Hamil-Teen Book Club: Battle #1 & 2

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February 23, 2017 by Andrea

In 2017, Radnor Memorial Library received a grant to create an awesome book club. Find more information here.

Our first book discussion was on The Crossover by Kwame Alexander. I chose it mostly because I knew most of the middle school was familiar with it and I wanted a book in verse that was a good, quick read. We discussed how narration in a book in verse is different than a regular book and how Lin Manuel used that idea in writing Hamilton. Most of the kids liked the book and we saw a few similarities in how different voices represented different moments and even both pieces have a Ten Rules segment. We started this session with the game humdinger. I had everyone put some songs (some Hamilton, some not) on slips of paper and participants had to guess the name of the song just from some spectacularly bad humming.

Our acitivty for the session invovled creating Spotify playlists with each song representing a different memory or feeling. Each participant had a funsized package of M&Ms and needed to curate their playlist based off their M&M colors. Here is the color chart:


16602217_1348374001873176_7127681434554391064_oIf you find Radlibrary on Spotify, you can see the playlists the kids created. It was fun, loud, and a little wild, but aren’t all good times?

Our next activity was the one I was rightfully most worried about, which was the hip hop dance class. I had contacted a local dance studio and they brought a teacher (from NYC!) and I only had two participants!! In hindsight, I should have known this group would be a little shy/uncomfortable but we went through with the class anyway.

The teacher was amazing, made everyone feel at ease, and made up a 16 count dance to a Hamilton song. The girls who were there (and me) had an amazing time and I only wish more kids would’ve come.

Check out our next meeting here.



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Me! My name is Andrea and I'm a Children's Librarian in the Philadelphia area.
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