YA Literature's Pedagogical Value in Action

Dee Richardson's article "A High School Senior Meets Robert Cormier"

Dee Richardson's article "A High School Senior Meets Robert Cormier"

This three page article written by an Oklahoma English teacher, Dee Richardson, recounts how revelatory Robert Cormier’s novels were to a reluctant writer, Paul Thompson. Richardson uses Thompson’s experience as an exemplary case for the positive effect YA literature has in teens. His growth and interest in The Chocolate War comes through in his reading journal excerpts included in the article. Also reproduced in the article is a letter exchange between Paul Thompson and Robert Cormier. Paul’s reaction to Cormier’s novels and its news coverage demonstrate the critical thinking that stems from working with tough ideas.

Dee Richardson's Letter to Robert Cormier 10 June 1995

Dee Richardson's Letter to Robert Cormier 10 June 1995

Dee Richardson writes to Robert Cormier to share her student's, Paul Thompson’s, final paper and a handwritten letter Paul wrote to Cormier as a testament to how much Cormier’s work has affected Paul. Paul’s letter praises Cormier’s investment in realist fiction and raises questions about narrative continuity between The Chocolate War and Beyond the Chocolate War. Another question asks about an overall message Paul gathered across Cormier’s work on the nature of trust. In his essay, Paul makes a string of comparisons between Cormier, popular television shows, and even Aesop.

Related Links:

Stephen Evans' BBC article violence in fairy tales
http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20130801-too-grimm-for-children?ocid=cap.syn.cnn.we.0.wu

A response to The Huntsman and the past trend to Disneyify fairy taleshttp://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/fairy-tales-disney-didnt-tell-it-this-way-2123553.html

BuzzFeed photo essay calling for readers to share the book that made them love reading
http://www.buzzfeed.com/staceygrant/tell-me-all-the-books#.ia57o3vPx