Crazy is Normal

Crazy is Normal: a classroom exposé - Lloyd Lofthouse

Crazy is Normal by Lloyd Lofthouse that tells the story of a year in a school in his life as a teacher. He was teaching college prep English and a journalism class that worked on the school newspaper. Mr.Lofthouse kept a detailed journal for this year at Nogales High School in California. We learn his methods of teaching, what he will tolerate and what he won't in class. We the reader are introduced to many students, both the at risk kids and the achievers who will go on to better their lives. Mr.Lofthouse felt that each child has a chance and that they also have to want to take that chance to get out of the neighborhoods they live in and succeed. He was intolerant of kids who mouthed off in class and treated others unkind. Off to detention they would go and their parents would be called. It seems that there were a lot of parents who didn't care or think education was important.

I imagine that it was extremely hard to teach anything at this school, as it was in less than desirable neighborhoods, with the drive by shootings and other crimes that happened in the area, sometimes right on the school grounds. It appeared to me that Mr. Lofthouse was a dedicated teacher who excelled when his students did well, while still trying to encourage those who were at risk. The book as a memoir was well written and gives the reader a sense of who he is, not only a teacher but an established author as well. I have read one of his novels, My Splendid Concubine and I have enjoyed both books. I highly recommend both of these books.