Thursday, December 10, 2009

Popularity vs. individuality

In Language Arts, we are currently reading a novel entitled Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli. The book is named after one of the central characters, a sophomore who approaches life from a completely different angle than anyone else. Her heart is pure, she's accepting of all others, and celebrates life with true enthusiasm.

This is a great book to read as a whole class for many reasons, but primarily because it forces the students to look at their own lives, relationships, and school environment. How tolerant are we? Do I/we think of others first? What do I/we value in a person? A friend?

Lately, we've had some interesting discussions about popularity and individuality. Can they co-exist? Are the independent of each other? Do people try to be individualistic for popularity's sake? We have yet to come to a consensus, but that's probably the way it should be. What's interesting is some of the same students who felt as though these two qualities could co-exist are the same students who promptly and cheerfully offered plenty of ideas for thorough Stargirl "makeover" to fit into our school nicely. It will be interesting to see hear reaction and thoughts as we continue on with the book...

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