How Amanda Gorman's Journey Inspires Young People

March 06, 2021

Quote of the Week

"As with the butterfly, adversity is necessary to build character in people." -- Joseph B. Wirthlin

Poet Amanda Gorman Inspires Kids With Speech Disorders

Youth poet laureate Amanda Gorman’s struggles and achievements offer important lessons for both kids and parents.

“Poetry has never been the language of barriers, it’s always been the language of bridges.” In November 2018, Amanda Gorman shared this advice with a group of students during her TED Talk. The youth poet laureate who wowed the nation at the 2021 presidential inauguration speaks often of barriers—those of race, class, gender, and opportunity. She also spoke to these students, and has shared with many others, about the barriers she has faced as a public speaker with a speech and language disorder.

Born prematurely with her twin sister, Gorman’s auditory processing disorder as well as articulation concerns have presented challenges for the young poet, but she has chosen to use those challenges to encourage other kids following in her footsteps. [Read Article]

Reading Corner

Title: Change Sings
By: Amanda Gorman
Ages: 4-8

Why? "The lyrical book, titled Change Sings: A Children's Anthem, follows a young girl who leads a cast of characters on a musical journey, learning along the way that together they have the power to make meaningful change. It is illustrated by Loren Long, who also provided illustrations for President Barack Obama's Of Thee I Sing: A Letter To My Daughters.

"I wrote Change Sings as a children's anthem to remind young readers that they have the power to shape the world," Gorman announced on Instagram." -- PopSugar Review

Be the Change

Share Amanda Gorman's personal journey story with the children in your life. Invite them to reflect on a challenge they might be able to transform into a gift.