Mr. Bowen's 7th grade ELA classes are starting 2018 with a unit on memoir writing. The students gathered advice from an article written by famous memoir writer William Zinsser titled, "How to Write a Memoir." After collecting Zinsser's advice, students dove into independently reading memoirs of their choosing. Reading the likes of Guts by Gary Paulsen, Soul Surfer by Bethany Hamilton, and Boy: Tales of Childhood by Roald Dahl, students began looking for evidence (or a lack thereof) of Zinsser's advice in their independent reading novels.
Currently, they are dissecting "Eleven," a short story written by Sandra Cisneros. In the coming weeks, students will continue reading different memoirs and advice articles. Prior to the conclusion of the unit, students will apply all that they have learned when they write their own memoir. William Zinsser's advice may have been intended to help authors with writing memoirs, but his words can certainly be applied to our lives, too: Be Yourself, Speak Freely, and Tell Your Own Story