At first, Brian thinks of being assigned to assist in Mr. Spinetti’s Life Skills class, as a punishment. He doesn’t want to be labeled as the boy who helps in the “retard” class. Having no choice than to go, he reluctantly appears as told.
What he sees in the Life Skills class surprises him. He finds kids with a variety of handicaps doing their best to learn how to cope in the real world.
As a bisexual teen, Brian has had his share of bullying and teasing. An incident with one of the Life Skills girls makes Brian realize what they’ve put up with their entire lives.
With the help of his friends, Brian organizes a special rally, Spread the Word to End the Word. This is to make people aware of how much the word “retard” belittles handicapped people.
Jo Ramsey artfully depicts well rounded characters, presenting Brian and his own struggles with life and identity, with love and understanding. I highly recommend this story for any teen 14+. There is no explicit sexual content, no inappropriate language or violence.
Life Skills is a wonderful story of three teens who recognize there are people in the world with problems worse than their own.
5 Golden Acorns
© 2013 Dellani Oakes