Jefferson Middle School Conducts Family Engagement Activity

JAMESTOWN – Jefferson Middle School fifth graders recently had an opportunity to better understand the main character in their English Language Arts book by creating yarn dolls and hosting a food tasting for their families.
The book, Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan, traces the journey of Esperanza, a young girl born into a comfortable life of privilege in Mexico in the 1930s, who is forced to flee to California and must rise above her difficult circumstances.
As part of their unit, which encompasses comparing and contrasting events, main ideas and supporting details, as well as learning more about themes, the yarn dolls represent a way Esperanza adjusts to her new life in California. The yarn dolls demonstrate bringing a part of the home she knew in Mexico to a home that’s unfamiliar to her.
The teachers also provided food that represented different phases of time in Esperanza’s new life, specifically her new job at the farm. Students invited family members to the food tasting so that they could experience this part of the character’s life.
Fifth grade teacher, Tara Mammoser, finds many ways that this book connects the past to the present.
“Throughout this unit we are making endless connections to current events such as, immigration, refugees, seeking asylum, human rights, border security and international relations,” said Mammoser. “This activity helps students make connections to historical, as well as, current events.”

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