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Sunday, March 20, 2011

How Tia Lola Learned to Teach

Julia Alvarez is one of my favorite Hispanic authors because she writes about what she knows. She continues her story about her loving character, Tia Lola, with How Tia Lola Learned to Teach. In her first book, How Tía Lola Came to Visit Stay, Tia Lola comes to take care of Miguel and his little sister, Juanita, when their single mother moves them to Vermont. In her most recent book, Tia Lola is taking on an even larger role within the community. She is helping out at Miguel and Juanita’s elementary school by helping students learn Spanish. Each chapter begins with a famous Tia Lola saying in Spanish and English. Miguel is having a hard time adjusting to his parents having separate lives. His father has a serious girlfriend in New York and his mother is happy with their life in Vermont. Things are put in perspective when everyone fears that Tia Lola will have to go back to the Dominican Republic, because her visitor’s visa has expired. The entire community comes together to try to keep that from happening. Tia Lola will steal your heart once again! This is definitely going on my 6th grade reading list next year. These two books are geared to an upper elementary audience. Some great middle school novels by Julia Alvarez include Finding Miracles, Before We Were Free, and Return to Sender.

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