Photographs, accessible prose, and personal accounts paint a portrait of innovative schools in this vibrant, globe-trotting guide. In post-Katrina New Orleans, students plant an "edible schoolyard." In Kenya, a school provides dowries for fathers--in exchange, their daughters go to school for eight years, rather than marrying. Hughes's examples of grassroots education in action are inspirational and informative. Ages 9-13. (Sept.)Copyright 2011 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Gr 2-5--While many children take their school routine for granted, others struggle to receive an education. This book examines innovative schools around the world, the educators who brought them about, and the students who attend them. The book has three chapters. "Working with the Environment" features boat schools, rainforest schools, and tent schools; "No School? No Way!," focuses on educational opportunities for disenfranchised populations; and "One Size Doesn't Fit All" is about unconventional programs in nontraditional settings. Each spread is devoted to one school, with five to seven paragraphs of text, vivid full-color photographs, and a map indicating its general area of the world. The strong emphasis on humanitarianism will move, excite, and inspire those reading about Hurricane Katrina survivors planting gardens, homeless children in India hearing stories on a train platform, and Maasai girls going to school instead of being sold into marriage. End materials include a world map with the locations of all 24 schools and resources to help readers get involved. As our children watch disaster footage and hear about human-rights violations, books like Off to Class will encourage them to help to "be the change they wish to see in the world."--Rebecca Dash Donsky, New York Public LibraryCopyright 2011 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.