New Haven Reads will hold a fund-raising event on Sunday, June 27.
Last year, an August 31 post to this blog cited a book by Paul Tough, Whatever It Takes, that features Geoffrey Canada and the Harlem Children’s Zone.
Paul Tough had visited New Haven in May 2009 to benefit All Our Kin. His book illuminates the promise, lessons, costs, and context of Geoffrey Canada’s ambitious social and educational venture.
Among the researchers Tough discusses is Joseph K. Torgesen, whose findings on the value of early intervention with struggling readers merit wider attention. Some information on Torgesen’s work appears here:
Years earlier, Canada himself wrote Fist Stick Knife Gun (1995), about his own youth and how it has shaped his efforts as an educator, nonprofit leader, and policy advocate.
Fist Stick Knife Gun includes the following passages in which Geoffrey Canada emphasizes the importance of reading in his own development, as well as the social pressures that led him — outside of school — to downplay his academic interests:
“I kept my rich school life and my love of books to myself. While others might know I was in the ‘smart’ class, they also knew that I didn’t act like it (p. 34)…. The year was 1964 and I was in the sixth grade at P.S. 99. I had learned my lessons well both in school and on the streets. I found school, though, to be the lesser challenge. I loved reading, and my mother, who read voraciously too, allowed me to have her novels after she finished them. My strong reading background meant an easy time of it in most of my classes. The streets were a different matter. I had fought enough to have gotten a reputation as one of the smart kids you’d better not mess with (p. 70).”
Curtis Hill, founding volunteer executive director of Concepts for Adaptive Learning, is a finalist for an award recognizing those “who go above and beyond for their community.”
He is one of three finalists to represent the New York Yankees in Major League Baseball’s and People Magazine’s “All Stars Among Us” competition, with voting ending June 20:
To vote for Curtis Hill, click on the Yankees, even if you are a Red Sox or Mets fan. You may return to vote more than once.
Concepts for Adaptive Learning aims to use technology “to help prepare today’s children for tomorrow” through free, refurbished computer equipment and training for parents and teachers. For information on this nonprofit organization and its founder Curtis Hill, see:
“Editorial: Digital Divide Closes in New Haven”
“950 Families Close Digital Divide”
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