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April Classroom Connections

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Getting Involved
This month’s topic gives students and families a chance to get involved. In Crenshaw, Jackson experiences both hunger and homelessness. This month, your class can research how these issues affect children in your community or state, then take action. Here are some ideas:

- Host a food drive. For more information, see this link on the Crenshaw web page:
- Write letters to leaders in your town or community asking them to propose or support legislation that helps children experiencing hunger.
- Brainstorm ways for your community to provide lunch for students in the summer. See organizations like Lunch at the Library for more information:
- Collaborate with a local food pantry or homeless shelter. See if your students can conduct a sock drive, toiletry drive, or other drive for local organizations. It’s important to see what organizations are actually in need of before beginning a drive or fundraiser.
- Do research! See the Newsela and Wonderopolis links below for nonfiction articles to pair with Crenshaw.

Nonfiction Articles to Pair with Crenshaw

Crenshaw has some incredible description passages, especially about Jackson’s imaginary friend. Either read outloud or listen to chapters 1 and 46 and have students draw using as many details as possible. The first time you read/listen, allow students to write down details they hear and the second time, encourage students to begin sketching! 

Chapter 1 - a very detailed description of Jackson’s oversized-cat imaginary friend.
Chapter 2 - Crenshaw describes other imaginary friends he’s met and describes where they wait as a teacher’s lounge. Such a fun visual of imaginary friends waiting to be needed!

A Framework for Understanding Poverty by Ruby Payne
One of the most valuable professional development books we’ve read as educators is Ruby Payne’s A Framework for Understanding Poverty. To us, this is a must read for any teacher in a Title 1 school. 

If you have any ideas or thoughts you’d like to share about connecting to this month’s DBC theme in your classroom, please comment below!