There are two teachers of 9th Grade Literature at our school and I am writing on behalf of us both. We are a Title I school south of Atlanta, Georgia where 100 percent of our students receive free breakfast and lunch.
Our students are currently enduring the crucible that is their freshman year of high school.
Not only are they experiencing the typical ups and downs of high school, many deal with very trying circumstances in their homes. Approximately 55% of our students are Caucasian and a little more than 40% are African American.
In Harper Lee's, To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch tells his daughter, Scout, "You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view, until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it." One way to follow this advice is to read literature written from diverse points of view.
We hope to increase our students' understanding and empathy through the study of novels whose main characters are seemingly unlike them at first glance.
Through reading and discussion in literature groups, each student will gain much-needed insight into the lives of others and strengthen his or her own character at the same time. We are excited to offer choices in reading material for our students to increase their buy-in and enthusiasm for learning.
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