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The Great Migration: Journey to the North Hardcover – December 21, 2010


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Hardcover, December 21, 2010
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 730L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Amistad (December 21, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061259217
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061259210
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.2 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #169,216 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Between 1915 and 1930, more than a million African Americans left their homes in the South and moved to the North, says Greenfield in an introduction to this stirring collection of poems that honors those who took part in the Great Migration, including the poet herself. Each spread looks at a different stage in the journey, beginning with the uprooting: �Saying goodbye to the land / puts a pain on my heart,� says a farmer. The beat in Greenfield�s free-verse poetry amplifies the feeling of momentum, from the way news travels��They thought about it, talked about it, / spread the word��to the rhythm of the train that is felt even in the northbound passengers� questions, �Will I make a good life / for my family, / for myself? / The wheels are singing, / �Yes, you will, / you will, you will!� / I hope they�re right. / I think they�re right. / I know they�re right.� Greatly enhancing the impact of the words, Gilchrist�s moving mixed-media collages layer drawings, maps, and color-washed archival images that have the slightly distorted look of photocopies, giving some of the figures an almost ghostly, translucent appearance. Together, the immediate words, striking images, and Greenfield�s personal story create a powerful, haunting view of a pivotal moment in U.S. history even as they show the universal challenges of leaving home behind and starting a new life. A bibliography concludes. Grades 2-4. --Gillian Engberg

Review

Praise for Brothers & Sisters:“Timeless…clear and universal. Everyone can relate to the poems’ affection, frustration, laughter, jealousy, and family pride, as well as the love that always shines through.” (ALA Booklist)

Praise for Brothers & Sisters: “These are the sweetest poems for kids and families of all kinds.” (Charlotte Observer)

Praise for Brothers & Sisters: “Together their picture book celebrates how brothers get along with brothers, sisters with sisters, and various other combinations.” (Horn Book Magazine)

Praise for Brothers & Sisters: “A feel-good collection, equally suited to reading alone or aloud.” (Kirkus Reviews)

Praise for Brothers & Sisters: “Greenfield’s poetic observations and commentaries succinctly capture siblings at various ages and stages. The illustrator is equally as skillful. This book needs to be shared in classrooms, in storytimes, and especially within families.” (School Library Journal)

Praise for The Friendly Four:“Fun for reading aloud.” (ALA Booklist)

Praise for The Friendly Four: “Idealistic and nostalgic...perfect for classroom readers’ theater or as a way for a young child to share reading with an older sibling or parent.” (The Horn Book)

Praise for The Friendly Four: “A lively tribute to children’s imagination as well as an inviting introduction to free verse.” (Kirkus Reviews)

Praise for The Friendly Four: “Has an open accessibility, with its big print and visually inviting pages, and an upbeat warmth.” (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)

Praise for In the Land of Words:“[a] joy-filled, right-on tribute to wordsmithing in all its forms.” (Kirkus Reviews)

Praise for For the Love of the Game:“This book will set children soaring.” (ALA Booklist)

Praise for For the Love of the Game: “A powerful blending of words and pictures that delivers a message that needs to be heard by children.” (School Library Journal)

Praise for Honey, I Love and Other Love Poems:“Abounds with that special tenderness surrounding the everyday experiences in a child’s life. These poems beg to be read aloud.” (Boston Globe)

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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They really emphasize the humanity of the African Americans moving North for a better life.
Carey Hagan
I have since ordered the correct title, The Promised Land: The Great Black Migration and How It Changed America and will pay close attention next time I order.
Suzette Foscett
The illustrations by Jan Spivey Gilchrist are rich in texture and expression and compliment the poetry perfectly.
The Loopy Librarian

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By riofriotex on December 28, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This picture book of poetry is about the movement of African Americans out of the South between 1915 and 1929. Author and poet Eloise Greenfield, who experienced the Great Migration as a baby in 1929, tells the story in five parts of free-verse poems ranging from few lines to a few pages each. Jan Spivey Gilchrist uses mixed media collages to illustrate the poems, incorporating historic newspaper clippings and old photographs into her original drawings and paintings.

The jacket describes the book as being for ages 3-8. However, I feel the book is more appropriate for a slightly older age group, perhaps 5-10, particularly as free verse as well as some of the illustrations are rather complex. A short bibliography at the end of the book extends its range to even older students.

© Amanda Pape - 2010
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Melissa Sack VINE VOICE on January 14, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This story is told free verse poetry. It tells the story of a number of characters as they set out to move North. They are hoping to find a better life for themselves and their families. The South has become a dangerous place for African Americans and they are headed to freedom. This would be a great choice to read to a class during black history month.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Carey Hagan on February 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I was tremendously moved and impressed with this book of poetry. I am trying to find good titles for my second grader for Black History Month, and this was one of the best finds. I do think that the "recommended" age range of ages 4-8 is way off. It should be more like ages 7-16. The children reading it don't need to know a ton of historical background, but they do need to know some in order for the book to make sense. By the time they're in second grade, most of them have learned a little about slavery, prejudice, segregation, and the fight for civil rights. That's why I think the recommended age should start at age 7. Anyhow, the poems are beautiful, moving, and thought-provoking. They really emphasize the humanity of the African Americans moving North for a better life. I got a real sense of who they were: what they looked like, what their fears were, and how frightening the search for a new life really was for them. Each poem is a little story unto itself. Another reason why this is such a great book: a parent, teacher, or librarian can just read a few poems out loud and let them resonate with the children. You don't have to read the whole book for it to make an emotional impact. For example, I loved the poem, "Very Young Woman," in which a young girl about to travel north sees the sadness and fear in her mother's eyes: her mother has secretly packed her teddy bear at the bottom of her suitcase. Details like this really help the children/readers relate to the characters in the book. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Erin O. on January 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The Great Migration is a lovely history book. It tells the story of the great migration of African American families out of the South from different perspectives: young girl and boy, man, woman, at different stages of the journey.

The simple prose and illustrations helps to create a sense of loss and longing or a sense of hope as the people leave behind their old lives, family, and ways of life in search of new beginnings and hope. The author also included text that young children and adult can relate to and pulls on heartstrings. The illustrations have unique twists and are sparse yet charming.

This would be a nice addition to a school or classroom library. The poetry and free verse require an advanced level of comprehension thus it would probably resonate with children age five through grade school. However a child of any age could be introduced to the book and find some level of enjoyment especially while sitting in the lap of an adult and talking about the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By S. Kitter on December 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This wonderfully illustrated picture book is meant for children ages 3-8.

Author Eloise Greenfield and illustrator Jan Spivey Gilchrist do a wonderful job of simplifying the story of the Great Migration for young children through short poems and beautiful illustrations. It gives the reader a good idea of the hope and promise these African Americans must have felt when the left their old lives in search of a new one in the North. A great feel good book.

Highly recommend.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By The Loopy Librarian on December 23, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The Great Migration is a beautifully done book. The poems by award-winning poet Eloise Greenfield capture the emotions of each traveler on the journey. The illustrations by Jan Spivey Gilchrist are rich in texture and expression and compliment the poetry perfectly. The intended audience of 3-8 year-old children will walk away from this book with a clear understanding of The Great Migration, and older children will want to delve deeper after soaking up the heartfelt poetry.
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