Friday, January 10, 2014

Week ones discussion questions: Leaving Atlanta

Hello Bookies,

I hope you enjoyed Magic Words as much as I did. It truely left me a little speechless. So, lets dive into the first set of questions.

Week One

1. Although this is a novel about a specific historical moment, much of the novel is about the day-to-day life of a fifth grade class. Were there moments in the story that reminded you of your own childhood? What things were different?

2. Do you think it was odd in the manner of which Tasha dad returned home? In what way? Do you think that he realized what was most important at that point?

3. In this first section, Tasha’s father is very upset that no one has taught the children about the history of civil rights and racial violence. Do you think that it is good to share such information with young children?

4. Who was your Mrs. Mahmud growing up?

5. Which character can you relate to thus far? and explain

Please remember to keep comments respectful!

Til next post,

Natty Luv


  1. 1. Reading this book as like going back in time. I remembered playing jump rope after school, racing, playing red light green light 123, and just everyday challenges of being a kid growing up. One part that resounded with me is when Tasha and Shawn went home after school and took care of her sister for those two hours. I had that bit of freedom. I had to make sure me and my brother got home safely, made our afternoon snacks, and did our homework before my mother came home each day.

    2. Yes, I thought when he returned home it was odd. I felt like if it wasn't for the murders he would have stayed permeated from his family. Overall it was great he returned, but i wish it wasn't because of the child murders.

    3. I think its good to share information with kids so that they can understand whats going on. I do think depending on the age the context should be geared towards the child age. Of course, this is easier said than done. Even with Tasha she is very curious and wanted to know things. Overall, having on going conversations about serious issue with your kids is very important.

    4. My Mrs. Mahmud was Ms. Geraldine! I swear that lady was s tickler for children being in a child's place. Be seen and not heard. You uttered one word in an adult conversation she would give you this evil eye and you know at that point you were in big trouble. Matter of fact she would even go to the point would pop you on the and start speaking in dialect, because she was from St. Croix, and cursed you stink. She didn't care if your parent was there at all!!!

    5. I relate more to Tasha because my father to left also left us. It was upsetting to hear about his departure when i realize he will not be returning. I wish i could say he came back to us, but that is not the case. I didn't go as far as not eating but I did take on his departure in a big way.

  2. 1. Reading this novel reminded me of my childhood. I can remember the cliques that we all had, wanting to be accepted and discovering boys. I didn't grow up during the era of the child murders; so it wasn't as cautious back then for us to walk to the store or go outside by ourselves.

    2. It was odd how Tasha's dad returned home because he is usually in good spirits towards Tasha and her little sister. When Tasha's dad returned home he seemed angry, agitated and distant. Tasha knew something was wrong when he said the Lord's prayer at the table as well. She indicated the he always said the Lord's prayer during something major. Tasha's dad used words and spoke his point of view despite the presence of his children. He was upset and felt that they should hear and know whats going on regarding the child murders and life in general.

    3. Honestly, I think it is good to share with your kids the things that are going on in the world. I also feel that you have to know how to address issues to your kids, because kids have very sensitive hears that may cause them to misunderstand things.

    4. My Mrs Mahmud were most of the adults that I encountered as a child. The adults always felt that you should never be present if grown folks were talking, never interrupt while an adult is talking on the phone, and always be seen but never heard. In the present most kids don't have the same respect like we did back then, that's why I believe the violence rate has become very high in the young community. Some young people these days feel that they have no authority.

    5. I can relate to Tasha as a little girl because I was always curious about life and wanted to know more. In school I used to hang around the kids that were liked but didn't like how they treated others. I can relate to Tasha because at 11 years-old,I was also at that point of trying to find my place in the world and prepare myself for the big transition of becoming a preteen.

  3. 1. This book brought back memories of the awkward transition from being a child to becoming a young girl. Tasha's pride in her coat reminded me of this pair of black and white dress shoes I used to have that I loved as much as Tasha loved her new coat. Most of my clothes were hand-me-downs, but those shoes were new and all mine. They made me feel like I was keeping up with the other girls.

    2. It was odd that Tasha's Dad came home and no one made any comment about the other woman he had been with. It seemed odd that the Mom would just go back to normal even though the Dad did come back to protect them.

    3. Kids should learn about civil rights and all parts of its history, but I don't remember having those conversations in my house. If we did talk about race and civil rights history it was usually because my sisters and I would ask questions about what we were learning at school or saw on TV.

    4. My Ms. Mahmud was my grandmother. I used to get so frustrated because she always was kicking the kids out of the house to go play so the grown-ups could visit. I remember sitting at the kids table during dinner straining to hear what the adults were saying.

    5. I feel like a relate a little bit to a few characters. My experience in 5th grade was probably closest to Tasha and Tayari. I relate to Tasha's desire to fit in, but never really wanted to be in the popular crowd as much as Tasha seems to. I was more like Tayari in that I was well-liked by most people, but not really part of any one clique.

    1. Maria,

      I also remember my first pair of nice F.i.l.a. shoes I received. I worshiped those shoes! I made sure they were kept in mint condition, because I never knew when I would ever receive something as nice as those shoes. Being raised in a single parent household nice things do not come around that often, so when you get something nice you take care of it! Having those shoes made me feel like i was cool enough to hang with the cool kids. So I also relate to Tasha in that aspect!