English 341: It’s Like This

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Author: Amreena Khan

Amreena Khan (Inside Out and Back Again)

Amreena Khan (Inside Out and Back Again)

Part A)

For my verse book, I chose Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai. This story is about Ha` a ten year old who attends school, fights with her brothers and watches her papaya tree grow day by day. Her father who was in the Vietnamese navy has been missing. Due to the communists arriving and taking over she has to escape with her family leaving her Vietnam life behind. This is where the journey begins and Ha` escapes her homeland on a boat to a place filled with many hardships and new experiences. I really liked this book it reminds me of immigrants, and mothers who struggle and push their children to succeed and be thankful of things that are provided. I can relate to this book in a way because I moved to Pakistan when I was in 6th grade and leaving my life behind was a struggle, my mother and older sibling were there to help me slowly overcome the differences and adapt to the place. The written form as a poem and the simple telling of such an experience pulls the reader into the survival story which makes it fluent and easy to read. I really enjoyed this form of text and would definitely recommend it. I would use this story as a read aloud in my classroom. This book is great to use to set an example of things we may have to go through even though they are against our will.

Part B)

So much depends



The rising sun

For me to wander


little fingers

in my hand


walking towards

the road of success


Amreena Khan (KABOOM-Comic Fun)

Amreena Khan (KABOOM-Comic Fun)

For my chapter book Flora and Ulysses, I thought it would be a good idea to have my children create their own comic book/page with their favorite superhero. Since this book was all about superpowers which a squirrel possessed and comic reading, I think it is a great activity to tie in having completed the book.  I would ask them to create a little story by using bubbles to put in words and actions. Once completed I would have them all share their creation along with the story that goes with it. I also searched online and found templates to create a comic book or page which I think is pretty convenient to provide the templates to children of a lower grade just to make it a little easier. It would be interesting to see the different types of stories created, children can be creative in many ways.

For this make I created an action page.



Amreena Khan (Do Not Hope, Observe)

Amreena Khan (Do Not Hope, Observe)

Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo is about Flora who is a 10-year-old natural born cynic who lives by the phrase “Do not hope, observe”. Floras parents are divorced.  Her mother writes romance novels so she is always busy and her father visits only on weekends.  Flora greatly believes in superheroes and The Illuminated Adventures of the Amazing Incandesto is her favorite comic book.  This includes other comics at the back of each issue such as Terrible Things Can Happen to You, The Criminal Element and more. Whenever something tragic is occurring she refers to these skills throughout the story. She learns a lot from her comics.

One day she looks out her window and something unusual was happening; her neighbor was running with an out of control vacuum and before you know it she vacuums up a squirrel. Flora runs outside pulls the squirrel out and gives it CPR, the squirrel comes back to life and Flora names it Ulysses which was the name of the vacuum that almost took it. Flora then decides she’s going to keep the squirrel and slowly learns that it has superpowers and believes that it is because she got powered by the vacuum. Flora makes friends who help her protect the squirrel from the evil. She makes decisions to what the comics have taught her. The squirrel bring adventure for Flora and changes her life.

I can relate to this story because it reminds me of my childhood. I would sometimes recall lessons that I have learnt and make decisions accordingly. I think this is the whole point why we learn lessons, but I like the idea of how she gets them from comics. In the real world people think we can’t learn from comics or other related things as Flora’s mother believes she’s wasting her time but it is interesting to see how children take in with different perspectives.

I chose this book because it was animal related and I love animals. I think children will love reading this book or be read too because of the idea of having a pet squirrel with superpowers. I feel children are naturally more interested in books which have animal/pet characters.  Something I liked and different about this novel is the rephrasing, some common ones are “Holy Bagumba “, “Do not hope, observe” etc.  It is a fun read and I couldn’t guess on what’s going to happen next so I wanted to keep reading.

Mystery Mystery (Amreena Khan)

Mystery Mystery (Amreena Khan)

The series book I chose is King and Kayla the Case of the Missing Dog Treat. I like how this book is organized as solving a mystery. I believe children would like this book because of the character King (the dog) and also because of the concept itself of solving a mystery, this creates an excitement for children. I really like how King has his own voice and he tries very hard to make Kayla understand what he is thinking but she never does. The book was fun to read and the mystery is simple enough that children could figure it out with a little help, this is also something that I like because if there was a mystery in which children could not guess right it wouldn’t be as fun. The artwork in the book is simple and directly related to the situation, there is also a lot of expressions on king’s face showing what he thinks, this may also help children take in the dog’s perspective. The characters of the book are King the Dog, Kayla the owner, Jillian who is Kayla’s friend and Thor who is Jillian’s puppy for who the dog treats were made. Overall it is a great book for children and this series has three other books which are all mysteries and I will definitely keep in my collection to share with my children.An activity that I would do with my children is that I will create a mystery game having them think like detectives by observing the difference in the classroom with the time of three days and every day they record their findings.

