"This, I think, is how people survive: Even when horrible things have been done to us, we can still find gratitude in one another." ~pg. 76
I keep considering posts I've put off the past couple of months as other life factors have gotten in the way, but alas, I'm going to put those posts off a while longer. Today, I'd just like to share about a book I thoroughly enjoyed reading earlier this year. I meant to write about this one a while ago, but I'm glad to have this chance to revisit it. This is the only book I've ever read that encapsulated in genuine ways the feelings that so many experienced at a turning point in our nation's history.
Love is the Higher Law by David Levithan is a stellar novel that hits at the heart of what it felt like during and immediately after the 9/11 attack in 2001. The story is told from the perspective of three narrators, all of whom are in New York at the time of the attacks, whose lives become intertwined as they struggle to understand the world that emerges in the wake of the attacks. It's a story of fear, love, and hope during difficult times.
What I love about this book:
This one is definitely worth a read. For those of us who still remember all too well exactly where we were and what it felt like, it is consoling to read and reflect. For those who are younger and do not fully understand why that moment impacted our nation as it did, it is a glimpse into a realistic portrait of what that day (week, month, year) felt like for those of us who lived through it. It's a testament to those who lost their lives and to the way that it marked our country, but it's also a reflection on the impact that the attack had on our nation and the dark cloud that it cast over the years to come. It's great for young adult readers because it helps them understand a bit better how the world that surrounds them today was shaped by that moment.
"I think that if you were able to somehow measure the weight of human kindness, it would have weighed more on 9/11 than it ever had. On 9/11, all the hatred and murder could not compare with the weight of love, of bravery, of caring. I have to believe that. I honestly believe that. I think we saw the way humanity works on that day, and while some of it was horrifying, so much of it was good." ~pg. 106
Happy New Year! Although I've enjoyed my brief respite from blogging, I'm excited about the upcoming year and upcoming posts!
Recently, I've been getting a flood of emails commenting on posts and requesting materials. Thank you all so much for reading and for taking the time to contact me! Although it sometimes takes me a little while to respond, I do read and respond to each email, so if you don't get a response, please check your junk mail to see if it got filtered (I send them from a gmail address). Feel free to contact me again if you don't hear back from me within a couple of weeks.
One teacher who emailed me recommended The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and mentioned that she plans to teach it with advanced readers this semester. I have heard so many amazing things about that work and had a student do an awesome Prezi book talk on it last spring, but I have yet to read it! It has now been moved to the top of my list (I'm reading Champion, the end of the Legend trilogy by Marie Lu, at the moment and LOVING it). The Book Thief will be one I pick up here in the next couple of months.
What are you planning to teach this year? Please leave comments telling about your latest young adult reads and the ways that you are considering incorporating them into your classes. I'm loving the emails that I am receiving, but comments would be an awesome way to share some of your great ideas!
In other news (I've been working on this segue for a while, and it's still the best I've got...), I am pregnant! Strange thing to say on here, I know. I only mention this here (though I will probably write more extensively about it on my writing page) to say that I'm still (at the beginning of my second trimester) struggling to function like a normal human being (hence the long break between posts). Both because I love collaborating with others and because of my own utter exhaustion, I would LOVE to feature some guest posts in the coming months, so if you have an idea that you'd be willing to share with the teaching community, please email me (through the contact tab at the top of the page) and let me know what you'd like to share! Posts with information about how to teach/ discuss specific young adult works are the ones that get the most readership, but I'm happy to share any innovative teaching ideas that you've tried in the classroom!
Please comment below with YA lit titles that you are loving and/ or teaching this year! I know that my school is considering incorporating more YA lit into our curriculum, and many of you are in the same situation at your respective schools. Thank you for reading and for sharing your ideas.
K. Ashley Dickson-Ellison is a former high school English teacher (who is now an instructional technology teacher) interested in exploring the integration of trending young adult literature into the English classroom experience. Ashley is also a member of the podcast Unabridged; check out the podcast site below.
Please note: All ideas and opinions are my own and do not represent my current or past employers.
© K. Ashley Dickson and Teaching the Apocalypse 2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from this blog’s author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to K. Ashley Dickson and Teaching the Apocalypse with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All thoughts and ideas are the author's and do not represent any employer.