In September, the American Library Association celebrated Banned Books Week. Who knew that this 5th grade lesson would turn into an amazing discussion about belief systems and values! We learned about who challenges books, where, and why. I presented several examples of books popular with my students but banned in many schools and libraries, including E.B. White’s classic and bestselling Charlotte’s Web (“talking animals are blasphemous and unnatural”), R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps series (“excessive violence”, “depicting occult and satanic themes”), and Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax (“unfair portrayal of the logging industry”).
To dig deeper, I placed a pile of banned books in the middle of each group table and instructed students to choose one. Their task: research information about the chosen book and create a poster. They used the following organizer:
I gave students the choice of tool to create their posters. Many used the Pic Collage app on their iPads, others used Google Drawing.