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Youth Communication equips and empowers educators and youth workers with real teen-written stories and a literacy-rich training model to engage struggling youth and build their social and emotional learning skills. [more]
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YCteen (teen magazine)
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(foster teen magazine)
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Why Our Stories
Why Our Stories?
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We start with biographical teen stories, and build everything on those stories.

 

Our stories are uniquely effective at capturing and distilling a teens’ change process and making it accessible to a reader.

 

They emerge from a highly intentional writing process. There are four elements that contribute to transformative stories:

  • Recruitment
  • Story structure
  • Showing vs. telling
  • Agency

1. Recruitment: We recruit from foster care agencies, alternative schools, and other setting where the writers will have the same challenges as our readers. That makes them credible messengers.

 

2. Story structure: Every story has a beginning, middle, and an end. Teen’s natural inclination is to gravitate to the beginning (the trauma or challenge they faced) and the end (the successful resolution).


We refocus them on the middle—the place where they describe the choices they made in the face of challenges, how those choices changed them, and the social and emotional skills they used to manage the change.

 

3. Showing vs. telling: The teen writers want to tell their stories. But teen readers don’t like being lectured by their peers any more than by adults. We teach teens how to show the actions they took and the changes that resulted. That makes their actions accessible and transparent to readers.

 

4. Agency: The result is a story that models the strategies that the writer used to change, and the agency that drove the change.

 

The credible messenger, the focus on the change process, and the detailed showing of how the process works, make our stories uniquely effective.


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