Montgomery County Public Libraries and the Jewish Council for the Aging Heyman Interages® Center host intergenerational book clubs. Students and older adult community members read assigned books and have discussions about the book while enjoying conversations with and hearing perspectives from members of another generation. Students are asked to write a short essay, create a poster or flyer about what they learned from the book.
Middle School students recently participated in the Interages "Refugee" Book Club. They offered insights after reading the book Refugee by Alan Gratz, in which three different children have the mission to escape hardship during three time periods, including Nazi Germany, Cuba and Syria.
Some of students said;
"Reading the book makes me count my blessings;" "This historical fiction teaches history in a fun way. After reading this book, I became a fan of history fiction books;" " I want to participate in the next book club. I didn't like reading, but after this book club I realized that it is wonderful and also it is nice to discuss the book with different people. "I used to hate history, but now after I read Refugee, I really like history now and it makes me want to read more historical books and I wonder what book we are going to read if we meet some other time in the reading club."
During November and December, Interages will be holding two more book clubs, one for middle school students and one for high school students.
Students grades 6 to 8 will be reading Ghost Boys by award-winning author Alan Jewell Parker Rhodes. This is a powerful story about a black boy killed by a police office presenting connections through history.
Students in grades 10 to 12 will be reading, A Very Large Expanse of Sea by Tahereh Mafi. Set in 2002, the main character, Shirin, a sixteen-year-old Muslim girl who’s tired of being stereotyped, meets someone who is kind to her despite coming from two irreconcilable worlds.