Keepsakes demonstrates how elementary teachers can draw on family stories to enliven and enrich the curriculum, giving children a direct connection with the past and an immediate sense of history. It is an uplifting look at a truly multicultural curriculum--one that celebrates differences and similarities and strengthens the bonds between families and schools.
Practical and broad in scope, Keepsakes draws on an ethnographer's descriptions of public and private school classrooms in urban, suburban, and inner-city settings. It suggests many different strategies for using family stories, from cooking and photography to oral history, storytelling, poetry, memoir writing, immigration studies, and living history theatre. Each chapter describes how family stories can enhance children's self-esteem, increase their creativity and confidence in academic skill, help build a warm classroom community, and involve families in natural and meaningful ways. The book includes guidelines for developing a family stories curriculum, photographs, examples of children's work, an annotated bibliography of related picture books for each chapter, and a list of resources for teachers.
In a time when many teachers are facing ever-changing family configurations and increasing diversity among students, Linda Winston offers a realistic view of what we mean by "family," a ready-to-go curriculum that encourages sensitivity, creativity, and cooperation among children, their teachers, and families. This book will have broad appeal to teachers in many different subject areas.