Teaching Hope: Stories from the Freedom Writers Teachers

( 7 )

Overview

“There are lives lost in this book, and there are lives saved, too, if salvation means a young man or woman begins to feel deserving of a place on the planet. . . . What could be more soul-satisfying? These are the most influential professionals most of us will ever meet. The effects of their work will last forever.”  –from the foreword by Anna Quindlen

Now depicted in a bestselling book and a feature film, the Freedom Writers ...
See more details below
Paperback (Original)
$11.92
BN.com price
(Save 20%)$14.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (39) from $3.74   
  • New (11) from $8.33   
  • Used (28) from $3.74   
Teaching Hope: Stories from the Freedom Writers Teachers

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$13.99
BN.com price

Overview

“There are lives lost in this book, and there are lives saved, too, if salvation means a young man or woman begins to feel deserving of a place on the planet. . . . What could be more soul-satisfying? These are the most influential professionals most of us will ever meet. The effects of their work will last forever.”  –from the foreword by Anna Quindlen

Now depicted in a bestselling book and a feature film, the Freedom Writers phenomenon came about in 1994 when Erin Gruwell stepped into Room 203 and began her first teaching job out of college. Long Beach, California, was still reeling from the deadly violence that erupted during the Rodney King riots, and the kids in Erin’s classroom reflected the anger, resentment, and hopelessness of their community. Undaunted, Erin fostered an educational philosophy that valued and promoted diversity, tolerance, and communication, and in the process, she transformed her students’ lives, as well as her own. Erin Gruwell and the Freedom Writers went on to establish the Freedom Writers Foundation to replicate the success of Room 203 and provide all students with hope and opportunities to realize their academic potential. Since then, the foundation has trained more than 150 teachers in the United States and Canada. Teaching Hope unites the voices of these Freedom Writer teachers, who share uplifting, devastating, and poignant stories from their classrooms, stories that provide insight into the struggles and triumphs of education in all of its forms.

Mirroring an academic year, these dispatches from the front lines of education take us from the anticipation of the first day to the disillusionment, challenges, and triumphs of the school year. These are the voices of teachers who persevere in the face of intolerance, rigid administration, and countless other challenges, and continue to reach out and teach those who are deemed unteachable. Their stories inspire everyone to make a difference in the world around them.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780767931724
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/18/2009
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 348,904
  • Product dimensions: 5.26 (w) x 8.04 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Erin Gruwell is the Founder and President of the Erin Gruwell Education Project, a non-profit organization that funds scholarships for disadvantaged students and promotes innovative teaching methods.
Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

FOREWORD
ANNA QUINDLEN

Any columnist who makes sweeping generalizations is looking for trouble, but I once did just that in an essay I wrote for Newsweek. “Teaching’s the toughest job there is,” I said flatly, and the mail poured in. Nursing is tough. Assembly line work is tough. Child rearing is tough. There were even a few letters with some of those old canards about the carefree teacher’s life: work hours that end at 3 p.m., summers at the beach.

I imagine that the people who believe that’s how teachers work don’t actually know anyone who does the job–if they did, they would know that classes may end at 3 p.m., but lesson planning and test correcting go on far into the night, while summers are often reserved for second jobs, which pay the bills. But I’m lucky enough to know lots of teachers, and that’s why I stuck by my statement. More important, I’ve taught a class or two from time to time, and the degree of concentration and engagement required–or the degree of hell that broke loose if my concentration and engagement flagged–made me realize that I just wasn’t up to the task. It was too hard.

But if hard was all it was, no one would ever go into the profession, much less the uncommonly intelligent people who, over the years, taught me everything from long division to iambic pentameter. I don’t remember much at this point in my life, but I remember the names of most of the teachers I’ve had during my educational career, and some of them I honor in my heart almost every day because they made me who I am, as a reader, a thinker, and a writer.

So when I first read about Erin Gruwell and the Freedom Writers, it came as no surprise to me to discover that the truth about teaching was that it was sometimes a grueling job with near- miraculous rewards, for students and for teachers alike. In Erin’s first, internationally known book, The Freedom Writers Diary, you saw this mainly through the eyes of her high school students, young men and women living with combative families, absent parents, gang warfare, teenage pregnancies, and drug abuse. Above all, they lived with the understanding that no one expected them to do anything–not just anything great, but anything at all. They’d been given up on by just about everyone before they even showed up in class.

Except for Ms. G, as they called her, who was too inexperienced and naïve to get with the surrender or the cynicism program. Her account of assigning her students to write candidly about their own lives and thereby engaging them in the educational process, of how many of them went on to college and to leadership roles in their communities, is a stand-up-and-cheer story. That’s why it was turned into a movie, and why Erin’s model has now been replicated in many other schools.

