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OWP Young Adult Literature Workshop

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Self-Worth and Social Awareness

Encourage students to use mentor texts to explore and celebrate their self-worth, and raise awareness of social issues teenagers face.
Note: This lesson would be best used with all girls, although it could be adapted for a class of both guys and girls.

Implementation:
Begin with a movie clip from Mean Girls, 13 Going on 30 or Never Been Kissed about how the main characters either compromise who they are or realize the importance of not compromising their identity. 
 
Students journal about a time they felt similarly. (text to self connection)
 Break students into groups to read books from the following list. Ideally, this could be a several-day project for students to read the books completely and be able to present the information.
 **This can be adapted in many ways through book talks, projects, etc.

 Play I am Beautiful by Christina Agulaira or similar song for students to reflect on their worth. 
 
Write an I am poem from a realization over the last few days or from the perspective of who they would like to become.

List of Books to use for social issues, especially with girls:
Odd Girl Out by Rachel Simmons
Odd Girl Speaking Out by Rachel Simmons
Girl Wars by Cheryl Dellasega
Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Letting Go of Bobby James or How I found My Self of Steam by Valerie Hobbs
Cut by Patricia McCormick

Rationale:
I believe before a student can fully learn, s/he must feel cared for on a personal level. This lesson is meant to help students explore the issues they may face or issues their peers may face in efforts to help influence the whole student. I also believe in encouraging my students to write from their hearts,
and I believe when you allow students to press into their deepest heart issues, they are able to write more freely.