The truth about truman school
The Truth about Truman School by Dori Hillestad ButlerThe Truth about Truman School was a total surprise.
I bought the book at the schools Book Fair for two reasons. It was marked $2.50 (and well within my budget) and the back cover said that it was about teens who decide to tell the truth about life in middle school, not the expurgated lies adults revel in.
Hint: When you get nothing as an answer to what did you do at school today, you have been given the adult-appropriate response. There really are things you dont want to know about your teens life.
Even though I recommended the book to a couple of students, I really didnt have high expectations, based on the selling price.
I was wrong.
Now, I may get a few phone calls or messages of concern about the lesbian references, but, frankly, if you havent talked to your kid about lesbianism or homosexuality or gay feelings by the time your child is in middle school, then you really havent talked to your kid about sex yet. Its time for the talk and this book is a good start.
But this book isnt about lesbianism (or sex) at all. Its about cyberbullying and using a computer responsibly and friendships and popularity and real life in a real middle school.
Its told from multiple viewpoints so its not as girly as the cover makes it out to be even though, from my experience, the majority of cyberbullying occurs to and from the female population.
Some really good discussions could come out of this book and I would highly recommend it to parent-child book clubs. I also recommend that any parent of a middle school student read this. Im definitely going to recommend it to others. I may even buy enough copies for a class set... or at least a small group for discussion.
The Truth About Truman School: Book Report
The Truth about Truman School is a realistic fiction novel addressing the issues of bullying and gossip at school. The prevalence of cyber bullying and use of social networking has taken bullying to a It all begins when Zebby quits the Truman Middle School Bugle in protest over the newspaper advisor's refusal to let her say anything negative about the school. Zebby and her friend Amr then put Award-winning author Dori Hillestad Butler was inspired to write this book because of her sons' fascination with firefighting when they were little and because of her father-in-law, who is a retired fire marshal. Butler began her career writing for magazines and has also been a ghostwriter for the Sweet Valley Twins and the Boxcar Children series. Butler has written numerous books for children and middle-grade readers and has books on the IRA Children's Choice lists in ten different states.
The book is told through the viewpoints of several different students at Truman Middle School such as Zebby and Amr, two students that have grown frustrated with the censorship of their school paper. They decide that the solution is to create their own website, thetruthabouttruman. It's intended as a place where people can speak freely, but eventually some begin to use it as a way to post cruel things about one student, namely Lilly Clarke, a popular student at Truman. Someone anonymously posts pictures of her from years ago, when she was overweight and less attractive than she is now. Amr questions whether or not it is right to leave such a picture up, but Zebby insists that the website's purpose is to allow anyone to post and comment. This decision is slightly influenced by Zebby's dislike of Lilly. The posts about Lilly are met with mixed emotions, particularly from one student by the name of Trevor.
The Hidden Meaning in The Truman Show – Earthling Cinema
When Zebby and Amr create the website thetruthabouttruman. They want it to be about the real Truman Middle School, to say things that the school newspaper would never say, and to give everyone a chance to say what they want to say, too. But given the chance, some people will say anything—anything to hurt someone else. Told from multiple perspectives as a compilation of the points of view of all involved, this is an exercise in ethics and morality, particularly pertinent given the power of the Internet…this is a realistic portrayal of the negative influence of bullying, cliques, and peer pressure as they might affect tweens inside and outside the online world. Butler empowers the young by giving them voices. While at the end some of the teens fail to grasp how their own actions contributed to the problem, others—like Zebby, Amr, and even Lilly—understand all to well and consequently learn and grow from the experience. The story moves at a good pace and the timely subject of cyberbullying will be relevant to readers.
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