Synopses & Reviews
Elaine Moore, a veteran teacher in Eagle River, Alaska, is a firm believer that the classroom is, first and foremost, a communityand that learning is best when shared in a circle of peers. When one of her students, ten-year-old Seamus Farrell, is diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, Elaine, her students, and her innovative methods of teaching are put to their most severe test. Elaine's Circle is the true account of this small-town teacher who led her fourth-grade students through the biggest challenge of their young lives. This book provides a heart-wrenching, intimate look at the utterly remarkable achievements of this dedicated teacher, a supportive community, and a group of children who rallied to make Seamus Farrell's impending death an unforgettable lesson about life.
"While working on a 'book of uplifting (and true) stories about teachers,' Katz (The New Public School Parent) found Elaine Moore, the fourth-grade teacher of Seamus Farrell, a student who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in December 1982. Based on interviews with Seamus's now college-age classmates, his family and neighbors, and Moore's co-workers in Eagle River, Alaska (just outside of Anchorage), Katz recreates the 1982 1983 school year in this account of an innovative and compassionate teacher's answer to the question 'if Seamus was no longer strong enough to come to Ravenwood [School], why not have the class come to him?' In keeping with her belief that 'children can handle the truth, even hard truths; what they can't handle is not knowing,' Moore informs and guides her students as they find a way to keep Seamus a member of their class. In small groups, they form mutually beneficial peer tutor meetings at Seamus's home during lunch hour. Sadly, Seamus died the following September although he outlived the six-week prognosis by almost a year. Katz's book is about handling illness and death, and about teaching; Seamus's spunk, his teacher's perseverance and his parents' dedication are quite moving. Agent, George Greenfield." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
- A simple story, told in eloquent, precise prose about a world that will touch a nerve in every reader--a grammar school classroom, a determined teacher, and a young boy given six weeks to live
- Will have intense appeal to general readers interested in a moving story that illuminates the surprising dimensions of the human spirit
- Author Bob Katz has appeared on Good Morning America, National Public Radio. CNN, and many other TV and radio programs