Gabbie read Out Of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper twice this year – she loved it that much! She is going to be doing her Reading Fair project on this book and I decided that I wanted to read it as well. I was impressed! While being totally age-appropriate for an almost 10 year old, it was also an interesting and enjoyable read for me. “Melody is not like most people. She cannot walk or talk, but she has a photographic memory; she can remember every detail of everything she has ever experienced. She is smarter than most of the adults who try to diagnose her and smarter than her classmates in her integrated classroom—the very same classmates who dismiss her as mentally challenged, because she cannot tell them otherwise. But Melody refuses to be defined by cerebral palsy. And she’s determined to let everyone know it…somehow.” For someone like Gabbie who has never met anyone with cerebral palsy, this book is very important and teaches a lot about friendship, tolerance, and disabilities. For myself, having worked in the past with kids with physical disabilities, it made me wonder if any of them were like Melody – stuck in their own minds without a way to communicate. I seem to remember that some of the children had communication boards like Melody’s, which can be very expensive but are so important for kids who have no ability to speak. I think this book should be required reading for kids Gabbie’s age and their parents – it is so important for kids to learn about differences and how to interact with those who may not look the same as us, as well as to realize how lucky we are when we can talk and walk and do everything else we can do when not everyone can.
I have not read the book Wonder yet, but I believe the two books have similar themes. Have you read either one?