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To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations, children from 115 countries have written, illustrated, and edited a new book to teach students about the international organization.

The 96-page A World in Our Hands uses the artwork, poetry, and prose of young people between the ages of 7 and 21 to explain the history of the United Nations and the reasons for its formation.

The young writers also address controversial issues, such as the United Nations' role in global conflicts; examine their own role in the global community; and discuss the possibility of a World Youth Service.

Copies are available for $15.95 from Tricycle Press, P.O. Box 7123, Berkeley, Calif. 94707.

Another book published this month commemorates the United Nations through 50 years of pictures.

Visions: 50 Years of the United Nations, 1945-90 is described in the Sept. 4, 1995, issue of Publishers Weekly as a compilation of more than 250 photographs that showcase U.N. achievements, such as its role in ending apartheid in South Africa and its relief efforts in famine-stricken countries. An English-French text accompanies the photographs.

The $50 book, published by New York City-based Hearst Books, will be distributed worldwide.

Two long-time residents of Lake County, Fla., a community whose schools were embroiled in a bitter governance struggle that attracted national attention, offer advice to other school communities in a booklet they have published to counter those they see as religious extremists.

In Saving Our Schools From the Religious Right: The Lake County, Fla., Story, Mary Smith Fletcher, a Lake County teacher for 28 years, and Frances Ann Meador, a county resident for 40 years, describe how citizens unwittingly elected a conservative Christian majority to the county's school board in 1992.

Illustrated with editorial cartoons from the local newspaper, their account details the board's aggressive agenda, which included slashing the school budget and advocating that students be taught the superiority of American culture. (See Education Week, Nov. 16, 1994).

The authors explain how communities can organize grass-roots efforts to educate residents about the "stealth" campaign techniques and hidden agendas of some religious activists.

The $5.30 booklet is available from Saving Our Lake County Schools, P.O. Box 492124, Leesburg, Fla. 34749-2124. Bulk rates are available.

--Megan Drennan

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