Monday, December 7, 2009

Sierra Leone: Text Connections

The focus of today's class was on your ability to connect what's happening in A Long Way Gone to your own life. What do our lives have in common with the experiences that Beah has in his memoir? Well, there is hopefully very little in our lives that directly parallels Beah's, but he does make a lot of references that connect to our American culture. For instance, he often talks about American movies and music. Also, some of you connect with Beah's feelings towards his family and the loss of his family. Some of you even connected Beah's experiences to video games that you've played, which is both interesting and sad if you think about it.

We read through chapter thirteen as a class and then you all read chapter fourteen silently, looking for a text to self connection or a text to world connection (movie, other book, music, video game, issue, etc.). Even our fact of the day was related to this topic, in a way. We talked about the number of refugees who left Sierra Leone during that country's civil war and the countries where all of those displaced persons ended up. The three states with the highest rate of Sierra Leonean immigrants are Maryland, New York, and Virginia. Maine is at the bottom of this list, but has welcomed many Somalian immigrants into its borders. We may not have a whole lot in common with Beah and his fellow Sierra Leonean emigrants, but thousands of them are now American citizens. A that's a pretty cool thing to have in common.

If you were absent, you need to read chapters thirteen and fourteen and find a quotation from chapter fourteen that you can use as a text connection. You can then blog about the quotation and your connection to it.

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