Ladies and Gentlemen,
Right now as I write this, my students are taking a weekly vocabulary unit test. They studied twenty words. I pick ten of them and they are to give me the part of speech, definition and a sentence using the word.
I told them I want all the sentences to deal with The Adventures of Tom Sawyer which we are now almost done in book discussion since September.
I want you to know that they are LOVING the book. They are writing the most amazing sentences about the novel's characters and story lines.
I also am playing Emmylou Harris' "When Halley Came to Jackson." They are reading the words to it and must pick out the verbs and verb phrases.
One boy began moving to the music and started to mouth the words, then he broke out into the song. Everyone looked at him in amazement, then turned to me. He looked at me for approval. I said, "You've got a great voice, keep singing."
All of them are SINGING ALONG WITH THE SONG RIGHT NOW!
What is the difference between the 19th and 21st century classroom?
Answer: NOTHING, KIDS ARE THE SAME NOW AS THEN. JUST GIVE THEM TWAIN, ADD WATER, AND STIR!
I cannot believe how much joy this book has brought to my students in the last three months.
They can't wait to read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. These are only 9th Graders!
Thank you all for your time and advice in teaching this utterly fantastic book.
PS Three guys want their girlfriends to be more like Becky...
John Pascal, M.A., M.B.A.
Seton Hall Preparatory School
West Orange, NJ