Teaching

Big Picture 6: Persistence

Check out author, Julie Leung’s website. Check out illustrator, Julie Kwon’s website.

May is Asian/Pacific Heritage Month and I am celebrating with a post about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American female pilot in the U.S. military.

Hazel Ying Lee joined the military in 1943, when the Women’s Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) program was created in response to the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Unfortunately, I had never heard of these women until I saw an episode of Expedition Unknown with Josh Gates (Season 5, Episode 68). Check it out when you get a moment.

When I saw the episode, I wondered why these brave women and their efforts to help during WWII aren’t more well known, so I was very excited to find Julie Leung’s picture book, The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee. Not only do you get a story about a woman breaking barriers and becoming a pilot, but you also get the story of a Chinese American who persisted, despite the racism and segregation she faced. A woman who loved and served her country even though her country did not always love and serve her.

While I could not find a Lexile level for Fearless Flights, the book is listed with an audience of Preschool-Grade 3 on Amazon. I recommend using it with students in first through third grade.

If you are looking for ways to support an AAPI-owned business this month, please check out Radical Family Farm’s initiative to provide locally-grown, culturally-relevant produce to Asian American seniors in Oakland and San Francisco.

Essential Questions

  • What does it mean to be fearless?
  • What is segregation?
  • How is history shaped by people who persisted?

Standards

  • CCSS SL.2.1 Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 2 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.
  • CCSS SL.2.2 Recount or describe key ideas or details from a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.
  • CCSS RI.2.1 Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.
  • CCSS RI.2.3 Describe the connection between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text.
  • CCSS RI.2.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 2 topic or subject area.
  • CCSS RL.2.7 Use information gained from the illustrations and words in a print or digital text to demonstrate understanding of its characters, setting, or plot.
  • WIDA ELD-1 English language learners communicate for Social and Instructional purposes within the school setting.
  • WIDA ELD-2 English language learners communicate information, ideas, and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of Language Arts

Vocabulary

  • fearless
  • horizon
  • defects
  • barriers
  • protest

Teach Sheet

Here is your FREE worksheet for The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee.

Comments

Have you used this resource or read this book? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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