THE BOY WHO HARNESSED THE WIND by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer tells the inspiring story of a young African boy who turned junkyard scraps into a working windmill to generate electricity for his family’s impoverished farm in Malawi.
This Young Readers Edition of Kamkwamba’s well-known adult memoir published in 2009 is likely to spark the scientific interests and imagination of middle-grade students. Readers are gradually drawn into William’s life in his small, rural African village. American children will be amazed at the lack of education and technology available to young William. They will also be moved by his determination and initiative.
While most middle-grade readers aren’t likely to pick up this book on their own, this compelling memoir would be a wonderful opportunity for librarians to collaborate with classroom teachers. Consider using this book as an interdisciplinary, whole-grade reading experience connecting language arts, social studies, and science curriculum.
Readers will enjoy watching the author’s 2009 TED talk at http://goo.gl/ADIHtg.
Be sure to explore the Moving Windmills project at http://www.movingwindmills.org/.
Published by Dial Books for Young Readers, Penguin Young Readers Group. ARC provided by publisher.