I teach at St. Bernadette. I love teaching. I am surrounded by young people that inspire and challenge me to become a better person daily. They are world changers. I do not envy them. Being a young person is hard. Growing up and figuring out who you want to become is hard. Choosing kindness, standing up for what is right, living your faith and values takes immense courage. Actively seeking to learn about the world and the people around you is an opportunity to fight ignorance and embrace love. I believe that books are capable of empowering young people to love themselves, each other, and realize their full potential. I have seen books awaken passion and excitement in students from three years old to thirteen years old. "The Outsiders" have challenged them to "stay golden" in the face of stereotypes and socioeconomic disparity. The novel, "Fish in a Tree" has encouraged them to have the courage to embrace their differences and to celebrate the differences of others. "Wonder" challenges their perception of normal and their potential to break down barriers by defending others. "Number the Stars" has opened them up to the reality of the holocaust and simple yet profound bravery in the face of hate. "The Giver" has challenged them to look at the messages that they are being given in society and to stand up for their rights and the rights of others. The author Todd Parr shines light on our uniqueness, joy, and the importance of justice. St. Bernadette is a school that could really use the financial support to increase our library to ensure that all our students have access to these crucial messages.
"Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage." C.S Lewis