It’s time!

It’s time to begin rereading American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang. (Click here for a great article on the importance and pleasure of rereading!)

On January 17th, we will talk with Gene Luen Yang, author of American Born Chinese. This event will be the tenth anniversary of USM’s annual conversation with Mr. Yang.

Check out the comment on the pic below — see that name? Caroline Bridges? Caroline was my student my first year at USM, the first year of our annual skype with Mr. Yang.Screen Shot 2017-01-02 at 5.21.46 PM.png

Ten years ago, Gene Luen Yang was a relatively little-known author who was just beginning to garner attention… Now, he is perhaps at the pinnacle of his career! Check out the Yang page. You’ll be blown away.

We’ll start by reading the article I had posted on facebook. Click here. You do not need to Sketchnote this article. Just read it!

Then, we’ll move on to consider “what makes a person.” For homework, please read and sketchnote this rather challenging but definitely interesting BrainPickings article:

What Makes a Person: The Seven Layers of Identity in Literature and Life

“It is the intentions, the capacities for choice rather than the total configuration of traits which defines the person.”

This is a difficult read, but as second semester eighth graders, you are ready to test your skills — which you’ll definitely need in Upper School. Use the Notice and Note signposts to help you read and understand. In your sketchnotes, be sure to also notice and note the allusion to Walt Whitman – Look up what the article refers to! and Word Gaps.


  • Character
  • Figure
  • Person
  • Self
  • Soul and Mind
  • Individual
  • Presence

Here are some notes to help you: