Resources to start conversations about homelessness


Will your classes be observing National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, November 15-21, 2009?

If so, start with some relevant literature—it can help begin conversations about an ever-growing social issue that directly impacts some of our students.

To find relevant online literature resources via, search for Library of Congress Subject Headings assigned to books. For example, explore the results from this “Subject” search on homelessness.

Also, here are six books and their online resources to get you started:

Fly Away Home by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Ronald Himler (Clarion, 1991)

A homeless boy who lives in an airport with his father, moving from terminal to terminal and trying not to be noticed, is given hope when he sees a trapped bird find its freedom.




A Shelter in Our Car by Monica Gunning, illustrated by Elaine Pedlar (Children’s Book Press, 2004)

Since she left Jamaica for America after her father died, Zettie lives in a car with her mother while they both go to school and plan for a real home.





Also Known as Harper by Ann Haywood Leal (Henry Holt, 2009)

Writing poetry helps fifth-grader Harper Lee Morgan cope with her father’s absence, being evicted, and having to skip school to care for her brother while their mother works.





Money Hungry by Sharon G. Flake (Hyperion, 2001)

All thirteen-year-old Raspberry can think of is making money so that she and her mother never have to worry about living on the streets again.






Tyrell by Coe Booth (Scholastic, 2006)

Fifteen-year-old Tyrell, who is living in a Bronx homeless shelter with his spaced-out mother and his younger brother, tries to avoid temptation so he does not end up in jail like his father.





Fat Kid Rules the World by K.L. Going (Putnam, 2003)

Seventeen-year-old Troy, depressed, suicidal, and weighing nearly 300 pounds, gets a new perspective on life when a homeless teenager who is a genius on guitar wants Troy to be the drummer in his rock band.





What other books do you like to use on this topic?  Let us know by leaving a comment!

photo of blog article's authorPosted by Carin Bringelson, MLS, Information Manager

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