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Astronaut Bernard Harris to read aloud to students


San Antonio ISD Special Guest Read Alouds are in full swing! On Wednesday, Aug. 12, Astronaut Bernard Harris will be reading Hidden Figures: Young Reader’s Edition at 11 a.m. in English, and Martha Martinez-Flores will be reading a special selection in Spanish at 1 p.m.


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On Aug. 5, award-winning author Sandra Cisneros was SAISD's celebrity guest. She led sessions in both English and in Spanish.


“Art is medicine for heart,” said Cisneros. “The magic of poetry is reading it out loud. How do we know how to read aloud unless someone does it for us?”


Cisneros read aloud from her book, House on Mango Street. The reading was followed by a Q&A session. Cisneros says a lot of her work is based on the spoken word.


“I capture voices and have an oral storytelling type of style,” she said. “You can’t benefit from it fully unless you hear it out loud; hear how I hear these voices. I gathered these voices up and poured them onto the page.”


“In the time of COVID-19, publishers have been very understanding about letting us do read alouds for kids,” said Lorraine Roussin, Library Media Services coordinator. “When you can actively engage with students and have a reader that students are listening to read live, it adds another dimension to the social-emotional impact that we are making. We are providing that comfort blanket to students who miss it, who have missed it for the past four months because of COVID-19.”


Years ago, Cisneros taught poetry at a school in SAISD, and she says she knows how hard this pandemic must be for students and teachers alike.


“I think this is a sacred time that we are living in; we have never experienced a world-wide pandemic like this, and we can’t escape it,” she said. “I think that students need to be reminded that this is a special time and they are being asked what no other child has ever been asked to do. I see it as we can be our own heroes. We have to rescue ourselves and be brave; this experience will make students be incredible human beings. They will remember this when they are old. They will be able to brag about the pandemic of 2020! They have the opportunity to transform themselves into that the hero they only read about.”







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