From the Millers textbook Reading in the Wild, I love how she made reading included in many ways. Such as having friends who are readers, reading online in different ways and simply carrying a book with you wherever you go. I agree with her idea of not having children read continuously. The idea of breaking the time in intervals is great. It can help change a person’s reading habits by keeping the interest in reading instead of being bored of it and thinking of it as a task to complete. Reading continuously may also be too much to take in all the information or follow with the story. I will use the technique in my classroom by having other activities in between so that reading time could be split, it would be interesting to see how their excitement for reading is still obtainable.

Make #1 Can you maze it?- (Amreena Khan)

Make #1 Can you maze it?- (Amreena Khan)

(Original Photo of Make)


(Photo changed to PDF)

For this first make on fairy tales I chose Little Red Riding Hood. My main idea was having the kids do a maze to reach to grandma’s house safely. I wanted to do something that related to the concept of the story and I thought this will work perfectly.  I think that children will enjoy completing this activity along with the book.  It would remind them to “stay away from the wolf”. I had a fun time creating the maze and the characters of little red riding hood. I remember as a child I would always get excited for hands on activities that came along with readings or assignments and I’m sure this would add a little excitement for my children as well.



Amreena Khan: Children’s Guide

Amreena Khan: Children’s Guide

I believe we all have grown up with fairytales and remember their morals throughout our lives. Growing up I have had moments in my life where I had to make decisions which were complicated and somewhere in my thought laid morals of right and wrong doings which would take me into conclusion. These fairytales certainly teach us and help us, I encourage them because they help create imagination in children and most are designed with morals.

In the Austria/Italy version of Little Red Riding Hood (Little Red Hat) they have taken things with darker content as regard to the way the writer has used body parts such as the grandma’s intestines for little red riding hood to open the door, her teeth to eat as rice, jaws as meat and blood as wine. I feel this version gives the reader a more frightening and cautious awareness that things can get really serious to where she is eaten up. In the other version “The Story of Grandmother” she gets saved by the wolf by realizing something isn’t right. In “Little Red Cap” her grandmother helps her. These many version of Little red riding hood are presented in various ways which suggest that there can be different consequences to a situation.

This fairytale teaches children many things such as to be careful when walking alone, to be alert to the persons behavior next to you, don’t talk/listen to strangers, follow your parent’s instructions.  Fairytales not only teach children lessons but also stimulate imagination and creativity. Therefore, I believe this trend should always continue.


Amreena Khan (Mommy In Action)

Amreena Khan (Mommy In Action)

My name is Amreena Khan and I am from Live Oak. I was born in Pakistan and at the age of three my family moved to California. I would visit there every couple of years. I also went back to Pakistan to get married about three years ago. I have a two-year-old and he is a handful who keeps me busy. I am giving my best to be a good wife, mother and make a career. It is a tough ride but I’m not giving up and hoping to succeed with all my effort.

About a semester ago I was very unsure about my major. I took classes related to different majors at Butte College to see what enlightens me and it was last semester when I took child development classes and worked with teachers where I realized how much I love it. It was interesting to see the different techniques teachers used for children and how fast they affected them. I enjoyed my time there and finally understood what I want to do.

Reading is a great part of our daily lives but we don’t actually consider it as much as we do it for example reading instructions, ingredients, text messages, subtitles, sign boards and the list goes on. Most people consider reading as reading a book, a novel or something continuous.  I personally read articles or things which relate to myself from which I can find solutions or meaning related to my life. I would also read a book which is highly recommended from someone. School related reading I don’t enjoy as much but still do my best to understand it for the work. A reader to me means a lot of things such as one who is able to comprehend what they read well and are able to use context to understand words which may be unknown by them. I also think a reader is one who reads fluently understanding without many mistakes or even one who reads a lot. A quote I really liked about the Williams article was “Good readers do not necessarily read fast, do not necessarily understand what they read the first time, usually read important works more than once, write while they read, and often finish reading with more questions then started”. I can relate to this because I find myself doing all these things while reading. Most of the time I re read a sentence or a paragraph to make sure I understood it well, I also look up the words whose meaning I am not aware of. Sometimes I feel I spend a lot of time on reading things in this way but then I realize it is better to understand it properly then just skimming over it and having problems later. I cannot be satisfied by just going through it and not having it well understood. This problem of mine also proves to be beneficial for me.