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 How it came to be this way... 
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Location: Robert B. Glenn High School
I just found a great quote finishing Poisonwood Bible this morning, that wraps up a lot of what we've discussed in class. It comes from Adah (love her!):

"When Albert Schweitzer walked into the jungle, bless his heart, he carried antibacterials and a potent, altogether new conviction that no one should die young. He meant to save every child, thinking Africa would then learn how to have fewer children. But when families have spent a million years making nine in the hope of saving one, they cannot stop making nine. Culture is a slingshot moved by the force of its past. When the strap lets go, what flies forward will not be family planning, it will be the small, hard head of a child."

There are things we cannot change, but with respect for where other people have been and their history, more progress is made...especially in the way of loving other people and appreciating their stories...

I love that Adah & Leah figured that out.

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Lora T. Tiano


Tue Apr 26, 2011 8:11 am
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I totally agree with you Lora; this is a great quote! I am actually using it in my lesson plans for my 11th graders today as we continue reading To Kill a Mockingbird. You also make a good point about appreciating the life experiences of others to understand where they are coming from. I have to admit, after all of our class discussions, I am more mindful of considering where others are coming from.

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Misti Holloway


Tue Apr 26, 2011 8:24 am
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Lora, I also liked this quote and did enjoy reading Adah's perspective in the novel.

I think from the quote you mentioned we do have to remember the different cultures, backgrounds, and experiences that mold each one of us. We can't expect to change these things about people, but at least be mindful of them and hear people's story, as you also mentioned.

I believe we also need to be open to change, ourselves, and let people tell their stories and tell our stories in return. I always tell my students before we have a class disucssion or have a high tension lesson, that you don't have to accept people's opinions or agree with someone, but you do have to at least listen to them and try to understand their point of view. In reference to our class, I think we need to do this in regards to listening to other people's cultures and stories.

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Meghan Wood


Tue Apr 26, 2011 9:46 am
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I also love reading Adah! I have to say though that Leah was probably my favorite to read. I loved how her character changed and how she grew to love her African culture. She was unsteady at first about where she was but she followed her father. After Ruth May died, she followed her own lead which lead her to stay in the Congo. She grew to know, understand, and love where she was and raised her children to appreciate it likewise. Leah also didn't criticize the people of Congo on how they lived. She respected their culture and became one of them (bow-and-arrow hunter). That is something that this book has also helped me ponder, how everyone is different but that doesn't mean one person is right or wrong.

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(Ariana) Nicole Benton Hazelwood


Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:09 pm
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I am with you Nicole and can relate. I feel there is so much more to learn about my own heritage. I want to make sure I share it with my own kids, but remember to share mine as well as other cultures when I am teaching in my class.

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LaRhonda Williams


Tue Apr 26, 2011 7:11 pm
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