Friday, September 20, 2013

Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

Out of My Mind, Sharon M. Draper.  New York:  Atheneum Books for Young Readers/ Simon & Schuster, 2010.  e-book, 189 pps.

Melody Brooks is a wheelchair user with C.P.  She also has a bit of synesthesia.  Because her limbs are severely involved, she is unable to talk or move much of her own volition.  The disabled kids are all stuck into one classroom.  The teachers have various levels of skills and dedication.

Inclusive classrooms begin to happen-- first with music, then with language arts and history.  Melody gets her own mobility aide who is a college student.  Together they find a way for her to communicate.  The world opens up in a way.  The normie kids and the normie teachers are amazed at Melody's intelligence.

Something happens towards the end that shows that it's easy to be a friend to someone who is different or odd until the troops make fun.  Then suddenly the friend falls by the wayside.  Melody is left with her family and next-door neighbor and an inner strength which shines through.

sapphoq reviews says:  The author has a daughter who also has C.P. and uses a wheelchair.  Out of My Mind is an excellent book.  Highly recommended for grades five through eight.

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