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RESOURCES

Los Gatos Black on Halloween Reading Guide



INTRODUCTION

This reading guide is designed to accompany Marisa Montes and Yuyi Morales’ picture book Los Gatos Black on Halloween. Lesson content was written by Zapoura Newton-Calvert and was designed to start and deepen anti-bias/anti-racist conversations in families and other learning communities.


We hold the belief that anti-racist practice is a process of learning (and unlearning) over time. Reading Is Resistance sees reading as an opportunity to seed deeper conversations and possibilities for action around racial justice and co-liberation.


BOOK & LEARNING THEMES

IDENTITY, HALLOWEEN, CULTURAL TRADITIONS, EL DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS, APPRECIATION V. APPROPRIATION


BOOK SUMMARY

With dark and dreamy illustrations by Mexican illustrator/author Yuyi Morales and energizing rhymes fromPuerto Rican author Marisa Montes, this Halloween book takes the reader on an adventure where black cats yowl and skeletons dance through a fusion of Latinx cultures and practices. The rhyming story in verse mixes both English and Spanish words seamlessly transitioning from one to the next:”At medianoche midnight strikes/ The witching hour the werewolf likes.” It also delights with a surprise ending revealing what all of the spooky characters are scared of -- children!


This book can serve as a starting point for talking about the variety in global fall traditions, different ways Halloween is celebrated, and a bit about the Mexican aesthetic and practices of El Día de Los Muertos. As part of this, an important conversation about cultural appreciation versus appropriation can be sparked.

THE READ ALOUD





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