Thursday, December 9, 2010

Connecting with Teens Made my Day

I recently spoke to a high school Latin class of juniors (11th graders). I had a blast. But ya know what really made me happy? Not a single kid fell asleep during my talk (hey, it was an early class, okay?
And we're talking teens).

Yesterday, I received a thank you note from the teacher along with a thick packet of letters and cards from the students. I sometimes receive sweet notes from younger
kids, but I had not expected this from the older ones. It completely made my day (thank you Ms. Burke!). I just had to share some of their comments:

I was worried that I wouldn't like [your Cleopatra book] because it's a children's book, but I ended up really loving it! I kept sharing all of the fun facts that I learned with my friends and parents. Who knew one person could be SO interesting?!

By telling us about the life of Cleopatra, you have renewed my interest in the ancient world...[your approach] actually leaves space for the individual to make his/her own conclusion about how and why things took place. Mrs. Shecter, your job might make you the coolest mom ever.
(My kids would disagree, but still.)

I really enjoyed the detail and depth of your story. I specifically appreciated your enthusiasm...I myself am a history buff and enjoy hearing from other people who have the same passion.

The young man who wrote the above added a PS regarding the replica Spartan helmet I brought in:  The helmet was really cool. I cannot believe you own that. I am jealous.

Again, I love my job


Elizabeth O. Dulemba said...

How COOL is that!!?? Awesomeness. :)

Karen Strong said...

How exciting to get a thick packet of letters from older students. Your presentation must have really rocked.

And seriously...I also a little jealous of the Spartan helmet. :)

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

It is cool, isn't it, e?

And Karen, you can come over and try that helmet on any time you would like!

Unknown said...

Well done Vicky!!

Universities are lucky they have you out there to promote history. You can connect with young people much more effectively - if they sent out a dusty old academic to meet a bunch of 17 year olds a snore fest would almost be guaranteed!

The helmet seems to be very popular - though I noticed you left that super dress at home this time ;)


Gabriele Campbell said...

Heh, I can't blame that boy for being jealous about the helmet, though I personally would like to have a Roman one. :)

Anonymous said...

More people need to realize the power of non-fiction books seemingly written for children!

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

Hasan, I could not imagine wearing that dress around teenagers. AWKWARD! Thanks for commenting,

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...


I have a Roman one but it's not as nice as this one. And. it doesn't have the crest, so not as much fun.

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

@campbele, I agree! A lot of people don't realize that reading a good kid's book about any nonfiction subject is usually a great entry point into complicated subjects because we have to get to the heart of things right away...

Gail said...

Letters from teens? And they aren't written in text abbreviation? Boy, you really rate, girl! Love the new cover on the book!!!