Who would’ve thought Alfie would turn out to be such an unpopular character with my students? During this unit, we are studying conflict, so as a class, we are reading the historical fiction novel Stay Where You Are and Then Leave by John Boyne. This is an excellent story about a 9-year-old boy, Alfie, living in WWI-era Britain and his adventures in breaking his father out of a hospital.
We finished the book over the weekend, so we had our final whole class discussion about it. We started out kind of slowly; I didn’t see any big ideas or discussion threads coming out of our initial sharing time, so I was a little nervous about how the discussion would go. At one point, I told the class that we were going to try to answer a particular question “popcorn style,” which means they would be able to share freely as long as no one else was sharing (as opposed to me calling on students individually). My class is pretty mature; I figured we could try it out and see how it goes.
After that, I didn’t have to say a single thing. And let me just say, it was a great discussion (poor Alfie didn’t get a lot of love, though). #proudteacher