That first book contained the stripped-bare writings of those students, but in this one, it’s the teachers’ turn to give the rest of us a window into how difficult their job can be. In a way I never could, they answer the naysayers who question the rigor of their jobs. Here are the real rhythms of a good teacher’s life, not bounded by June and September, or eight and three, but boundless because of the boundless needs of young people today and the dedication of those who work with them. These are teachers who attend parole hearings and face adolescents waving weapons, who teach students they know are high or drunk or screaming inside for someone to notice their pain. “Sitting at the funeral of a high school student for the third time in less than a year” is how one teacher begins an entry. There are knives and fists, and then there is the all-too- familiar gaggle of girls who are guilty of “a drive-by with words,” trafficking in the gossip, innuendo, and nastiness that have been part of high school forever. One teacher recalls a reserved and friendless young woman with great academic potential and a wealthy family, and the evening the maid found her “hanging, as silent as the clothing beside her, in the closet.” Another gets a letter from a former student with a return address in a state prison, with this plea: “I know you’re busy but I would be very grateful if you would write to me.”

Yet despite so many difficulties, these are also teachers who weep when budget cuts mean they lose their jobs, teachers who quit and are horrified at what they’ve done and then “unquit,” as one describes it. Some of them have faced the same problems of racial and ethnic prejudice or family conflict as their students, and see their own triumphs mirrored in those of the young people they teach and, often, mentor. One, hilariously, writes of how she is “undateable” because of the demands of her work: “I’m going to have a doozy of a time finding someone willing to welcome me and my 120 children into his life.”

Teachers had an easier time when I was in school, I suspect. Or maybe back then the kinds of problems and crises that confront today’s students existed but were muffled by silence and ignorance. Certainly I was never in a classroom where a student handed over his knife to the teacher. I never had a classmate who was homeless, or in foster care, or obviously pregnant.

And yet many of the teachers here speak my language: of pen pals, class trips, missed assignments–and, above all, of that adult at the front of the room who gives you a sense of your own possibilities. “Isn’t that the job of every teacher,” one of them writes, “to make every student feel welcome, to make every student feel she or he belongs, and to give every student a voice to be heard!”

And so I stick with my blanket statement: It’s the toughest job there is, and maybe the most satisfying, too. There are lives lost in this book, and there are lives saved, too, if salvation means a young man or woman begins to feel deserving of a place on the planet. “Everyone knows I’m gonna fail,” says one boy, and then he doesn’t. What could be more soul- satisfying? These are the most influential professionals most of us will ever meet. The effects of their work will last forever. Each one here has a story to tell, each different, but if there is one sentiment, one sentence, that appears over and over again, it is this simple declaration: I am a teacher. They say it with dedication and pride, and well they should. On behalf of all students–current, former, and those to come–let me echo that with a sentiment of my own: Thank you for what you do.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 – 8 of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Calling All Teachers, Professors, Students and Parents!! Finally the truth about education!!!!

    Finally a book that speaks to the truth about the obstacles, heartaches and triumphs that teachers face in the classroom everyday. With all the nonsense about testing, NCLB and politics, here is a book that honors teachers and most importantly, the children in their care.
    Colleges should have this as required reading, and the issues this book brings to light should be part of the curriculum. Too often young men and women leave college, enter the classroom and feel like they have been so ill prepared for the reality of teaching. We lose potentially amazing teachers simply because they felt unprepared and overwhelmed.
    Be prepared to laugh and cry throughout this book as you are led on a journey from the first day of school, through a typical roller coaster year, to the triumph of graduation. You will celebrate children who overcame insurmountable objects to achieve success and have a new found respect for the profession of teaching after reading, Teaching Hope.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Teaching Hope

    A wonderful book for all educators at all levels. There are so many heart rendering stories that touch each level of teaching and administering.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 24, 2009

    Hope is in reach

    I'm not a teacher but reading this books makes me want to be one. The stories these teacher go through is amazing. To think that everyday teachers go into a classroom and do so much good for our youth is unbelieveable. I think every teacher, student and parent should read this book to get a better understanding of the education system and how teachers go above and beyond the job title.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2009

    Hope is alive and well and teachers around the country are determined to spread it!

    A fascinating look into the realities of our educational system. Teachers from all 50 states, Canada, U..S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico share their experiences in the classroom. From the big city to remote rural locations the challenges and the successes are much the same. It is a book that you can peruse and find stories that you can connect with or that surprise you. A great read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 20, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 8 of 7 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)