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RESOURCES

The Dragon Thief by Zetta Elliott

Updated: Aug 16, 2021

CHAPTER BOOK READING GUIDE

PREVIEW

GUIDED ANTI-BIAS/ANTI-RACIST READING | GRADES 3-5+



WELCOME

This is a reading guide designed to accompany Zetta Elliott’s chapter book The Dragon Thief. We recommend that grownups read the focus book and the reading guide content BEFORE reading with young readers. This guide will help you prepare your own questions for your young readers and choose vocabulary, history, and other related topics to integrate into your learning and discussion.


Reading guide content was written by ZAPOURA NEWTON-CALVERT and was designed to start or deepen anti-racist and anti-bias conversations in families and other learning communities.


THEMES

DIVERSITY, MAGIC, FANTASY, FAMILY, FRIENDSHIP


HOW WE DESIGN OUR READING GUIDES

This reading guide is designed to be part of a larger life-long commitment to anti-racist reading and learning for the student and the facilitator. Reading Is Resistance sees reading as an opportunity to seed deeper conversations and opportunities for action around racial equity in our communities. We hold the belief that being anti-racist is a process of learning (and unlearning) over time.


The Learning for Justice Social Justice Standards (focused on Identity, Diversity, Justice, and Action) serve as guides for our work.


LEARNING FOR JUSTICE STANDARDS

The Learning for Justice Standards and Domains referenced in this lesson are for Grades 3-5. This book, however, can be used with a wide range of ages. Standards and Domains featured in this lesson are as follows:


A complete list of social justice standards, learning goals, and examples from the book are included in the full-length PDF.


SECTION ONE: CH 1-4 PREVIEW


SUMMARY

The Dragon Thief picks up where Dragons in a Bag left off -- with one missing dragon still in the non-magical world. Kavita is trying to care for the dragon, but it’s no easy feat. She finally shares her secret with her Aunty, and Kavita is surprised to find that her aunt not only empathizes with the homesick dragon but also is nonplussed that dragons exist!


With Ma in a deep enchanted sleep and a mint tin with a magical fairy, Jaxon has his hands full looking for a bridge between the magic and non-magic worlds.


DISCUSS

  • DIVERSITY.3-5.6 and DIVERSITY.3-5.10: What is “empathy”? Why does Aunty empathize with Kavita? Why does Aunty empathize with the dragon?

  • RADICAL IMAGINATION: Elliott writes, “In fairy tales, the hero always has loyal companions who help him complete his quest” (p. 16). What makes a fairy tale? What do you think of as part of a fairy tale? Who do you think of as participating in fairy tales? What are their identities? How might this story give you additional ideas about what a fairy tale can be?

  • DIVERSITY.3-5.9: Why does Aunty think it’s so important to help the dragon find its way home (p. 22)? What does “home” mean to Aunty?

The full-length PDF of this Reading Guide contains three full sections of discussion questions connected to the Learning for Justice Social Justice Standards.


RESOURCES AND ACTIVITIES

READ ALL ABOUT ZETTA ELLIOTT

LEARN MORE ABOUT SIDDI QUILTS

More resources are included in the full-length PDF.


READ NEXT

  • Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega

  • Find Your Voice: A Guide to Self-Expression by Zetta Elliott

  • Bird by Zetta Elliott

  • Dactyl Hill Squad by Daniel José Older



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