Going Home, Coming Home

Presented by: Shanae Porter, Block B student

Truong, Tran. (2003) Going Home, Coming Home. Printed in Hong Kong.

Information about the book:

Author: Truong Tran
Illustrated: Ann Phong
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Topic/Theme: Home is where your heart is!

About the Author!

Truong Tran was born in Vietnam and came over to America with his family as a small child. All of his life he wanted to major in Biology, but fell in love with the writing style of Walt Whitman and Sylvia Plath. He has received many poetry fellowships, and some of his work has been published in The American Voice and Poetry East. Truong currently lives in San Francisco and continues to write poetry books and the occasionsal children's book.

To read more about this author check out this website! http://www.papertigers.org/interviews/archived_interviews/ttran.html

About the Illustrator!

Ann Phong was also born in Vietnam and escaped out of the country on a boat in 1981. She lived a year in refugee camps in the Philippines and Malaysia and then finally settled in Southern California. She is currently an art professor at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. She has shown some of her art work in galleries and museums in the U.S. and abroad.


1. Themes are consistent with the values, beliefs, customs, traditions, and conflicts of the specific cultural group.
I think this book fits in with this idea because of the way it portrays the Vietnam culture in a realistic way. It describes what the market life is like and even some of the different foods they eat like the fried canaries. I am not familiar with the Vietnam so this book opened my eyes to a lot of things.

2. This book honors and celebrates diversity as well as common bonds in humanity.
In this story, the little girl struggles with visiting another country outside of the United States. After experiencing the culture and growing closer to her family, she began to see that Vietnam could be her home too. I think that many people could relate to this idea and mindset. Almost everyone has been in a situation where they didn't like something but once they gave it a chance, they realized it wasn't so bad!

3.This book is rich in cultural details.
I knew little about what Vietnam was like and just assumed that it was like all of the other Asian countries before I read this book. After reading it, I saw there were many differences and how important family was to them. Also, it surprised me that the little girl Ami met knew how to speak English. I learned a lot of neat things from reading this book!

Going Home, Coming Home Lesson Idea

Grade level Kindergarten

CCSS RL.3.14

The students will identify a time in their life where they can relate to Ami Chi, who has excepted another places as her home.

Lesson Procedure
  • The lesson will begin by the teacher sitting the mood for the story and asking the students if they have ever had to travel somewhere far away. After asking a couple of different students to share these experiences, tell them to take some time to visual what it felt like and things they saw that were different from home. Then the teacher will give a brief overview of the book and then show the students on a globe how she had to travel from California to Vietnam.
  • Next, the story will be read aloud to the class. As it is being read, the teacher will pause at certain parts of the story that has magnifies the different types of culture. Ask the kindergarteners if they can identify them. I will Take time to explain these differences so they can understand and see if what they thought was close to what it actually was.
  • Certain questions will be asked such as, "Why can't Ami's grandma communicate with her?" and "How are the markets different from the way we buy food in Manhattan?" For some of the questions I will have them turn and talk to their shoulder partner to get some ideas going before we turn it into a whole group activity. This way they can gain some confidence in their answers before they have to share out with the whole group. I will also ask, "Have you ever made a friend when you went somewhere that you never thought you would?"
  • Once we are finished reading the story, I will explain what we are doing for the assessment portion of the story. I will tell them that they are going to draw a picture of a time where they had to travel away from home. I will have some criteria for the picture like it has to show them trying something new or with family that they don't really know. As an extra challenge, I will encourage the students to write a sentence about what they are doing in the picture and describe it as best as they can. Once every student is finished with their picture, they can share it with the class. Once the sharing is done, I will hang them up in the hall so people can view them as they walk by the classroom.


Going Home, Coming Home by Sporter7