October 2, 2018Youth in Action » Maple Heights Book Club

Maple Heights’s young men are positioning themselves for success as they have enjoyed reading Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s “Becoming Kareem:  Growing Up On and Off the Court” this summer.  This is the first book selected for the Maple Heights Young Men’s Book Club.  The group met weekly June 26th through August 14th at the Church of the Lion of Judah in Maple Heights, Bishop Romey Coles, Senior Pastor.

Book Club is a source of intellectual stimuli, expressing voice and social activity.  The group is made up of eighteen (18) scholar athletes comprised primarily of football players as well as one basketball player.  Grades 8 – 12 are represented.  An average of eight (8) to eleven (11) youth participate in the sessions and our exposure opportunities.  The young men designed the way they wanted to approach reading Becoming Kareem.  Chapters and sections were assigned and they read aloud when they met and answered probing questions and engaged in discussion.   Michael Hollins, Maple Heights Students of Promise Linkage Coordinator and Assistant Football Coach for the High School served as facilitator.

The young men’s book club has had two phenomenal exposure opportunities which supported learning, examining new things and building camaraderie.  On July 7th they spent time at the Larchmere Festival attending the Loganberry Book’s Author Alley event.  Youth explored the food, arts, businesses and vendors. They spoke with local authors asking intuitive questions about their profession and were able to select a book of their choice from the book store and/or Author Alley.

The 83rd Annual Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards on September 27th proved to be an amazing experience for our scholar athletes.  The experience of seeing hundreds of diverse people who care about literature was enlightening.  The young men found the award-winning authors impressive, the State Theatre Playhouse Square grand and the food simply scrumptious!