In Attu Boy, Nick Golodoff was six years old when his peaceful life in a remote Aleutian village was interrupted by the invasion of the Japanese army in 1942.
How does Nick’s story of enemy invasion, occupation, and finally becoming a prisoner of war fit within the larger story of resiliency in Alaska History?
Because Nick tells his story through the eyes of a child, do you think resonate with students? In what way can this story be used in the classroom? Elementary and/or Secondary?
As many have stated already, Nick's story fits the alrger story of resiliency in Alaska History because it can almost reflect Alaska history as a whole. Non-natives (Russians and then Americans) came and took over the land. They then said that the land will be used for their own purposes and natives should stay out of the way. Next, natives were considered second class citizens as a whole to their invaders. Then, after much conflict (ANB/civil rights in Alaska History, World War II in this "short burst), natives were able to regain their land.
I believe that Nick's story can resonate with a young student easily. The language that is used in the book is relatively easy to understand and the way that it is written, I believe it displays a lot of emotion that is forgotten in many historical texts. I believe it gives students a better buy in when they can imagine how the author/character is feeling. I believe that this would be good for both elementary and secondary students.
I would also like to mention the amazing use of pictures in the book. For some of my students, the ability to look at a picture is the difference between understanding fully what they read and only having a basic idea. For our visual learners, this book is a resource that is very useful. Additionally, the photos have great historical value for future years to come, especially as life in Alaska changes even further.