I've mentioned that I taught middle school in a private Catholic setting, as well as public school. That experience made me aware that the teaching resources for faith-based classrooms tend to be far fewer than those for public classrooms, so whenever I come across a faith-based exploration of a Common Core standard, I love to share it!
The Faithful Spy is one such book. The premise is simple but extremely nuanced: devout German Lutherans resisted Hitler during WWII by plotting to kill him -- three times. How could they reconcile killing Hitler with their faith, when the first commandment is, "Thou shalt not kill" ?
This is the true story of one such man, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German pastor, and how he came to be an integral part of the plots to kill Hitler. Not only is the text a detailed examination of how he came to this conclusion, but it is an extremely nuanced look at the historical events that led to WWII and Hitler's rise to power.
The presentation is as a graphic novel and the artwork is simply STUNNING. My 16-year-old devoured this book.
In addition, the publisher, Abrams Books, offers an awesome Educator's Guide (you have to sign up with Scribd to download it). There are 13 discussion questions, an interview with the author, John Hendrix, and several extension activities appropriate for middle and high school classrooms.
It aligns well with the following Common Core Social Studies standard for 8th grade:
8.S2.PO2: Analyze the major causes of World War II, including the political ideologies of Fascism and Nazism and resentment toward the Treaty of Versailles.
The author also offers, on his website, a detailed explanation of how he conducted research for this non-fiction book. With numerous photographs, it's an excellent way to demonstrate to students the ELA Common Core standard, differentiating between fiction and non-fiction.
8.RI.3: Analyze how a text makes connections among and distinctions between individuals, ideas or events (e.g. through comparisons, analogies or categories)
8.RI.7: Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of using different mediums (e.g. print or digital text, video, multimedia) to present a particular topic or idea.