“I created my own curriculum twice, including novels like Speak,To Kill a Mockingbird, Children of Blood and Bone, and Their Eyes Were Watching God, in order for students to reflect on topics like social issues, characterization, and new perspectives,” said Ms. English, a 9th-grade English Language Arts teacher at Butler.
One student, Eunique, took World Literature and Composition last year and read books like The Odyssey, Persepolis, Night, and Poet X. Tears came to her eyes as she discussed what she took away from the books she read.
“I loved Persepolis, and Night was interesting but sad… and The Poet X was my favorite because it was like I was her,” Eunique said, “I think these books exist so that people can understand the past, not just in America, but in other countries, too.”
Poet X, written by Elizabeth Acevedo, tells the story of Xiomara, a teenage girl who lives in the Bronx, who is searching for her identity outside of her family’s values. She finds her voice by joining her English teacher’s slam poetry club.