One Maryland One Book Program Comes to RHS


The One Book One Maryland program strives to get students to read the same book. This year they will read Sherman Alexie’s “The Absolute True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.” –Courtesy of Maryland Humanities Council

The One Book One Maryland program strives to get students to read the same book. This year they will read Sherman Alexie's "The Absolute True Diary of a Part-Time Indian." --Courtesy of Maryland Humanities Council

One Maryland One Book, a program across the state that has students read the same book, has come to RHS with students reading the novel The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie.

One Maryland One Book is a program in its fourth year that is designed to bring people together across the state by having them all read the same book. Those readers are then invited to participate in discussions about the book at libraries, high schools and colleges.

Sherman Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian written in 2007 and has won multiple awards, including the National Book Award in 2007 for Young People’s Literature and the California Young Reader Medal in 2010. The book was also listed as one of the School Library Journal’s best books of 2007.

Media specialist Sherry Weiss helped lead the discussion with students in the library. Weiss said, “Here at Rockville we have a tradition with the One Maryland One Booka��We always pick a team or two; this year (Caitlin) Ulmer and (Mike) Hayes arranged for the girl’s field hockey team to read the book.” All students who participated in the reading were given a free copy of the book.

The book is about a American Indian teenager living on a reservation. The story is one of struggle, as the boy struggles with his physical defects. The young boy ends up leaving the reservation to get a better education and create a better life for himself.

English teacher Mary Fruchter and two of her students have also read the book and participated in the discussion. Fruchter said, “It is a really good book. And I actually think it (works) really well as part of the MCPS curriculum because it gives a unique perspectivea��”

Fruchter believes that is important for kids to read books they want to read on their own and she would like to see more of that happening at RHS. Fruchter compared the story to that of Catcher in the Rye because of the related themes of identity and not being a part of the dominant culture in their society.

“I would have liked to see more students participate and I wonder how we can get more students to participate in that. I think it would be really fun to do more book clubs,” said Fruchter.

Watch this video for more information on author Sherman Alexie.