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Ms. P. Santiago’s Classroom Edit display name

  • Neal Middle School
  • Durham, NC
  • More than three‑quarters of students from low‑income households

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My students are crazy, in the best way possible, but they don't acknowledge how great and strong they actually are. These kids I'm talking about are ESL/ELA 7th graders who have had very difficult lives. Just like Stargirl, they are all so different and most need of guidance like Leo. They don't understand what is going on in their lives and don't feel motivated to read because they are not "represented" in any novel. During one of my classes, the story of Stargirl came up and they got motivated. All of them want to read the novel and they seem very excited for it. As an English teacher, I feel like this is the opportunity that will be eyeopening for them. The book is great, fun, easy to read and perfect for my 7th graders who are ESL and ELA mixed. Lessons I'm planning on giving with these novels are reading, debates on stereotypes, role playing activities, grammar, I'll bring a ukulele to the classroom (I'm a ukulele player) and an overall teaching that being weird is not a bad thing. We are all weird, and that's okay. I want them to take this novel and realize that your past is what you make of it. The book also teaches about identity, a crucial theme that should be talked about in 7th grade. Endless class and activities can be made with this book, and it all starts with a spark of motivation (one they are showing for this story). So, that's what I have planned with this novel. This is the reason I am here. I am doing everything possible to get these students reading and motivated. Since that class, they have asked me when are they gonna read Stargirl, and one can't let that spark die.

About my class

My students are crazy, in the best way possible, but they don't acknowledge how great and strong they actually are. These kids I'm talking about are ESL/ELA 7th graders who have had very difficult lives. Just like Stargirl, they are all so different and most need of guidance like Leo. They don't understand what is going on in their lives and don't feel motivated to read because they are not "represented" in any novel. During one of my classes, the story of Stargirl came up and they got motivated. All of them want to read the novel and they seem very excited for it. As an English teacher, I feel like this is the opportunity that will be eyeopening for them. The book is great, fun, easy to read and perfect for my 7th graders who are ESL and ELA mixed. Lessons I'm planning on giving with these novels are reading, debates on stereotypes, role playing activities, grammar, I'll bring a ukulele to the classroom (I'm a ukulele player) and an overall teaching that being weird is not a bad thing. We are all weird, and that's okay. I want them to take this novel and realize that your past is what you make of it. The book also teaches about identity, a crucial theme that should be talked about in 7th grade. Endless class and activities can be made with this book, and it all starts with a spark of motivation (one they are showing for this story). So, that's what I have planned with this novel. This is the reason I am here. I am doing everything possible to get these students reading and motivated. Since that class, they have asked me when are they gonna read Stargirl, and one can't let that spark die.

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About my class

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