My students need 50 copies of The Things They Carried for a class unit.
I have been teaching high school English for 10 years. Every year it gets harder and harder to get my seniors to read and to think that reading is important to their lives and futures; an especially difficult audience is the males.
Our community is rural; however, we are located just outside of a larger town plus our community has a private college and a large automotive factory.
Because of these factors, our students are diverse in terms of family educational backgrounds. In a class, there could be students from farming families to families that are PhD professors to families that work in the local factory. These differing structures pose a very real issue in the classroom concerning attitudes toward education. My goal has always been to try and find applicable materials for them. However, with time factors and money factors at hand, I have found materials hard to come by.
This summer I re-read The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien. I immediately was reminded of the authentic and accessible nature of his writing. I also realized that this book could be very engaging for seniors, especially the boys. Boys are the hardest group in the classroom to work with educationally. They are resistant to reading and even more resistant to admitting when they want to read something. I felt so encouraged and inspired after reading this book: encouraged and inspired that this book could be a great way to grab my kids at the beginning of the year. The content is gritty; the characters are basically the same age as my students; the writing is complex in theme but not in style; the themes are applicable to now as it pertains to war and the consequences of war on the human spirit. Through this book, my goal is to not only show them that reading can be interesting, but also I hope to engage them in responding through writing practice and looking at current issues of war.
My students need 50 copies of The Things They Carried.
In my decade of teaching, I have witnessed a vast change in students concerning their attitude on learning and being curious about the world. Boys, particularly, are dropping out, choosing to fail and not always becoming the citizens in our community that we want them to be. I would love to give my boys a chance to see that there ARE writers who write something of interest to them and have a voice for the boys (and girls) facing tough choices and circumstances in their futures.
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|The Things They Carried • AKJ Books||$11.06||50||$553.00|
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