Jacob Have I Loved
Paterson, K. (1980). Jacob have I Loved. New York:Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited
It all begins at birth of two twin sisters. Immediately after the rivalry began. Louise also known as “Wheeze”was the first born however the spotlight was stolen in her mind when her sister Caroline was born. As they grew up and had piano lessons again Caroline showed some talent but soon she showed a “gift” of her voice. Louise took on the role of a “son” at age 6 to help her father gather crab on the island of Rass in Chesapeake Bay even though she wasn’t allowed to be aboard the crab boat. Over the years Louise’s feelings of not having not only her own value or identity only intensified. World War II is going on during this story as well as The Great Depression and Franklin D. Roosevelt was president. Louise throughout this book is on her own path to seek out affirmation and her place outside of the shadow of her sister.
Quantitative Reading Level:
Suggested Age Range: 13 – 17
Qualitative Reading Analysis:
Straight forward format for a novel no chapter titles and twenty chapters.
The time period of Pearl Harbor, small island living, The Great Depression, events that occurred during the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Methodist and Catholicism religions.
Author Katherine Paterson has captured the feelings of the sibling who has felt out of place, unwanted and unimportant since birth. Louise is berated and referenced from the bible by her grandmother (who is most likely declining mentally) “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated” only adds to her feeling as the lesser sibling.
This title matches the quantitative level suggested reading level as younger readers may not get the subtle reference of the attraction Louise has for the Captain.
Pearl Harbor, The Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Content Area Standard:
English Language Arts Standards » Reading: Literature
Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze in detail its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.
Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme.
A classic award winning novel to display the perception of sibling rivalry between twin sisters can be used in a Language Arts/ English Classroom. Along with activities that include the time period of World War II and The Great Depression as well as the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Links to supporting digital content:
Sibling Rivalry- http://www.beaconlearningcenter.com/unitplan/unitplan.asp?ID=3001
Saddleback Educational Publishing-Focus on Learning- http://www.sdlback.com/content/sa1117e.pdf
Sibling rivalry (twins), Identity, Self-discovery, Self-worth.
Newbery Medal (1981)
School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
Booklist Editors’ Choice
Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children’s Book Award Nominee (1982)
National Book Award Finalist for Children’s Books, Fiction (Hardcover) (1981) & (Paperback) (1982)