As a supplement to my adventures in blog land, I became a book reviewer through Tyndale Blog Network. As a reviewer, Tyndale House Publishers provide me with a complimentary copy of a book, I read it, and then share my thoughts. My first book was Coming Back Stronger: Unleashing the Hidden Power of Diversity. This book is an autobiography of Drew Brees and this is what I thought of it:
Drew Brees' autobiography, Coming Back Stronger, tells the story of an admiral person and professional athlete who overcomes a series of challenges in his life and career. Though I am not a fan of the NFL, this novel was both interesting and inspirational. I find it hard to believe that one could not read it and take back some message, meaning, or connection to his or her own life. The novel really allows for the reader to get into the mindset of a quarterback. I enjoyed hearing about games from a player's perspective. The writing, in my opinion, could have been stronger. Bree's seems to want to open up to the reader, and does for the most part, but at times I would have liked to see more emotion and detail about how the challenges were overcome. The memoir was filled with cliches, but it is very apparent that Brees has not only embraced, but lives by what they represent. Regardless of the mediocre writing, I finished the book satisfied and with a genuine respect for Brees, his teammates, and family.
And what does this have to do with being a teacher? At first I could not tell you, but the more I think about it, the more it has everything to do with being a teacher. It talks about motivation--internal and external motivation. It talks about overcoming challenges and failures--something I expect in my future career and I expect my students to have. It talks about the importance of family and community. The biggest lesson I learned from this book was related to the issue of trust and support. In Coming Back Stronger Brees talks about the feeling he had when being recruited by New Orleans. It was important to him to have a coaching staff and teammates who believed in him--people who were on his side. This support helped him become a better player. In my mind, it is this same trust and support that students need to be successful. Students need teachers and parents who believe that they can achieve. Before we can give them content knowledge, they must be ready to learn. We, as teachers, need to support students in their efforts. Brees intends his autobiography to be more than about football, and as a future teacher who does not know a lot about football, I can say in this aspect he was successful.