GRB students learn lesson about adversity


At G. Ray Bodley High School, English class has become more than reading literature and writing papers; it has taught several studies about overcoming adversities.
 
That was the concluding lesson to a recent academic unit in Ami LaDuc’s English 11 Honors class. The students read beautifully written books, such as “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand, “The Color Purple” by Alice Walker, “Of Mice and Men” by John Steinbeck and “Farenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury before all participants were asked to find a story about overcoming adversity much like characters of those books did. LaDuc encouraged students to dig deeply for a message in a book that resonated with them and students then shared that with the class.
 
“Most of them agreed that reading about these people/characters made it seem like we can overcome our own troubles,” LaDuc said. “It also makes our troubles seem not so monumental.”
 
GRB junior Jake Geitner talked about his uncle, Leroy Collins, who suffered from broken bones throughout his body in a car accident as a child and overcame obstacles to be signed by the Washington Redskins and Jacksonville Jaquars. He eventually became co-owner of Syracuse Strong, a local semi-pro football team. Geitner helped arrange a visit where Collins spoke with Geitner’s classmates about overcoming adversity.
 
LaDuc said the lesson continued with a discussion on resiliency and fostering related traits in each student.


GRB junior Jake Geitner, right, brings his English 11 Honors project
to life with a visit from his uncle Leroy Collins, center, who spoke
about overcoming adversity to students taught by English teacher
Amy LaDuc, left.