Young Adult Lit/Crit

April 25, 2008

Erica’s Seminar on Teen Pregnancy

Filed under: Uncategorized — jexter1 @ 7:42 am

Hey All,

Last night I participated in Erica’s seminar on TEEN PREGNANCY. What an informative, eye-opening and well-done seminar! Erica began with a series of statistics and facts on teens that are sexually active in the middle-high school age range, in addition to the prevalence teen pregnancy in both reality and YA texts. It is appalling, however, that abortion continues to be a moot topic despite the number of girls that are getting pregnant at the teenage level.

Erica provided us with a plethora of YA texts: a text of prose, male and female perspectives, novels written in the form of diary/journal entries, and a graphic novel! I couldn’t help myself, but sift through as many books as possible throughout the presentation (I found one so interesting, ANNIE’S BABY, I borrowed it). Erica’s seminar folder was clear and concise, offering many suggestions and ideas for her top 4 texts, mini-lessons and discussion questions.

Assertive, well-spoken and open for opinions and questions, Erica gave a strong seminar. I’m glad that I got to be a part of it. 🙂




  1. I also enjoyed the seminar on teen pregnancy. As I mentioned in class, it was very eye-opening. Erica presented us with many statistics regarding how many teens are sexually active, and how many get pregnant in NY each year. We live in the state with the 3rd highest teen pregnancy rate in the U.S. and the U.S. has the highest teen pregnancy rate of all western industrialized countries. It was frightening. Clearly, this problem is evident and a reality. As ELA teachers, we have the unique opportunity to educate our students through texts, especially regarding controversial issues. Not to dismiss sexual education in health class, if students even have it, but it doesn’t seem to be doing the job OR perhaps teens aren’t taking it early enough in their academic careers. I remember from an adolescent psychology class that I took that teens are becoming sexually active at younger and younger ages. So, it only makes sense that we would be educating students about these issues at younger and younger ages. We simply can’t be afraid to discuss sex with students.

    I am also surprised that abortion isn’t ever mentioned in teen literature, because Dr. Stearns is right: girls are having abortions in high school. I know a few girls from my high school that had abortions. Since I am interested in continuing to write my own YA lit, perhaps this is a subject that I will tackle.

    Thanks Erica!

    Comment by mandygrl101 — April 25, 2008 @ 8:59 am

  2. I also want to say that I enjoyed Erica’s seminar and found it very informative. The range of books Erica spoke on was great. I was glad to see books that featured young teenagers, slightly older ones, male and female perspectives, as well as girls who kept their babies and ones who put them up for adoption. As we discussed in Erica’s seminar and both Mandy and Jess have mentioned, it’s too bad that there isn’t enought literature dealing with abortion. This is definitely a relavent issue-there needs to be something out there to start a discussion!

    Erica provided us with a nice folder. In her lesson plans, she provided many questions to use with these novels in literature circles. I really liked the questions. They will give students much to really think about and discuss. Like Jess also mentioned, I am really interested in reading some of the books Erica focused on.

    Thanks Erica! The seminar was great!

    Comment by katefrazer — April 28, 2008 @ 9:11 pm

  3. I like that NBC is spreading a good message to teens about not getting pregnant. I will have my brothers and sisters watch this show. I think it starts on June 25th at 9pm!

    Comment by simone — June 21, 2008 @ 1:58 pm

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