quotes Elisquared likes

"Saying 'I notice you're a nerd' is like saying, 'Hey, I notice that you'd rather be intelligent than be stupid, that you'd rather be thoughtful than be vapid, that you believe that there are things that matter more than the arrest record of Lindsay Lohan. Why is that?' In fact, it seems to me that most contemporary insults are pretty lame. Even 'lame' is kind of lame. Saying 'You're lame' is like saying 'You walk with a limp.' Yeah, whatever, so does 50 Cent, and he's done all right for himself."— John Green


John Green Week: How Looking for Alaska Changed My Classroom!

For today's post I'd like to expound the awesome that is John Green and his book Looking for Alaska!! 


John Green: yes, I’m sure many of you have heard of him, have read his books, and think he’s awesome.  Well I do too.  (In case you are one of the few readers who have yet to read a John Green novel, you can find out more about him here or here).  In fact, John’s first novel, Looking for Alaska, is number two in my Top Favorite Books of All Time list.  Looking for Alaska follows Miles Halter, a.k.a Pudge, as he starts his junior year of high school at Culver Creek Preparatory.  There he meets the mysterious and compelling Alaska Young, and, with her, Miles’ life takes a profound turn.

To understand the importance that John Green played within my internship classroom, and where I really learned the effect of books, I’ve got to set the scene.  In my class, I noticed that many of the boys gravitated to non-fiction books.  I asked them why that was, and repeatedly they responded, “It’s real life.  We can see ourselves and our families in the characters.”  Fair enough.  This put a challenge to me because it is hard enough to motivate boys to read, and while I love non-fiction, I didn’t want them to be cut off from such a huge chunk of reading options.

Luckily John’s books, especially Alaska, were all sitting on my bookshelf waiting for me to gather them and give them away.  John is able to put forth characters that feel real.  This is especially important in contemporary YA.  Students, especially boys, want to be able to relate to a character, as I mentioned above.  My male juniors could immediately pick out the struggle for independence that Pudge goes through and the type of bravado that seems to fuel high school testosterone.  And of course a crush on the one unattainable girl is always relatable.  John explores themes in a safe and familiar way, through the eyes of an adolescent male.  The fact that it is a male writing a male character also creates a novel that boys can dive into (That’s not to say females can’t write in male perspective, but I always feel we miss a piece of that particular puzzle).  The best thing that John Green offers is a familiar boy in a familiar position.  Luckily, the girls in my class really love his books as well; win for everyone!

The introduction of contemporary literature is so important in today's schools, and I think John's books, and Looking for Alaska in particular, are a great way to bridge the gap between readers and books!  So to everyone looking to change a person's view of books, let me suggest any one of this John Green's amazing works.  And in the words of our esteemed writer: "Don't Forget To Be Awesome!"


  1. Thanks for sharing this story! DFTBA!

  2. http://lorxiebookreviews.blogspot.com/2012/05/looking-for-alaska-by-john-green.html i love JOHN GREEN :) have a nice day!


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