Detailed, color paintings and question-and-answer text bring to life traditional ways, customs and everyday world of the Iroquois--one of the most powerful and influential nations of Native American.
About the Author
How did people escape on the Underground Railroad? What was it like to land on Ellis Island?How did it feel to travel the Oregon Trail in a covered wagon? Ellen Levine has revealed worldsof fascinating adventure with her nonfiction books for young readers.
Although Ellen Levine enjoys reading and writing fiction, most of her books for young readershave been nonfiction. “Writing nonfiction lets me in behind the scenes of the story. I enjoylearning new things and meeting new people, even if they lived 200 years ago.”
“Real heroes,” Levine says, “aren't necessarily on TV or in the news. They can be ordinarypeople who are willing to take risks for causes they believe in. Nonfiction offers a way tointroduce young readers to real people who have shown tremendous courage, even when facedwith great danger. All of us have the potential. And one doesn't have to be a grown-up,” sheadds.
When she's not writing, Levine likes to share the excitement of research and the importance ofaccuracy with young readers. “Many young people think research is dull; you go to anencyclopedia, copy information, give it a title, and call it a report.” Using her books asexamples, Ellen explains how to get other, more interesting information. “I may not mention theexact words, but I talk to young people about primary and secondary sources. If I'm speakingwith third graders, I ask them, 'Where would I go if I wanted to find out what it's like to be athird grader?' Most will say, 'Read a book.' But when they say, 'Ask a third grader,' I knowthey've understood what I mean by a primary source of inspiration.”
For If You Were an Animal Doctor, for example, Ellen witnessed an emergency operation on acow. While doing research in Wyoming for Ready, Aim, Fire!, her biography of Annie Oakley,she got to hold the gun Ms. Oakley is believed to have shot in the presence of the Queen ofEngland. “It gave me such a strong feeling about this person,” she says. “That's part of research,too.”
Ellen Levine is the author of many acclaimed books, both fiction and nonfiction. Among them:If You Traveled West in a Covered Wagon, If Your Name Was Changed at Ellis Island, I Hate English!, If You Lived at the Time of Martin Luther King, and Secret Missions. Her recent book, Freedom's Children: Young Civil Rights Activists Tell Their Own Stories, was named one of the Ten Best Children's Books of the Year by The New York Times, and Best Book for Young Adults by the American Library Association.
Ellen divides her time between New York City and Salem, New York.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
If You Lived With the Iroquois based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
This story is a great way to teach students about a Native American culture. The book gives a history and a map of their settlement. The book also discusses many topics that children would want to know when studying a new culture. The book addresses food, entertainment, and how the tribe members interact with one another. The colorful images in the story are appropriate. Many earth tones are used to represent the Native Americans. However, when things are supposed to be colorful they are.After reading the book children can discuss other Native American tribes and share if they are a member of one.
After a brief introduction to introduce the Iroquois and a map to show the land they occupied the rest of the book follows a question and answer format. The book is very thorough and every possible topic that would interest a child is presented: food, clothing, family relations, lodgings, games, sports, what boys and men did opposed to what girls and women did and many more topics. The text is written to the reader in the second person speaking to "you" directly as if you had asked the question yourself. The book is profusely illustrated with each page being completely coloured itself, no white pages to be found here. We read a previous book in this series earlier this year on the Hopi Indians and my son enjoyed this one much more. I'm not sure whether it was because of the the writing itself or because these Indians are from where we live that he had more interest.I only have a couple of minor problems with the book. One is the few pages that discuss the Iroquois creation story. It is compared to the Biblical creation story and then to many other religious creation stories and it is noted how similar they all are. The tone is that all religious stories are just that, stories. I found that disrespectful, and, personally, I saw very little similarities between the Iroquois and Biblical views of creation. The other was that when discussing the area, the words America or the United States were often used when it is obviously clear from the map that the area inhabited by the Iroquois is equally in modern day Canada and the US. I always used the word North America and sometimes even used just the word Canada. If they can just use United States, I can just use Canada! But otherwise everything else was unbiased. The book only pertains to pre-white man times which enables it to keep to a very evenhanded presentation.