The Newcomers: Finding Refuge, Friendship, and Hope in an American Classroom by Helen Thorpe

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Read The Newcomers: Finding Refuge, Friendship, and Hope in an American Classroom Online Free - From an award-winning, “meticulously observant” (The New Yorker) writer comes a powerful and moving account of how refugee teenagers at a Denver public high school learn English and become Americans.

The Newcomers follows the lives of twenty-two immigrant teenagers throughout the course of the 2015-2016 school year as they land at South High School in Denver, Colorado, in an English Language Acquisition class created specifically for them. Speaking no English, unfamiliar with American culture, their stories are poignant and remarkable as they face the enormous challenge of adapting. These newcomers, from fourteen to nineteen years old, come from nations convulsed by drought or famine or war. Many come directly from refugee camps, after experiencing dire forms of cataclysm. Some arrive alone, having left or lost every other member of their original family.

At the center of The Newcomers is Mr. Williams, the dedicated and endlessly resourceful teacher of South’s very beginner English Language Acquisition class. If Mr. Williams does his job right, the newcomers will leave his class at the end of the school year with basic English skills and new confidence, their foundation for becoming Americans and finding a place in their new home.

With the US at a political crossroads around questions of immigration, multiculturalism, and America’s role on the global stage, Helen Thorpe presents a fresh and nuanced perspective. The Newcomers is a transformative take on these timely, important issues.

Title : The Newcomers: Finding Refuge, Friendship, and Hope in an American Classroom
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1501159097
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 416 pages


Tucker rated it ★★★★☆

November 24, 2017

In “The Newcomers,” Helen Thorpe continues the remarkable and compassionate in-depth reporting present in her two previous books, “Just Like Us” and “Soldier Girls.” “The Newcomers” follows a group of teenage refugees at a Denver high school as they learn English, adapt to American culture, and b...

Kristy rated it ★★★★★

January 20, 2018

On my daily commute I pass a beautiful, old high school. This is Denver South. Denver South High School is the magnet school for teenagers in the Denver Public School System who have limited or no English skills. This book takes place from August 2015 through the fall semester of 2016, and follow...

David rated it ★★★★★

December 25, 2017

As a teacher of English as a Foreign Language, both in the US and elsewhere, I found this excellent book hit close to home and was also a complete pleasure to read. There was a lot of nodding my head in recognition at the types of students in Mr. Williams’ Newcomers English and the bureaucratic a...

Amber rated it ★★★★★

November 13, 2017

Summary: In Denver Colorado there is a special group of classes, ELA classes, given to the kids of new refugees.   Teens from all over the world, newly resettled into America from across the globe, come together to learn English, and get caught up in school- some of which have been out for some ti...

Karen rated it ★★★★★

February 13, 2018

The writing was Incredible. The stories of the young refugees were amazing. I serve on a scholarship committee of the Denver Foundation and I was pleasantly surprised to recognize some of the people profiled in the story were also recipients of scholarships I approved. The determination and tenac...

Kathryn rated it ★★★★★

January 04, 2018

This is one of the best books I've read in a long time. I chose it for the Goodreads Read Harder 2017 challenge (book with an immigration theme) because it was A. available as audiobook, and B. about a classroom. I'm so glad I read it. As the author - journalist writes about the academic struggle...

Jen rated it ★★★★★

December 07, 2017

I’m literally gasp-crying as quiet as I can on this Metro North train as this beautiful book comes to a close. That surprised me. I've had the book for a few weeks now, reading a chapter here and there as I could, finding myself thinking about the people I was meeting within its pages. Like Thorp...

Kate rated it ★★★★★

December 07, 2017

This fascinating book puts you in the classroom of recently arrived teenage refugees at South High School in Denver and shows how that classroom is a microcosm for understanding conflicts around the world. Honestly, it's touching how kids are just kids, no matter what language they speak or traum...

Barb rated it ★★★★★

February 09, 2018

During my 60+ years of reading, certain books have opened my heart and mind to an expanded and more knowledgeable view of the world...they literally changed my life. These nonfiction books include "A Fort of Nine Towers" by Qais Akbar Omar, "Among Schoolchildren" by Tracy Kidder, "Rachel and Her...

Nann rated it ★★★★★

January 16, 2018

Note: Library Journal sent me the audio edition to review. (And I'm so glad!) There are millions of refugees in the world today, displaced by conflict and famine. Many seek a new life in the United States. For the school year 2015-16 journalist Helen Thorpe volunteered in the newcomers’ classroom...

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