Dino Riese
Professor: Susan Silverman Summer
2006 EDLA-615-FTU1 L.A. & Tech.

Extension Project
Mid Term Assignment

Personal collage and reflection

The Skin I’m In

A novel by: Sharon G. Flake


Maleeka Madison has begun to discover what her face says to the world.  Although she is a bright and intelligent young child, she allows individuals like Charlse and the twins to take advantage of her good nature.  I feel Miss Saunders will help Maleeka appreciate the fact that she dose not have to be perfect to accept her face and making mistakes is a life long learning experience. 

            Miss Saunders is a teacher who truly cares about students and their well being.  She is not perfect and needs her support system like any other.  This is why she consulted her friend Tai in the auditorium.  Miss Saunders is like any other human being who sometimes needs a little reassurance.  She brings a lot of experience, wisdom, and compassion into Maleeka’s English class and helps Maleeka develop her literary talents, the same talents her father possessed. 

            Maleeka was able to find the courage to disclose personal information in her English class during a group discussion.  This tells the readers that she is gaining confidence in herself and is beginning to ignore other people’s criticisms and mocks.  Maleeka’s journal serves as a written record of her emotions and talents as a creative writer.  Besides being a wiz in mathematics and a good listener, she can communicate her thoughts through characters in a notebook.  Although Maleeka’s notebook journal helps her to communicate thoughts and emotions, it can not prepare her for life experiences such as the peer pressure from Charlse and the forgiveness from Miss Saunders.

            Maleeka learned a lot from her experience with Charlse and the twins when they all burned and vandalized Miss Saunders classroom.  Although peer pressure got the best of Maleeka, she overcame her obstacles and remained true to her character thanks to the love and support of her family and the professionalism of a teacher with a different face.     

Literature Circle Response Self Evaluation


Describe the processes you went through as you created your project.


            I began by recording all the important turning points of the book.  I sequenced the relevant chains of events that Maleeka Madison experienced.  I then evaluated how these events shaped the gender of Maleeka’s character and affected me as the reader.  I combined my meaning of the book with my thoughts and interpreted them with images that communicated my emotions and feelings toward the book itself.  

 In what way does your project reflect an important part of the book?

            My project reflects Maleeka Madison’s life struggles throughout the book.  This includes the loss of her father is seen in her eyes.  Many of his physical attributes are seen in Maleeka’s face.  She struggles through middle school with relentless peers whom ridicule her because of her dark skin tone.  Char and the twins are the worst of her offenders and they are supposedly her friends.  They are depicted at the top right of my collage located next to Maleeka’s journal about Akeelam.  Maleeks’a journal serves as an indirect diary of her feelings.  The fire at the very bottom of my collage represents the rage of peer pressure and Miss Saunders curtains. 

 How dose this project show what you have learned from the book?       

            My collage displays I have applied my knowledge of the book and combined my ideas and with the book’s themes and characters.  My personal reflection reveals how I was affected by the book and how I have learned from this reading experience. 

 When someone views your project, what will they learn about your book?

            The viewer will see the book is about hardship and involves a notebook of some sort.  Although the notebook is not completely centered, it is a focal point.  This is exactly the way Maleeka’s notebook is portrayed in the novel.  The plots and characters are seen on opposite sides of the picture plane.  The scale of Maleeka’s face is larger than the characters on the right (Char and the twins) depicting the size and strength of Maleeka’s character.  However, Maleekas face has hints of Miss Saunders and her father making them part of her character as well.  The viewer will learn the book has many messages and learning experiences.