Libros Sin Fronteras Holds First Book Discussion with Sister School in Mexico

On Wednesday, September 24, the Libros Sin Fronteras book club held a kickoff event in the library. The club is an international book club that trades books with a sister school, Escuela Preparatoria 19, in Guadalajara, Mexico. The schools exchange books to read and later discuss, switching between books in English and Spanish.

Led by librarian Gordon Jack, Libros Sin Fronteras had a Skype conversation with Escuela Preparatoria 19 about the new book that the clubs are reading together. The first book is El Tunel, by Ernest Sabatio, which was selected by Escuela. Once the club completes this book, members from Los Altos will choose a book in English for the club to read together.

“In book clubs, what you do when you talk about books is you’re talking about your beliefs and your ideas and you’re sharing aspects of your culture,” Jack said. “You’re getting to know each other on [an] equal basis rather than there being [a] dynamic where one group is helping another group.”

The club does not have specific meeting dates, but members are encouraged to participate in discussions online every other Wednesday. Questions are asked about the book, and on a site called Flipgrid, the members in both Mexico and California post videos of themselves answering. On December 3, the club will meet for a Skype discussion about El Tunel.

“We get to learn about another culture, we get to learn about life in another country, we get to practice our Spanish in a more social, informal setting,” Jack said. “This gives students an opportunity to practice in a more informal way, outside of the classroom, with people their own age, talking about things they want to talk about, [and] learning something new about each other.”

AP Spanish students have been encouraged to attend the kick-off for extra credit. Jack is currently looking for more members to join Libros Sin Fronteras.