Use the YES! article, prompt, and sample essays in each writing lesson to bring the real world to your classroom—and to take your students’ writing to a new level.
In 2010, former Los Angeles Superior Court law clerk Luis Escamilla traded the courtroom for the classroom, where he teaches his immigrant and refugee students English, history, and a worldly understanding of identity and justice. This is Luis’ story.
What is one thing you fear about your future? How can you lessen that fear?
Describe how you would feel if you were forcibly banned from going to school tomorrow—and indefinitely. What would you do?
Want a motivator to take your students' writing to a higher level? Here's an opportunity to write for a real audience, and the chance to get published by an award-winning magazine.
Read Deedee's essay, "How Do You Spell: Afriad, Dislexsa, Faer," about how people's biases toward dyslexia can lock her in a cage, but having dyslexia can also be a blessing for seeing things differently.
Read Clair's essay, "A Different Kind of Relapse" about how her struggle with depression has motivated her to accept the love and kindness of those around her.
Read Dion's essay, "Chronic Pain," about sacrificing an active lifestyle—and inheriting an unthinkable future—to manage avascular necrosis, a disease that causes bone to slowly die.
Read Jazmyn's essay, "A Serf in the Midst of Feudalism" about personally confronting racial injustice, and how necessary it is to act collectively for a reformed system.
Read Jonah's essay, "A Future Me," about the challenge in balancing two different parts of himself, and his efforts toward becoming proud of the part he's less comfortable with.
Read Nicole's essay, "The Monster Within" about relationships and career opportunities in her life that have been lost because of her self-sabotaging behaviors, and how self-respect has helped her fight this monster.
We received many outstanding essays for the Spring 2016 Writing Competition. Though not every participant can win the contest, we'd like to share some excerpts that caught our eye.
Julie M. Elman responds to the winners of our Spring 2016 Student Writing Competition.