My students are at-risk. This means they are at risk of not graduating. Some of my students are pregnant, teen parents, on probation, from group homes, behind in credits, second language learners, struggling with drug addiction, or simply just have not made a connection with their traditional high school. I work in a Model Continuation Title I high school. The student-to-teacher ratio is 20:1. Our students have the opportunity to make up their credits by attending our local community college, completing additional coursework at our school, enrolling in ROP, and taking additional classes online. Our entire school population receives free lunch.
The majority of our students were placed here involuntarily.
Most of our students do not have computers at home, nor do they have internet access. Our students benefit from smaller class sizes. We check-in and evaluate each student's progress every three weeks. My entire staff loves our student population.
"Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty" is a highly engaging graphic novel that will capture the students' attention as the topic is relevant to what is happening around us. The topic is gang violence. Delivering the story via a graphic novel will not only aid in increasing students' literacy levels, but it will also show students how illustrations can help in conveying an author's message.
Students will also read "Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans".
Don Brown does a great job of presenting facts without a lot of bias. His illustrations tell this true story in the most honest and impactful way. He depicts the isolation, despair, and the desperation of what the people of New Orleans went through. This is a true part of our history that is not in our history books. We must know this story.
This project offers students the opportunity to learn about the fine arts while honing in on their language arts skills. Students will create their own graphic novel pages after reading and analyzing the above mentioned graphic novels. These pages will be extensions of the above novels. They will be told to add an edited scene. These activities will allow students to grow as readers, writers, and artists.
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