Pairing with International Literature

One of the charges of the NCTE Standing Committee on Global Citizenship calls for members to “encourage the integration of global and international literature.”

On the surface, this charge seems straightforward and manageable. However, once educators set out to integrate global and international literature into their instruction, the task can become overwhelming. Classroom teachers might not be familiar with global and international literature and wonder which texts will integrate seamlessly within their classroom instruction. Teachers have the added challenge of pairing global and international literature with the exemplar texts listed in the CCSS. Classroom teachers would benefit from a current list of paired Common Core and Global texts. Fortunately, this resource exists.

The Globalizing the Common Core Exemplar List created by the Worlds of Words (WOW) International Children’s and Adolescent Literature Library, provides suggested pairings of fiction and nonfiction global literature with the CCSS exemplar list. The Globalizing book lists are organized across grade level bands, Kindergarten through grade 12. Within the levels, the literature is organized by theme and complexity.

For example, Table 1 features global nonfiction text pairings for the Common Core text, Martin Luther King and the March on Washington, written by Frances Ruffin. Elementary teachers can choose from 13 global picture books based on level information, global context, and theme/plot. Seven titles are featured in Table 1. Follow the link in the headline below to read about the six additional global titles not listed below.

Table 2 features four global fiction text pairings for The Scarlet Letter. Follow the link in the headline below to find global pairings for a variety of other grade 11-12 fiction works.

Table 1: Grades 2–3 Nonfiction Books: Paired Common Core and Global Texts

Table 2: Grades 11–12 Fiction Books: Paired Common Core and Global Texts

The Globalizing the Common Core Exemplar List makes integrating high quality global and international literature plausible. The WOW Library frequently updates titles on the Globalizing list so K–12 teachers can be assured they are integrating the newest literature into their literacy instruction. I encourage teachers to check out the Globalizing list and let us know about ways they used (or plan to use) the pairing suggestions to meet the Global Citizenship Committee’s charge to “encourage the integration of global and international literature” in their classrooms.

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