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A Movie in My Pillow/Una pelicula en mi…
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A Movie in My Pillow/Una pelicula en mi almohada: Poems/Poemas

by Jorge Argueta

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Summary: This story has poems that are written in English and Spanish. They capture the culture and beauty of the country of El Salvador. The illustrations are also extremely beautiful.

Personal reflection: The pictures were beautiful, and the poems were nicely written.

Class use: Use this book to help students write their own students. It will also help educate students about the Spanish language. ( )
  allisonpollack | Apr 28, 2015 |
This is a bilingual story about how hard moving to a new country can be. A boy leaves with his father to San Francisco. It is difficult for him because he has to leave the rest of his family behind. He misses his friends, pets, and family as he struggles to learn the new language. Not only is it hard to leave your family, but it is also very difficult to learn a second language. This book does a good job of including his struggles and successes. He finally does learn English and is so very proud of himself. This book does an accurate job of showing the child's struggles as he transitions into a new home. ( )
  AllieR93 | Nov 9, 2013 |
Argueta, J. (2001). A movie in my pillow: Una pelicula en mi almohada. San Francisco: Children’s Book Press.

In A Movie in my Pillow: Una Pelicula en mi Almohada, the author tells the story of his childhood through the use of poems. Poet Jorge Argueta escaped El Salvador and its deadly civil war with his family when he was a small child. The family sought refuge in San Francisco. This is the story of his childhood memories of El Salvador and San Francisco. He tells of the many things that are different between his new home and his old home. In addition to the poems, vibrant illustrations depict each poem. Additionally, the story is told using both English and Spanish.

This story is an example of the movement of people from a war-torn country to refuge in a different country. Many people come to America to escape poor living conditions and war. In his poems, Argueta describes the many different races that live in his new neighborhood in San Francisco. These people have all migrated from poor living conditions to better living conditions. This book is an excellent example of why groups of people chose to leave their home in search of a new one.

This can be used in a library for both English and Spanish speaking patrons. It can be used as a tool for learning to speak either language. This would be an excellent book to use with small children who have a Latino heritage or who have recently immigrated here from a different country. Additionally, it can be used in a classroom (English or Reading) as an example of multicultural poetry. ( )
  emgalford | Feb 6, 2010 |
Review: This is a good example of a poetry book. It was originally written in Spanish and then translated to English so the part I can understand does no rhyme, but is still poetry. The text is written in stanzas and each page has a new title and discusses something new, all of them related to his life in El Salvador.

Setting: The setting is an integral part of the story since he is in San Fransisco and has just moved from El Salvador. If we did not know this information the story would not make sense.

Media: Watercolors
  rlee09 | Nov 25, 2009 |
Genre: Poetry

This is a good example of a book of poetry, because on every page, there is a different poem about El Salvador or about the author’s life from there and what may be different about it now. The poems are written both in English and Spanish, and on each page they have an illustration to go along with it. The poems do not always rhyme, in fact there are rare that do at all. The form is the author’s opinion, dreams, and ideas, and there are a lot of repeated themes throughout the book. The Spanish helps too, because it encourages the reader to look into and consider the background of the author.
The media used in this book looks like acrylic paints, because in the back of the book, the illustrator states that she is an internationally exhibited painter. As you look through the book, the colors are bright and exhibit many layers of them. It looks like it took hours to make the illustrations simply because of how detailed each painting is. The paintings go along with each poem to continue the story of the author.
Imagery is a powerful concept of style in the poems throughout the book. There is one particular image of a family being like a nest with all the birds inside, and this is also an example of a simile. On that same page there is an illustration demonstrating that exact concept. Another example of a powerful image is when a poem describes little city trains that “go in and out of the open mouths of mountains”. Mountains do not really have mouths in the literal sense of the word, but as well as being a powerful image, this is also a metaphor because the mountain’s opening can sometimes look like a mouth. Throughout the book, images are powerfully drawn and explained as the author strives to give the reader some sort of imagination and idea about his experiences in El Salvador and what his thinks about the Americas now.
  chelsealouise | Mar 4, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0892391650, Hardcover)

A young boy with two homelands and a delightful sense of wonder comes to life in Jorge Argueta’s first collection of poems for children. Young Jorgito lives in San Francisco’s Mission District, but he hasn’t forgotten his native El Salvador. He recalls the volcanoes, the tasty cornmeal pupusas, and his grandmother’s stories. As he changes from timid newcomer to seasoned city dweller, Jorgito’s memories and new adventures form a patchwork of dreams — the movie in his pillow — that is perfectly suited to his new bicultural identity.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:31 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Poems in Spanish and English describe the author's boyhood as a refugee from rural El Salvador living in San Francisco's Mission District, where he had to cope with a new language, a new culture, and a very different way of life.

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