Freedom Writers

In January Kelly Czarnecki posted a blog about the story of the Freedom Writers. In that posting Kelly talks about the hope that Erin Gruwell, the high school English teacher that’s the focus of Freedom Writers, gives to the students with whom she works.

The movie is now out on DVD and if you haven’t seen it you should. You should also make sure that every teacher and librarian you know gets to see the movie. (Perhaps it’s an opportunity for a professional development or in-service program at your school or library.) Yes, this is another movie in the genre of To Sir With Love, Stand and Deliver, and many others. But, the themes of this movie may stand out more to teachers and librarians in the early 21st century.

The story of the Freedom Writers demonstrates the important role adults can have play in teen lives. It demonstrates how adults can help teens achieve the assets outlined in the Search Institutes’s 40 Developmental Assets for teens, it demonstrates how all teens (no matter what their background) can achieve if the adults around them truly listen and respect.

See the Freedom Writers today!

About Linda W Braun

Linda W Braun is a YALSA Past President, the YALSA CE Consultant, and a learning consultant/project management coordinator at LEO: Librarians & Educators Online.
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  1. joseph wilk [Member]

    You might also want to check out the soundtrack, which features some pretty cool hip-hop from the likes of Common, Talib Kweli, Digable Planets, and The Pharcyde.

    There’s an interesting cultural analysis of the movie called “Freedom Writers: White Teacher to the Rescue”. I urge everybody to read it after watching the movie, to begin considering a lot of the supplementary issues that are on display but not really explored in the film.

  2. Linda Braun [Member]

    Wouldn’t it be fantastic to have students, teachers, and librarians talk about the issues raised in that cultural analysis. What an interesting discussion that would be. I’d also like to hear what Gruwell’s students have to say about the topic!

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