Does Your Book Deserve My Vote?

Denver, Colorado, 4th grade teacher Greg Isaacs realized that “kids react to books much as they react to their favorite candidates: they like them because everyone else does, adding titles to their favorites list even when they haven’t read them.”

That led him to use his students’ love of their books to teach about the nature of running campaigns and choosing a candidate. “A book election is an election where we stand behind our favorite book instead of our favorite candidate,” explains student Bridget Gallardi. Listen to her interviews across party lines at Voting for a Book, part of the Youth Radio series on NPR.

And don’t miss Drop That Knowledge, the blog of Youth Radio Senior Producer & Education Director Lissa Soep, who says, “I came to Youth Radio initially thinking I could help teach kids to write, and in the end their writing products and methods have taught me how to be a better storyteller and better teacher.”

The blog title comes from a phrase used by a young journalist, and can be interpreted, she explains, “as the value and recognition of informal wisdom that comes from lived experience and grounded analysis.” I’m looking forward to her forthcoming book, written with Vivien Chavez, which shares it’s title with the blog, a book on youth radio, learning, and media culture, “composed of stories about young people making media while creating new relationships of power with adults as colleagues…Our goal is for readers to experience and apply Youth Radio methods and sense its vibe, a feeling connecting people with technology, knowledge, production, and most of all, with one another.”


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