Earlier this summer, as the Malden Reads steering committee began its book selection process for 2021, it faced a season and mood in the community and country very different from its previous ten years. On top of the COVID-19 pandemic, the country has been wracked with a coming to terms of 400 years of systemic racism, sparked by the murder of George Floyd, and brought to life by protestors from coast to coast.
These important and ongoing events informed the discussions of this year’s books. Once the book is selected, Malden Reads will invite the community of Malden to read the book and participate in a series of events related to the book’s themes.
Malden Reads Story Time Successful Summer and Beyond!
Malden Reads established new collaborations this summer to bring stories to life.
Linda Zalk, former Malden School Educator/Simmons University’s Adjunct Faculty, and Elena Martinez, Graphic Designer/Yoga teacher, took the weekly themes from Malden Arts Monday to create Malden Reads Story Time. They presented the stories with a rich educational curriculum including social emotional learning and sensory experiences to enhance development of visual, auditory and kinesthetic intelligences which support academic learning.
The social distancing experience inspired Linda to write an original story that teaches kids the importance of wearing a mask. The story was produced in a little booklet format and distributed to local daycares and Malden Public library.
“Where are you from?” is a question that is often asked and usually replied to with a geographic location. Yet we are so much more than a place on a map. We are from types of food, of people and customs. We are from habits and feelings and smells and sounds. We are from places we’ve been to and challenges we’ve overcome. These influences are just as much “where we are from” and what makes us who we are as the country or region or city of our birth.
With your contributions, Malden Reads can host programs for families and kids, create community connections and promote cultural education through events related to the current book selections. Thank you!