South El Monte High Teacher Awarded Writing Grant
South El Monte High School teacher Sara Quezada has received one of six $3,000 Bob Costas Teaching of Writing grants. The grant recognizes teachers who inspire their students to write. Quezada will use the grant to publish a student-created historical journal that requires students to research local community activists.
“The year-long project will require students to research local history, interview community activists, integrate these interviews with corroborating evidence, collaborate with local university historians and edit and publish their work to disseminate in the community,” said Quezada. “I want my students to learn about the power of organizing, and ways in which internecine struggles were set aside to promote a greater good. Students need to know that they too have the power to be agents of positive change in their community, rather than passive victims of society.”
The journal will include a section that provides students the opportunity to reflect on the process of creating the journal, the methodology they used and how the project helped them hone their written and analytical skills.
“Instilling confidence in students’ writing and analytical skills is a pressing need in the community where I teach,” said Quezada. “Many of my students are English learners and the majority of them come from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The project will help arm students with the analytical writing skills necessary to succeed in college.”