Friday, April 13, 2012

Mother Daughter Book Club

After reading the Mother-Daughter Book Club series last year, Allie had the idea to start a Mother-Daughter book club with some friends.

Each month the girls in the book club pick a book to read and then we get together to discuss the book.

This month Allie and Piper picked Number the Stars by Lois Lowry.  
We had read this book a few months ago and loved it.  
Our friends loved it as well.  
Number the Stars takes place in Copenhagen during the Holocaust.
We decided to make Danish Butter Cookies.
Our friends made cupcakes with pink fluffy icing because it is something often mentioned in the book.
Food is being rationed in the book and they have not had sugar in months.
The girls in the book dream of these cupcakes.

I always love the discussion at book club.
I think I have thoroughly enjoyed a book and then you get to book club and find a whole new level of enjoyment of the book.
The mothers asked the girls if they thought something good could come of something bad.
We discussed whether or not it was true that sometimes it is easier to do things if you don't know the risk involved (something the character in the book is told).
The girls asked us if we thought it would be a good idea to join the Resistance if we had children.
 One of the members of the book club is of Austrian Jewish descent.
Some of her grandmother's family was killed in the Holocaust.
She was able to wear a Star of David necklace that had belonged to one of them.
The girls were able to see and touch something that had belonged to someone who had perished in the Holocaust. 
 {A moving moment.}
Our friend also recounted tales told to her by a friend of her grandfather's who had gone into hiding with his family and how he foraged at night for food, risking being caught and killed.
He was nine, the age of some of the girls in our book club.
Danish Butter Cookies
 Some of the girls didn't understand why their mothers cried reading the book.
We discussed the risks involved.
The girls had a chance to talk and think about whether or not they would be willing to take those kinds of risks.
 We talked about what parts of the book frightened us.
The girls wanted to know if something like the Holocaust could happen again.
The mothers took a long time to answer that question...
AnneMarie and Ellen craved cupcakes with pink fluffy icing in Number the Stars.

In addition to getting together with friends and enjoying delicious, decadent treats,
I am grateful that my girls are learning to not just read a book and answer questions about it,
but to discuss books,
to learn to think about how this book fits into broader society,
to consider aspects of the book they may not have thought about while reading,
to delve into questions that a book raise whether overtly or indirectly.
I think these are important skills.
cupcakes with pink fluffy icing
 One of my hopes is that through these book clubs,
these discussions with friends,
that my girls will develop relationships not only with their peers,
but with their peers' mothers.
I think it's important that my girls have strong female role models,
other women, beside me, to go to for advice or just to chat.

We are looking very forward to next month's Mother-Daughter Book Club meeting!