One School, One Question 2016
Each year, a committee of students, teachers, and parents chooses one book for the whole school community to read. In the fall, we take half of a school day to discuss the ideas in the book as a school--with guest speakers, discussion groups, and panels.
This year we've decided to mix things up a little bit. Instead of a single title, we've chosen a single question, a question we think is especially appropriate given that we'll be having the discussion in the middle of a presidential election:
Who has power in America’s democracy?
To join into the discussion, we’re asking each of you to read one (more if you’re so inclined) of the following works between now and the start of school in September:
1) All-American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
A black writer and a white writer take turns telling the story of a fictional police brutality case from different points of view. Who’s right? Who’s wrong? How does the community start to hear each other?
2) Big Girls Don't Cry by Rebecca Traister
In 2008, Hillary Clinton became the first woman in history to win a major party presidential primary, and nearly earned the Democratic nomination. Salon.com writer Rebecca Traister covered the campaign, and wrote this non-fiction book about it, a meditation on a country coming to terms with powerful women.
3) Genius.com annotations of the lyrics to "Hamilton: the Musical"
How does an orphan dropped in the middle of a forgotten spot in the Caribbean grow up to become America’s $10 founding father? Unpack the layers of complexity in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s beautiful hip-hop biography through these remarkably detailed and thought-provoking online explanations of his lyrics.
4) Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
Marcus, a.k.a "w1n5t0n," is only seventeen years old, but he is smart and fast and has no trouble outwitting his high school's intrusive but clumsy surveillance systems. But his whole world changes when he and his friends find themselves caught in the aftermath of a major terrorist attack on San Francisco. In the wrong place at the wrong time, Marcus and his crew are apprehended by the Department of Homeland Security and whisked away to a secret prison where they're mercilessly interrogated for days.
Author interview: 'Little Brother' and What Orwell Got Wrong
5) Ms. Marvel Vol. 1 by G. Willow Wilson (plus two supplementary essays)
Kamala Khan is an average Muslim girl from New Jersey trying to balance her social life and her strict immigrant parents. But when she sees a schoolmate drowning, she turns into Ms. Marvel… Does her new superpower help her fit in? Or just add another hassle to her already complicated life? You can find the two supplementary essays here and here.