Tuesday, October 2, 2012


For my contemporary novel I read Monster by Walter Dean Myers. It was about a sixteen year old boy, Steve who finds himself on trial for murder and accused of aiding as a lookout in a robbery-homicide of a store clerk in Harlem.

Although the novel was interesting, for me, this was a difficult novel to read considering the size and the short amount of time. the way the story is written makes it a bit hard to follow, and i had to make a ton of notes in order to keep up and make sense of everything. This is discouraging considering it is meant for teens in secondary school and here I am, a university student, struggling to read it.

Realistically I don’t think I would be teaching or assigning this novel to my future students during the school year, however, it think students could learn a lot from the novel (loyalty, peer pressure, self identity, friendship, laws,  and the realistic outcomes/consequences crime have on oneself and those around us) and it would make a great summer read.

What I did enjoy about the novel was the way it was written. Steven writes first person journal entries and some form of a screenplay as he lives through the reality of the trial and the possibility of living the rest of his life behind bars.

I think that this book does a good job of teaching journal entries, something I would definitely like to explore in my class and do believe my future students would enjoy. I think the students could partake in an activity where the students write journal entries through the eyes of Steve and apply it to their own lives. The screenplay can also get the students’ creative writing to a start and I think these two activities would be both fun and academically acceptable.

1 comment:

  1. Mabelyn, I like how you incorporate pictures into your blog post--they helped draw me into the post. Megan and I would like to see you expand your posts beyond summary and personal response. Try to connect each of your stories to the articles and pedagogy books we read for class. For instance, you explain that you will not assign this book in your class. Perhaps you could use Beech's criteria for selecting young adult literature on page 92 to evaluate Monster. Another avenue you could explore is connecting Elbow's discussion of writing to your assignment of journal writing.