Teen Challenges - What is America?

Good Morning! Here's the Monday Morning Blog! Tuesday Morning Edition!


Did you touch base with your teen or young adult this past week? We saw my cousin's daughter play in the State Fast Pitch Softball Tourney. It brought back many memories of our kids in travelling baseball. Just attending the game shows you are engaged in what they are doing. It is important to them.


This month's subject is America

My blog subject this month is America. We just celebrated the 4th of July which commemorates America gaining her independence from England by signing the Declaration of Independence in 1776.


When people originally came to America, it was supposed to be a gathering of many people with different backgrounds. A melting pot as it was referred to. We brought a lot of people together, but we chose and continue to choose to not to treat everyone the same way. So what has been happening lately? Protests, riots and deaths over people wanting to be heard and treated fairly.


So, it has to make teens and young adults wonder, what is America?




America vs the United States

Did you know that the United States is just part of America? The Americas, which are collectively called America, are the complete landmass that is made up of North and South America. The United States of America, (U.S.A) is just a country found in North America.


So, what are we currently learning about our country?

Through high profile deaths of people of color, we have been learning a lot more about our country's history and the people in it. For example,


That a lot of things happened in our history that were not shared in history books.

The history books that were used in schools seem to have a very one sided perspective. Either by the way that writers themselves write things (from their own perspective) or to only tell one side of the story.


That many people that live in this country were treated differently and still are being treated that way

Many people were treated unfairly because they were different from most of the other people around them. For example, in our country's history, Black Americans have been treated differently because of their color. And that still seems to be happening, even though we claim to have rules that include everyone.


Their stories have been out there for us to read listen to for years

Lately, I have been reading quite a few books about how people of color have been treated unfairly. Or have had to act a certain way to avoid getting caught because they have learned what they may be treated like. Here are a couple of examples


Death of Innocence - This is memoir based on the life of Emmett Till, told by his mom. He was a Black teenager who killed for supposedly saying something inappropriate to a white woman


This Is My America - This is a novel told from the perspective of a Black teen age girl, who's father is on death row for something he didn't do. And then her brother is at the wrong place at the wrong time and gets caught up in being blamed for something he didn't do..


The stories of the people of color and others who have been treated unfairly have been out there for us to read and hear their side of the story. I have read their stories before now and will continue to read more, not only understand what happened, but to accept and learn from what has happened.


What to believe?

Our country is full of history. Many great things happened to get us to where we are now. there are also a lot of things that happened where some people were treated very poorly. That part of our history is in the spotlight and is becoming more and more public. Sometimes it takes something big to happen for people to look up and see what is happening around them. With the death of George Floyd happening during the heat of the COVID-19 pandemic, it was a time when people were open to listening.


There is lot of information out there for you to learn from and find out answers to your questions. Schools are adding additional courses that focus on the history of all people to their curriculum to help. My advice is to be open to what is being said, ask questions, and really listen to the answers.


There are a number of teens who want to learn more about the history of our country. We as adults need to be open to learning more about it too. It will only help our teens embrace the full history of our country.





The Way Series

Looking for a couple of good teen reads for the summer? Why not check out The Way Series?

  • Book One is The Hard Way and it is a coming of age novel about Paul Jones and how he navigates peer pressure.

  • Book Two is Shawn's Way and it is a coming of age novel where Paul continues to grow up, but learns about bullying from Shawn, who is a target of a bully.


Check out my books tab on my website for more information and to purchase your copies


Have a great week!