As educators and legislators across the country debate how to improve public schools, the most vital factor often disappears from the equation—the relationship between the teacher and the student. According to veteran educators Rita and Marco Portales, this relationship is the central issue in the education of students, especially Latino/a students who often face serious barriers to school success because of the legacy of racism, insufficient English-language skills, and cultural differences with the educational establishment.
To break down these barriers and help Latino/a students acquire a quality education, the Portaleses focus attention on the teacher-student relationship and offer a proven method that teachers can use to strengthen the print and oral skills of their students. They begin by analyzing the reasons why schools too often fail to educate Latino/a students, using eloquent comments from young Latinos/as and their parents to confirm how important the teacher-student relationship is to the student’s success. Then they show how all educational stakeholders—teachers, administrators, state education agencies, legislators, and parents—can work together to facilitate the teacher-student relationship and improve student education. By demonstrating how teachers can improve students’ reading, critical thinking, writing, and oral communication skills across the curriculum, they argue that learning can be made more relevant for students, keeping their interest levels high while preparing them for academically competitive colleges.
Young Helen Keller, blind, deaf, and mute since infancy, is in danger of being sent to an institution because her inability to communicate has left her frustrated and violent. In desperation, her parents seek help from the Perkins Institute, which sends them a “half-blind Yankee schoolgirl” named Annie Sullivan to tutor their daughter. Despite the Kellers’ resistance and the belief that Helen “is like a little safe, locked, that no one can open,” Annie suspects that within Helen lies the potential for more, if only she can reach her. Through persistence, love, and sheer stubbornness, Annie breaks through Helen’s walls of silence and darkness and teaches her to communicate, bringing her into the world at last.
In Sister Mother Husband Dog, Delia Ephron brings her trademark wit and effervescent prose to a series of autobiographical essays about life, love, writing, movies, and family. In “Sister,” she deftly captures the rivalry, mutual respect, and intimacy that made up her relationship with her older sister and frequent writing companion, Nora. “Blame It on the Movies” is Ephron’s wry and romantic essay about becoming a writer and finding a storybook ending to her twenties, though it was just the beginning of a lifetime of taking notes. “Bakeries” is both a lighthearted tour through her favorite downtown patisseries and a thoughtful, deeply felt reflection on the dilemma of “having it all.” From keen observations on modern living, the joy of girlfriends, and best-friendship, to a consideration of the magical madness and miracle of dogs, to haunting recollections of life with her famed screenwriter mother and growing up the child of alcoholics, Ephron’s eloquent style and voice illuminate every moment of this superb and singular work.
Barbie and Ruth: The Story of the World’s Most Famous Doll and the Woman Who Created Her
This is the entwined tale of two exceptional women. One was a voluptuous eleven-inch-tall beauty who debuted at the 1959 Toy Fair in New York City and quickly became the treasure of 9 out of 10 American girls and their counterparts in 150 countries. She went on to compete as an Olympic athlete, serve as an air force pilot, work as a boutique owner, run as a presidential candidate, and ignite a cultural firestorm. The other was Ruth Handler, the tenth child of Polish Jewish immigrants.
A brilliant, creative, ruthless, and passionately competitive visionary, she was a mother and wife who wanted it all—a masterful entrepreneur who, together with her curvaceous plastic creation, changed American business and culture forever.
Barbie and Ruth is the incredible, inspiring, tragic, and ultimately redeeming true story of how one extraordinary woman built the largest toy company in the world and created an enduring international icon.
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That Used to Be Us: How America Fell Behind in the World It Invented and How We Can Come Back
America is in trouble. We face four major challenges on which our future depends, and we are failing to meet them―and if we delay any longer, soon it will be too late for us to pass along the American dream to future generations.
In That Used to Be Us, Thomas L. Friedman, one of our most influential columnists, and Michael Mandelbaum, one of our leading foreign policy thinkers, offer both a wake-up call and a call to collective action. They analyze the four challenges we face―globalization, the revolution in information technology, the nation’s chronic deficits, and our pattern of excessive energy consumption―and spell out what we need to do now to sustain the American dream and preserve American power in the world. They explain how the end of the Cold War blinded the nation to the need to address these issues seriously, and how China’s educational successes, industrial might, and technological prowess remind us of the ways in which “that used to be us.” They explain how the paralysis of our political system and the erosion of key American values have made it impossible for us to carry out the policies the country urgently needs.
And yet Friedman and Mandelbaum believe that the recovery of American greatness is within reach. They show how America’s history, when properly understood, offers a five-part formula for prosperity that will enable us to cope successfully with the challenges we face. They offer vivid profiles of individuals who have not lost sight of the American habits of bold thought and dramatic action. They propose a clear way out of the trap into which the country has fallen, a way that includes the rediscovery of some of our most vital traditions and the creation of a new thirdparty movement to galvanize the country.
That Used to Be Us is both a searching exploration of the American condition today and a rousing manifesto for American renewal.
Due to COVID-19, we are doing free contactless delivery for San Antonio Residents. If you are in the surrounding counties, but still in Bexar County, please email us to find out if we can deliver to you. Dismiss