I have not read a book from an educators point of view before or looked at teaching resources created for a book, so this was an interesting experience.
Title: Immigrant from the Stars
Author: Gail Kamer
Genre: Science Fiction
Age Classification: Children’s
Publisher: Gettier Group LLC
Release: June 1, 2019
The story follows Iko and his family as they escape their home planet to avoid the Trinichian government. The land on Earth and need to blend in with the humans to avoid detection.
Looking at the enjoyment of reading the story, I would say this is quite fun for children. The science-fiction aspect and an alien MC would help to capture the interest of most children and there are different personalities displayed in the characters would give most children a character to connect to. There is also humour in the form of Iko’s lack of knowledge of the human world which I believe would be amusing to young readers.
It features very clear, accessible language for the most part but also includes a glossary at the end for the more difficult to understand words and terms. I also think the short chapters are a great feature and having them broken up into smaller sections within the chapters gives children more chances to take a break if they are not a strong reader.
Looking at this as an educational text, there are plenty of topics to choose from. Immigration is not only a word in the title but also an issue addressed in the story. This is linked to bullying, which is present from start to finish. Both of these topics are important to discuss in schools, so I am happy to see them being presented very clearly.
As I have not migrated to another country, I cannot comment on the accuracy of the representation. However, the representation of Iko being the new student learning the ways of his new school did seem pretty accurate. The bullying did not seem to be as damaging or permanent as bullying I have experienced – I have not befriended any of my bullies after they have made me feel like crap – but it still sends a message of trying to accept differences and be friends rather than hurt people because of what makes them different.
As for the teacher’s guide, I have not actually seen one before so I have nothing to compare it to. What I will say is that it appears to be thorough and asks thought-provoking questions about the story and the themes. I also liked that included activities and questions for each chapter. to keep you thinking throughout the story.
Star Rating: ☆☆☆☆
This is great option for children who are getting into chapter books and/or love aliens, as well as providing a great learning opportunity with its themes.
Have you read any books that represent serious topics in a fun way?
Share in the comments!
Until next time bibliophiles!