Okay so I couldn’t decide whether to approach this with modern literature or high school memories. Alas I finally choose a novel from my high school days. Why? With the popularity of Star Wars trilogies and paraphernalia, I decided this had to be my book. You see, in the ninth grade I was introduced to a novel called Star Wars, which I thought sounded oddly weird but exciting. SO I read it. When I returned the book to Dean Roddey, a ninth grade lab partner in science, he informed me that book was coming to the movies. I had never read that genre of material before, and suddenly began clamouring for science fiction suspense thrillers to excite me as I read. I read each of the triolgy before they came into theaters. Before that I had only wanted to read trashy romance novels, thought I also enjoyed reading Tess and Wuthering Heights (which were highly unpopular because they were “required” readings in my coming years as a high school English Honors student.) Confession: English was the only high school class I had that was advanced or honors, but it caused me to have to take some of my sciences and maths with the honors track, and I struggled immensely in those classes. While I made A’s in English, I was a solid C student for the sciences and maths, just squeaking by many times. It really caused me tremendous pressure and pain during assessments, and a lot of worries about how report cards would turn out, and I think damaged my self concept as a student and my ability to succeed in school. Upon graduation, I enrolled in a technical school in the attempt to enter a nursing program (with my sister a year older than me), which had a one year wait (for a two year degree program.) I had many classes with students already in the nursing program, and upon getting accepted and then faced with the realization that I would indeed stick a needle in someone else, I decided nursing was NOT for me. But since I enjoyed reading novels so much, perhaps teaching would fill my need to contribute to society. So I finished with all classes that would transfer, took a semester off, and then transferred from the 2 year school (with 2 years of all credits that would transfer thank goodness), and enrolled in Winthrop University to strive towards a teaching degree.
I cannot say it was the book Star Wars that led me into the educational field, but it was Star Wars that made me realize I could gain more enjoyment from just reading than I had before ever understood. It also made me realize that I could enjoy many other genres, and not just the popular genre among my peers in high school. I also garnered new respect among my peers when they saw I was reading Star Wars (before it was a major movie.) When it finally hit the television and media that it was coming to theaters, my friends new I had already read the book–and there were not many among my peers who had done that. Was I popular for it? I wouldn’t go that far. But I suddenly felt “in the know” compared to my peers and classmates who probably knew and had pegged me as a student who didn’t quite fit in the science and math classes they seemed to not stress about at all, while I struggled on a daily basis for my C, and was relieved to open my report card and see that C. Of course I felt widely accepted in my English class, making high marks on all tests.
Yes, that book takes me way back to my high school daze in the late 70s. I graduated from high school in 1981 (so now everyone knows I’m a forty-something year old woman.) But what is so funny about this walk down memory lane is that with so many things going retro for teens today, I’ve been able to interest students in this series and their sequals as they are called, even after the kids have seen movies for the “prequals.” How funny is that? Who knew then I’d eventually be a school teacher-librarian, especially since the only time I graced the school library door was when my teachers took my classes. Oh but I did LOVE going ot the public library as a teenager, but that’s another blogpost for another day.
Okay, I must tag four others (and I’m targeting library-related bloggers!), so here they are:
And ladies, go here to get a more formal set of directions since I did not necessarily follow them to the fullest. Enjoy! Please let me know (either with a pingback, a comment, ane email, or a twitter) that you have complied with my request.