Robert - Early College Academy
Robert was a quiet student all semester. While he participated in all of our sessions, he never seemed particularly excited, engaged, or very much interested in most of the materials.
By December, students narrowed their ideas after exploring their community and thinking critically about Canton’s assets and challenges. While in a small group, Robert spoke passionately about the issue of violence in the city.
He shared with Zane, our Adventure Curator, that his father recently died by gang related violence and that he doesn’t want other families to go through that experience like he did.
With his small group, they decided on an idea to start a middle school podcast to talk about things in the community that affect them—violence in and out of school being a significant topic they’d like to cover.
Robert’s story follows a theme we’ve seen many times with middle schoolers—they want to be heard and listened to and taken seriously. Storytelling is one way middle schoolers feel empowered.
“I just feel incredibly humbled that Robert trusted me enough to tell me his story and experience,” said Zane. “He wants to stop gang violence—that’s an enormous task. I want to curate an experience for him to be heard and empowered.”