Students learn with help of wildcards

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Wildcards don’t always come in a deck.

Sometimes, they wiggle and squirm and ask a dozen questions without taking a breath.

The students in Dr. Patricia Waters’ Young Adult Literature class at Troy University were a little out of their element Wednesday afternoon at the African American Read-In at the Troy Public Library. Their audience was made up of little “wildcards” who had a lot to say and more to ask.

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“This is a good learning experience for my students,” Waters said with a smile. “They plan to be English Language Arts teachers – secondary teachers. They are accustomed to teenager students who are more sedate and not so motivated as these young children.

“The Read-In will help my Young Adult Literature students realize that talking about a book in class is one thing but to talk about it face-to-face with children is another. Wildcards they can be.”

The university students were the readers for the annual read-in held in February, which is Black History Month. The read-in was held in conjunction with the 24th National African American Read-In that is held annually as a celebration of the literary arts and promotion of literacy within the community.

“The students selected a book, a poem or a passage that they wanted to read that will introduce the children to African Americans who have made significant contributions to their communities or to the nation,” Waters said. “The Read-In also introduces the children to published African American authors and poets.”

The Read-In has been endorsed by the International Reading Association. More than a million readers have participated. The goal of the African American Read-In is to make the celebration of African American literacy a traditional part of Black History Month activities.