I recently discovered the youtube videos of “Thug Notes” where a black man gives a summary and literary analysis of classic literature using current slang popular in the urban population- and to an extent suburbia as well. I am pretty impressed with the content and analysis but am disappointed that there is some swearing and images that may be questioned in a school context. Another issue that some students have brought up- I teach primarily in urban settings- is the idea that people seem to think their students will only pay attention if we find a “rap” to teach a concept or other pointedly black forms of expression. Some of my students felt this was demeaning. I in no way think that is the idea behind these techniques- rather, we, as teachers, are struggling to keep content relevant. So what are your thoughts- do Thug Notes hit the right notes or are they in poor taste?
A few months ago I posted Question of the Week #1 and didn’t get many responses, but I have a question I want to ask so I am trying again.
What YA book that you have read has crossover appeal to the general adult population? We see lists telling us which books written for adults teens will enjoy, but not vice versa. So what are your picks?