The Other Wes Moore - Our Destinies Result From Small Choices
My students need 40 copies of the book, The Other Wes Moore, in order for us to explore how our every decision and action impacts our destiny whether for the good or bad.
"For those of us who live in the most precarious places in this country, our destinies can be determined by a single stumble down the wrong path, or a tentative step down the right one" - Wes Moore. This hits close to home as my students are faced with some of life's most challenging decisions.
I teach in a title 1 school with 100% free and reduced lunch.
The majority of students are Hispanic and for most, Spanish is their first language. Due to barriers in language gaps and various factors of living in poverty, there is a great gap in my students' reading and writing abilities as they often come in below grade level. However, we only perpetuate this if we continue to lower our standards in the materials we expose them to because I know my students can excel when given the appropriate tools. My school has limited resources with only two laptop carts being shared among the entire school. They live in communities where they are exposed to gangs, drugs, violence, and more injustice than any child should witness. However, despite these struggles my students have hearts of compassion and the willingness to learn because they have the hopes and dreams of becoming the future doctors, lawyers, and teachers of this world.
The book, The Other Wes Moore, tells a narrative of two men who grew up in similar impoverished areas. They began life's race at the same starting point, yet one is serving a life sentence in prison while the other is a successful Rhodes Scholar. This book highlights and emphasizes the idea that every choice we make and action we take will have great implications for our future, life habits, and our destinies. This book will allow us to critically examine the choices of the book's characters and compare it to the choices we make. We will have debates and discussions meant to tie the concepts in this book to the injustices of their community and brainstorm ways in which we can be the change. My students will learn that decisions as small as being punctual or successfully completing a task can create habits beneficial to their future. They will examine their academic lives and put meaning behind why they are in school and why this matters to their future and the future of the world.
My students have witnessed cycles of generational poverty and are statistically guaranteed to follow the same path.
However, this does not have to be the case. I am not advocating that all my students become surgeons or CEO's of a top firm, but I am fighting for my students to learn how to evaluate the way they think and why they think this way in order to begin making the small decisions that will open up opportunities they never thought was possible. They deserve this.
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