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Steamboat School
by Deborah Hopkinson and Ron Husband


Overview - Missouri, 1847

When James first started school, his sister practically had to drag him there. The classroom was dark and dreary, and James knew everything outside was more exciting than anything he'd find inside.

But his teacher taught him otherwise.  Read more...


 
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More About Steamboat School by Deborah Hopkinson; Ron Husband
 
 
 
Overview
Missouri, 1847

When James first started school, his sister practically had to drag him there. The classroom was dark and dreary, and James knew everything outside was more exciting than anything he'd find inside.

But his teacher taught him otherwise.

"We make our own light here," Reverend Meachum told James.

And through hard work and learning, they did, until their school was shut down by a new law forbidding African American education in Missouri. Determined to continue teaching his students, Reverend John Berry Meachum decided to build a new school-a floating school in the Mississippi River, just outside the boundary of the unjust law.

Based on true events, Ron Husband's uplifting illustrations bring to life Deborah Hopkinson's tale of a resourceful, determined teacher; his bright, inquisitive students; and their refusal to accept discrimination based on the color of their skin.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781423121961
  • ISBN-10: 1423121961
  • Publisher: Jump at the Sun
  • Publish Date: June 2016
  • Page Count: 40
  • Reading Level: Ages 5-8
  • Dimensions: 11 x 10.2 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.9 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Juvenile Fiction > School & Education
Books > Juvenile Fiction > People & Places - United States - African-American
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Historical - United States - General

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2016-03-28
  • Reviewer: Staff

Hopkinson (Courage & Defiance) offers a graceful fictional recounting of a St. Louis minister’s courageous and clever response to a 1847 Missouri law that prohibited the education of African-Americans. A former slave who worked tirelessly to buy his freedom (as well as that of his parents, wife, and children), John Berry Meachum ran a secret school for black children in his church basement. In this reimagining, new student James complains about the darkness of the school, which is illuminated only by a candle. “We make our own light here,” replies Meachum. After the sheriff closes the school, Meachum builds a steamboat that his students help scrub and paint, then opens a new—and legal—school on the vessel, moored midriver on federal property. The determination of Reverend John and the children radiates from longtime Disney animator Husband’s elegant illustrations, finely crosshatched in ink and colored in muted blues, reds, and browns. Gentle yet forceful, it’s an affecting tribute to an unsung crusader for equal rights and education. Closing notes provide details about Meachum’s life and Hopkinson’s research. Ages 4–8. Author’s agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (June)

 
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