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Number the Stars

            Lois Lowry, the author of Number the Stars has written over twenty-three novels including: Us and Uncle Fraud, Switch Around, and All about Sam to name a few. Her books are said to fit into the same all-purpose theme that deals with human connections. Lois Lowry is a two time Newberry Medal winner for her books, The Giver in 1994 and Number the Stars in 1990. She has also received the Children's Literature award for her novel A Summer to Die and the Golden Kite award for her book Robby Starkey. .
             The book Number the Stars by Lois Lowry is about two families trying to survive the Nazi war in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1943. Annemarie Johansen, the main character, and her family are forced to hide away their friends and neighbor the Rosen's when the Nazis come to relocate Jews from their hometown. Ellen Rosen, Annemarie's best friend, is forced to stay and pretend to be part of the Johansen's family. Later, the Rosen's along with other Jewish families sneak on a boat to Sweden to free themselves from the Nazi government.
             I would recommend this book be read from 6th grade to 8th grade. One of the activities I would choose if teaching this book would be making a jackdaw. Some of the things I might include in the jackdaw would be paper dolls, a loaf of bread, an apple, a wedge of cheese, and a handkerchief representing some of the objects described in the book. This would allow the students to become more familiar with the struggles of the characters. Another activity that I might choose would be to have the children create a timeline of the events in the book. The children could record the main events of the story starting with the encounter Ellen and Annemarie faced with the Nazi soldiers on their way home. They could end with Ellen fleeting Denmark to the free lands of Sweden. An additional project to enhance the students education of the book could be to have them research the Nazi government in the 1940s by searching the internet, books, and old newspapers.

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