Our Voices, Our Stories, Our Visions
Our Stories, Our Voices, Our Visions is an anthology of writing from a group of selected students at Hall High School. The narratives focus on students’ past, present, and hopes for the future. Many of these stories bear witness to the difficulties and hardship some of these students have faced to come the United States in search of a better life. These are the invisible stories made visible. Then too, what is on display, is the joy of the written word expressing the humanity that resides in each of these students. These young people provide a glimpse of a new generation that is ready to change the world. Their multidimensional and vibrant vision boards highlight diverse personal and career aspirations.
What the team thought about the project
The reason I agreed to be an editor for Our Stories Our Voices Our Visions is because I adamantly believe those often relegated outside the confines of literature should to be able to tell their stories, to share the human condition as they see it so that we as a society can better understand cultural experiences. Young people should be provided a platform to showcase their love of language in a nurturing way that will give them the confidence to succeed in life. – Dr. Randall Horton, author, poet and associate professor of English, University of New Haven
We learned how to add color to our stories and how these colors that a story contain can change people’s minds or, even better, give motivation to those who need it. But overall, we learned that if we don’t write our own stories someone else will. – Students Frandy Beltran, Dairy Aleman and Alabbas Alhalemi
For me, helping this particular demographic of student means more than simply helping Hall to increase its literacy scores; it means helping the city of Little Rock as a whole. When students are able to read and write well, they can do ANYTHING. When we begin to produce students who have the capacity to realize their dreams, our city will benefit in myriad ways, and I am excited about the possibilities! – From the Introduction, Edith J. Callaway-Frazier, M.Ed., M.S., Library Media Specialist, Hall High School
The stories began to pour out of my students’ hearts.Many students wrote about the life they knew in their home country. Childhood memories emerged as well as stories of teenagers testing boundaries. The stories of childhood and teen years are universal. – From the Foreword, Sarah Dixon, ESOL Instructor, Hall High School
While some students did struggle to complete these pieces, they all worked hard to create something amazing. I am so proud of my students! – From the Foreword, Marilyn Johnson, Resource English Instructor, Hall High School
The purpose of Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site is to preserve, protect, and interpret for the benefit, education, and inspiration of present and future generations. The site serves as a common ground to provoke shared dialogue for public awareness of our nation’s transformative struggle towards equality. – From the Afterwords, Robin White, Superintendent, Little Rock Central High National Historic Site
We exchanged stories without interference from societal unauthentic and superficial norms. We smiled and laughed a lot in the process. – Patrick M. Oliver, Project Leader
This publication was completed thanks to the support of the Little Rock Central High National Historic Site and Say It Loud! Readers and Writers.