But the cool thing is that this year, my kids' class did a thing for it too. They had to pick a book they'd read from a list of banned books and write a small essay on why it was banned and why it shouldn't be. My 8yo chose Harry Potter and my 10yo chose The Hunger Games.
Conversation from my house last night:
Me: So how did your essays go?
10yo: Well, I was the only one in the class who didn't have to redo mine.
Me: How come people had to redo them?
10yo: Bc at first, they just wrote that books shouldn't be banned because they liked them.
Me: What did you write?
10yo: I said The Hunger Games was banned bc it has kids killing kids in it, but if you actually read it there's a really big anti-violence message in it.
10yo: Yeah, it was a good thing that we read that book together, right, Mom?
8yo: I had to redo mine, but I got it right the second time.
Me: What did you say?
8yo: I said that Harry Potter is banned bc it's against some people's religion, but I said it shouldn't be bc it's not supposed to be a religious book, it's just a fun book that's not real.
Me: Good answer.
10yo: Yeah, and then one of the kids asked our teacher if we had freedom of speech, how come people can ban books?
Me: What did she say?
10yo: She said that sometimes people want to protect their children more than they want to protect free speech.
Me: Yeah, that's right, I guess.
10yo: Yeah, but I think even bad books should be out there for people to read. We shouldn't have to read them, but we should get the choice to read them.
Me: I think that too.
I love my kids. I love these teachers for bringing such thoughtful dialogue into the classroom. And in case you're wondering, this is my favorite banned book: