I teach English for special education high school students at a Title I public high school in KS.
My students are primarily low-income, minority students and all have varying degrees of disabilities.
My students have learning disabilities, cognitive disabilities, emotional disabilities, and physical disabilities. However, they are not defined by their disabilities. They are wise, funny, talented, and hardworking. When I look at my students, I see people who love to sing. I see people who have deep thoughts that others often overlook. My students care about justice, their families, the mental health of their friends, their pets, and even politics. They are just like you and me.
The students in my classes all struggle with reading and writing. One of my biggest goals as an educator is to find a way to get them to become engaged readers for the rest of their life. Most of us have had the experience of finding a book we just can't put down. I want my students to have that same experience.
All students deserve to be able to find a book that they love, even struggling readers.
I want my students to have graphic novels because they are less intimidating and more likely to initially engage a struggling reader. Students who struggle with reading are often intimated to even start a book to begin with. Graphic novels are a great way for students to read a complex story without becoming overwhelmed. I have seen the difference that a great graphic novel makes for a struggling reader and I want more of those experiences to happen in my classroom.
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