NY Times Article on Dystopian Themes

When I saw the name of this The New York Times “Room for Debate”, “The Dark Side of Young Adult Fiction” in my Google Reader I was instantly intrigued.  The New York Times has an online segment devoted to teaching and learning and that is where I found this article, “Dark Materials: Reflecting on Dystopian Themes in Young Adult Literature.” Take a look- what are your thoughts?  Have you explored these themes in your classroom?  If not maybe some of the lesson ideas will allow you to do so.  I’m definitely bookmarking this page for future reference.

Dystopian YA Novels for Teens:

The Giver- Lois Lowry
The Hunger Games (trilogy)- Suzanne Collins
Ugles (series)- Scott Westerfeld

Dystopian Novels:

1984- George Orwell
A Brave New World- Huxley

A Year in Review: 2009-2010

So today is the day!  I have been blogging here on YA Lit- The Good, The Bad, The Ugly for TWO years now!  Time has really flown.

Let’s take a look back and see what I’ve done this past year…

I started off my second year slowly and didn’t post a review until January!

January

Sold- Patricia McCormick

February

Twilight- Stephenie Meyer

March NO REVIEWS!

April

New Moon- Stephenie Meyer

May

Eclipse- Stephenie Meyer

June

Push- Sapphire

how i live now- Meg Rosoff

July

Speak- Laurie Halse Anderson

August

Postcards From No Man’s Land- Aidan Chambers

September

Number the Stars- Lois Lowry

Love That Dog- Sharon Creech

October- NO REVIEWS!
Well, I’m ashamed.  10 reviews for the year.  Last year in my “year in review” post I reported that I had reviewed 45 books and hoped to do more this year.  BLOGGER FAIL.  Though I will say that one of the ways I read so much that first year was by substitute teaching and having many many days off.  It’s still no excuse and I plan on picking up the pace.  But before I leave you I do want to pat myself on my back because there are some things that I’ve accomplished that I’m pretty proud of!

I have:

55 reviews, 132 Posts, 179 Comments, and 10, 447 hits!

In just two years.

I have no idea if this is really good or bad or anything, but I feel happy with this.  People are coming across my site and hopefully finding it useful.  I have gotten a lot of insightful comments throughout this journey and hope that you all continue to provide your thoughts.  I see this blog evolving more as time goes on and becoming even more education and classroom based.  I hope you stay along for the ride!

Number the Stars- Lois Lowry

This book is a bit of a change for me as it is a bit more middle grades than young adult.  That being said, I’d heard good things so I decided to pick it up and read it.  The story, as most of you probably know, is about a young girl during WWII that lives in Holland and how her family is affected by the Nazi occupation.

It was interesting to read this book so soon after I read Postcards From No Man’s Land (I read both a couple of months ago).  Both provided insight into the war in Holland, but both were extremely different.  Overall I honestly wasn’t that big of a fan of Number the Stars, perhaps if I were more into books for upper elementary school students I would have felt differently.  It appears to be historically accurate, but I felt the plot and the characters lacked development.  I wanted to know more.

The book is definitely school appropriate and could be used for grades 4-7 though I’d say 5/6 is ideal.  This would be a good book to pair with a history lesson on WWII.

Awards:

WINNER 1991 – Arkansas Charlie May Simon Master List
WINNER 1989
– Sydney Taylor Book Award, Association of Jewish Libraries
WINNER 1991 – Kansas William White Master List
WINNER 1991 – Kentucky Bluegrass Master List
WINNER 1990 – Maine Student Book Award
FINALIST 1993 – Massachusetts Children’s Book Award
WINNER – Newbery Medal Winner
WINNER – ALA Notable Children’s Book
WINNER – School Library Journal Best Book of the Year