a new language in a new school represents a great challenge for her. Lupe realizes the dilemma that Margie is living and try to find ways to help her rediscovery her heritage. Nice story about family values and friendship and the experience that the immigrant has to go through to retain its own identity. Ages 8-9.
Dancing Home by Alma Flor Ada and Gabriel Zubizarreta.