It’s no secret that our kids are fascinated by World War II. Resistance by Jennifer Nielsen tells about Chaya and her involvement in different resistance groups. Because she looks more Polish than Jewish, she is able to smuggle supplies into the ghetto in Krakow. Then after a failed mission, she is crossing the Polish countryside going to Łodź to Warsaw. She then ends up involved in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.
The book is well paced out and our kids really seem to be enjoying it. One cool monument that connects with this book is the Memorial to the Evacuation of the Warsaw Ghetto.
This is a book we dove into last year with 7th and 8th grade social studies because we were able to join in on a livestream with the author. Here’s the activity we used to prepare for it. This is one of my favorite books, and I know my ELA teachers agree.
Here is the book trailer for the book: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyswtDUSKUI
Basically, this book tells the story of 4 different teens. Joana is a Lithuania girl with nurse training, Emilia is a Pole who has dealt with some serious trauma, Florian is a Prussian who has a secret mission, and Alfred is a Nazi. They all end up onboard the Wilhelm Gustloff, which is the largest maritime disaster in history.
This book is incredibly well paced and a really great read! If you listen to youtube interviews with Ruta Sepetys, her motivation is so interesting. Salt to the Sea and Between Shades of Gray are trying to spotlight moments that may not get told. They have been showing screenings of Between Shades of Gray (which is put out as Ashes in the Snow because…well you know…), they asked Lithuanians high school students who knew someone who had been deported to Siberia. Every hand in the auditorium was raised. These works are creating powerful conversations around the world.