Friday, November 12, 2010

Book Recommendation

I try not to make this blog too “personal”.  In other words, I believe that people read this blog to learn more about the school and what is happening with the school district.  However, I am going to make an exception today.  I have been reading The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope by William Kamkwamba.  The story is about how a 14 year old boy living in Malawi made a windmill for his village from spare bicycle parts and old pvc pipes.  The story is much more detailed then just the story of the windmill.  The author describes in detail how his family and village survived a famine in 2001.  Reading the story of how the family and village survived the famine lets the reader be inspired by the power of hope, community, and faith (especially faith).  No matter how bad the situation was (and it was bad for political reasons more than environmental reasons) William’s family and friends never stopped believing in each other.  I was also struck by the importance that the family and community placed on education.  Although the schools are not anything that we would recognize in the United States, the students are expected to perform at high levels and the students recognize that education can improve their lives.  This book is a must read.  It is hard to read at times because of the graphic descriptions of suffering during the famine, but in the end you will walk away with the resiliency of the human spirit.

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