Monday, April 28, 2014

In Courage Has No Color, Tanya Lee Stone explores the long history of racial discrimination in the US military through the history of the first black paratroopers: The Triple Nickles. Though very well-trained they never saw active combat, yet their views and hard work left an impact.
Why would a black man risk his life to help his country? The answer was simple. This is my country, my children’s country, and their children’s. It is up to me and many, many people of all races and cultures to fight the haters and racists to make this a better place to live, said Walter Morris, a member of The Triple Nickles.

The book is well informed using primary and secondary sources, as well as interviews with the remaining Triple Nickles. Stones did her research well and not leaving anything out that was important to tell the story. Readers will find the writing engaging with the story unfolding in each chapter.  Real Black and white photos are spread throughout, making the reading experience even better.

Click here to see the book trailer.

This is a great book to be taught in the class. I found this teachers guide for this book. Here is a clip that can be shown in class as well that gives a good and shorter version of the story. I think this is better for high schoolers than middle schoolers. I also think because this is such a powerful story I think it is important to get to know the author. Here is her website to find more information on her and other books she has written. Also I found this audio of her explain why she wrote the book.

Overall it was a great book. I had a hard time coming up with weaknesses. It is a powerful story that all teachers and students should read!


Heather Nelson said...

Vanessa, This seems like it could be a great book to pair with Fallen Angels. I am curious about the appropriateness of teaching Courage has No Color at the middle school level. I know you said it would be more appropriate for high school. Do you feel that this is the case due to the serious content, or is it too complex for students at the middle school level? If so, why? It is great to see such a strong text that uses both secondary and primary resources. Thank you for sharing!

Vanessa Chairez said...

Hey Heather,

I feel that it might be too complex for middle schoolers. I feel that in a high school setting you would get a better group discussions. And like you said it uses both secondary and primary resources and that can be great example for high schoolers because they will have to write papers using primary and secondary resources.

Heather Nelson said...

Thanks for the clarification, Vanessa!

Karra Badakhshanian said...

Hi Venessa, this book sounds really interesting. I have always been interested in learning about racial discrimination. I would definitely consider reading this book after reading your review. From reading your review, I could see this book being used in a History class but also perhaps an English Language Arts class too. I'm glad that the book involves real pictures from the time because I think this enhances the students comprehension. From seeing actual pictures, I think this will put the time period into perspective for them rather than just reading about it.

Before doing this unit, I had never known that books could have trailers, however, I am very glad that I know this now. One of my books had a book trailer and I loved it. From watching the one you provided, I found it very informational and important for readers to see. I think learning these men stories is very important and significant to our history. They are legacy and their story deserves to be told. The other links your provided were really good too and would enhance students learning and understanding of the book. I'm glad that you couldn't find any weaknesses for this book. You don't find that often with certain ones. Thanks for the review!

Vanessa Chairez said...

Thanks Karra for your comment! I agree this book would be great for History and English. Even if both teachers worked together with this story that would be great!