“I Was Bitten by a Scorpion”: Reading in and out of School in a Refugee's Life


E-mail Lsarroub@UNL.EDU.


This study examined the progress of Hayder, a high school student, in becoming a reader within an English language learner (ELL) reading program. The authors delve into the relationships between this young man's masculinity as a Yezidi Kurdish refugee, the reading instruction he received, his attempts to stay in school, and his successful literacy practices at home and in his workplace.

There is a relatively small body of published literature on youth cultures and literacy in secondary schools, especially as it relates to ELL students who take part in innovative reading programs based on elementary reading research and curricula. Findings indicate that the reading instruction the teachers implement works for students such as Hayder when certain support structures are in place and when teachers are aware of the multiple literacies with which students engage outside of school.