“One series of notes, high and delicate, sang of a sweet moonlight kiss gone sour; another line of music rippled with regret over opportunities forever lost.” ― Sharon M. Draper, The Battle of Jericho
Students at Central Freshman Academy in Phenix City, AL are required to read "We Beat The Streets" written by Sharon Draper.
Booklist (April 1, 2005 (Vol. 101, No. 15) Gr. 7-10. "What started out as three boys skipping class turned out to be the most significant experience of our lives," says George Jenkins, who, together with Sampson Davis and Rameck Hunt, made a teenage pact to leave their impoverished New Jersey neighborhood, attend medical school, and become doctors. Author Sharon Draper helped shape chapters, written in the third person, describing each doctor's challenging childhood experiences, including a parent's drug addiction, forays into crime, and succeeding in an environment that made "failing equal to being cool." Following each story, passages written in the doctors' own words offer advice and strategies, and acknowledge the help received along the way. This information is directed straight to young people growing up in similar circumstances, but all readers will be riveted by the profoundly inspirational stories and personal, intimate voices that frankly discuss big mistakes and complicated emotions, including "survivor guilt" for choosing a different path from friends and family.
Spending the day with Sharon Draper was special treat. A big thank you to Gabriella for inviting me to her school to share in this great experience. Thank you to Sharon Draper for being so "real". It was truly an honor to meet such a great author and an even more amazing educator.