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Book Review: Save me a Seat

“Winning is not always about shining the brightest. Sometimes it’s about sharing the light with someone who has been waiting in the shadows all along.”

Save Me A Seat tells the story of an unlikely friendship between two young boys, Ravi and Joe, who don’t have much in common except that they are both bullied by the most popular boy in school, Dillon.

Middle school can be tough, especially if you’ve recently moved to a new country or your friends have moved away. Ravi is finding it difficult to fit in at school as he moves to New Jersey from India. His teachers and classmates find it difficult to understand him because of his accent. On the other hand, Joe has a learning disorder that many people around him are not sensitized towards. This makes Ravi and Joe an easy target for Dillon who teases the boys by calling them names and sends hurtful notes to put them down.

Save Me A seat hits all the right chords as it tells the story from the perspective of both characters, Ravi and Joe. At first, they don’t take a liking to each other. However, when they realize that they both have a common enemy, they decide to help each other.

Although the main theme of the story is anti-bullying and accepting differences, the story explores how adults can support children overcome difficulties that they experience in their lives.

I really liked how Joe’s relationship with his father improves as the story progresses. Joe does not usually share his feelings with his father. His father always tells him ‘to man up and fight back.’ But eventually, Joe finds a way to express himself and convey his feelings to his father. This prompts Joe’s father to write a letter to Joe sharing his thoughts.

“You said that boy Dillon never lets you forget who you are, but it’s not his job to remind you – it’s mine. You are smart and funny and the best son a father could have.”

I feel this book is interesting as it gets you to think about how every story has more than one side to it. Also, it makes the reader think about how our prejudices and biases affect us and how assumptions about others can often be wrong. Like the blurb on the book says, “A new friend could be sitting right next to you!”


Written by: Chandni Shah. Chandni is a picture book collector, an educator and founder of Simplifly, a learning venture for children.


Poems: A poem by currentkid Riva Raghavan!


StayCurrent with our video of the week! 12 August, 2019

 


Today, August 9, is Book Lovers Day!


Talking Hawking by Aryan Kabra


“There was a young man named Hawking

Who got tired of walking,

He bought a new scooter,

Attached a computer,

And now it does all of his talking”


As most of you may have already guessed I am talking about Stephen Hawking.

Stephen Hawking was born on 8th January 1942 and he passed away 14 March 2018.

At age 17 he entered Oxford University. He went on to do his post-graduate studies at Cambridge University. Since Cambridge did not offer a degree in mathematics he gravitated towards physics and more specifically cosmology. He held the very prestigious post of a mathematics teacher at Cambridge from 1979-2009 which was once held by Isaac Newton.

At age 21 he was diagnosed with a condition called ALS which meant that his body was slowly shutting down. Even with this disability, he threw himself straight back into the investigation of the cosmos.

Stephen’s first major contribution to science was with his ‘theory of singularity’ in collaboration with Roger Penrose. He went on to publish many such scientific theories throughout his lifetime. He also wrote many books, the most famous one being, “A Brief History of Time.”

I chose to talk about Stephen Hawking today because he is an inspiration to me as even though he was confined to a wheelchair he has helped us unlock many secrets about something as vast as space. I too am very intrigued by space and the universe we live in.

Stephen Hawking also had a humorous side he has appeared in a few comedy shows, the most recent being The Big Bang Theory. One of his famous sayings was…

”Life would be tragic if it weren’t funny.”


Written By: Aryan Kabra, Grade 4, Bombay International School


The Other Side: Consumerism

There is a pair of shoes that is wrapped carefully in a box and ready to be bought. I reach inside, pull one out, freshly scented and new, covered with splashes of red, black and white. Another pair to add to my collection, I thought to myself. I untie the laces and slip the shoes on my feet. They are not comfy but they look amazing. These shoes are in season and it will grab attention anywhere I go. I’m certain they will make me look cool. However, as I stand in the mirror, staring down at my feet, I don’t really feel happy wearing the pair. They look great on me but I feel like it won’t make any difference. Another pair to add to my shoe collection, 3 new dresses to give to my cupboard and a set of new wireless earphones. Big shopping bags are at my side and I don’t think they have space for a pair of shoes. 

I go to the mall every weekend and return with bags and boxes of presents for myself. What is the point of buying things that I’ll only wear for a week then stuff away at the back of my closet? When I go to events or places, people will just recognize me as the girl with cool shoes. And if I don’t stop myself from buying them, I will continue this pattern of buying things I don’t really need. 

“Excuse me ma’am, but would you like to buy this pair? It fits very well,” said a salesperson, interrupting my thoughts. it took me a minute to give an answer, carefully thinking about whether I should buy it or not. 

“I think I’m good for now,” I say. “Thanks for helping though”, and I leave the store feeling happy that I didn’t indulge. 

We often get confused between what we want and what we need. And it’s important to know the difference because we can end up using large amounts of money and buying unnecessary things which can affect the future. The other term for this is consumerism, and it is highly common with teenagers today. Some kids buy things so they can look cool and feel satisfied. It’s like our schools and society, making us believe that what we own is better than who we are and our personality. 

Consumerism also has a large impact on problems like climate change because of the excessive need to make items, along with inequality and bullying because there is always constant competition of who has what. There are people who can’t afford the things we buy. Food and clothing that we want, is what millions of other people need to survive. So the best we could do is when you are longing for something, something that you really want and don’t have just ask yourself if you really, really need it.


Written by: Sofya Mehta, a freewheeling 7th-grade student of Woodstock School in Mussoorie. She is an enthusiastic community volunteer and social service participant.


StayCurrent with our video of the week! August 1, 2019

 


The Nothing Poem by Riva Raghavan!


Who do you think will win at the upcoming 2019 MTV Video Music Awards? Take a Poll.

The 2019 MTV Music Awards will be air on August 26 2019. Who do you think will win?