Eleven-year-old Isabella’s parents are divorced, so she has to switch lives every week: One week she’s Isabella with her dad, his girlfriend Anastasia, and her son Darren living in a fancy house where they are one of the only black families in the neighborhood. The next week she’s Izzy with her mom and her boyfriend John-Mark in a small, not-so-fancy house that she loves.
Because of this, Isabella has always felt pulled between two worlds. And now that her parents are divorced, it seems their fights are even worse, and they’re always about HER. Isabella feels even more stuck in the middle, split, and divided between them than ever. And she’s beginning to realize that being split between Mom and Dad is more than switching houses, nicknames, and backpacks.
Sharon Draper boldly takes on challenging topics in her new middle grade novel, Blended. Convincingly penned, it is a thoughtful commentary on divorce, family pressure, racism, identity, police violence and socioeconomic class issues.
What is a Literature Circle?
In literature circles, small groups of students gather to discuss a piece of literature in depth. The discussion is guided by students’ responses to what they have read. You may hear talk about events and characters in the book, the author’s craft, or personal experiences related to the story. Literature circles provide a way for students to engage in critical thinking and reflection as they read, discuss, and respond to books. Collaboration is at the heart of this approach. Students reshape and add onto their understanding as they construct meaning with other readers. Finally, literature circles guide students to deeper understanding of what they read through structured discussion and extended written and artistic response.
NOTE: This class must reach the minimum of five students by March 5, 2024 to run. If we do not reach this minimum, parents will be contacted via email.
I believe my rising 7th grader has greatly benefited from taking the summer Powerful Paragraphs class from Eva. There were precise and detailed instructions on brainstorming, constructing varied and expressive sentences, and usage of transitional phrases, all in the context of the different writing structures they studied each week. The weekly reviews of past lessons and the incremental addition of new stylistic techniques were great reinforcement for the concepts being thoughts. It was also useful to have the numerous sample writings provided for reference with each lesson. Through out the class, they kids had a growing list of “banned” words to encourage them to choose more expressive and nuanced alternatives (started with one or two and grew to maybe ~15). Overall, a great class for my child who is still in the early stages of honing his essay writing skills.
My daughter loved learning about “unsung heroes” of the Civil Rights Movement: individuals who deserve recognition, but receive little in the history books. Ms. Eva ties in historical background information extremely well to the book to help understand the bigger picture to further appreciate Claudette Colvin’s courage.
My son just finished ESSAY INTENSIVE, a 10-week course focusing on Critique Writing, Expository Essays, Persuasive Essays, Compare/Contrast Essays and Narrative Essays.
I really appreciate what you have accomplished in the course of 10 weeks!
What a change I saw in my son’s writing.
He would never admit it, but I think that he even likes writing a little now that he understands how to write!
As with our original OTA class, this experience has been incredible!
Forget 5 Stars – it is a 10 out of 10 in my book.
All of Eva’s Literature Classes are amazing.
My daughter MOST RECENTLY loved learning about “unsung heroes” of the Civil Rights Movement: individuals who deserve recognition, but receive little in the history books. Ms. Eva ties in historical background information extremely well to the book to help understand the bigger picture to further appreciate Claudette Colvin’s courage.
She has taken HIDDEN FIGURES, TWICE TOWARDS JUSTICE, AMERICAN GIRLS, WONDER, FISH IN A TREE, TO HOPE AND BACK and REFUGEE with Eva.
Each class was better than the one before!
Do not miss out on Eva’s literature classes!
I signed up my 8th grader for this class because I wanted him to start thinking about his future.
What I didn’t expect is him initiating meaningful discussions about our cost of living inflation, budgeting, work-life balance etc.
My son will be attending a college prep high school this fall and has already told me he won’t “going to be an idiot who blows over $100 a month on lattes at the cafeteria”.
I am so thankful for this class.
It really got my son thinking about the future.