Divergent’s Hollywood success helps local students

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – “Divergent” hits theaters Friday and is expected to bring in about $60 million, but film-makers are not the only ones benefiting from the release.

24-Hour News 8 found that these young adult books-turned-movies are having a major impact in area classrooms too.

Jason Brumback, an eighth grade English teacher at Chapel Hill in Wayne Township, said these are books kids often read on their own in addition to assigned reading homework. An added benefit, he said, is the “Divergent” books are a trilogy, so kids usually read all three. The books are popular among his students, and he’s seen them cross over to teachers and parents.

Though they’re not required reading like the classics, he said he does discuss the books with his students.

“We do a lot of the classics in class, we read ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ and ‘Fahrenheit 451′ and Shakespeare, but really what we want more than anything is kids to love reading and to make it a part of their normal lives,” Brumback said. “So young adult lit, there’s never been a better time to love young adult literature. It’s really popular.”

An added benefit, he said, of the “Divergent” books and other series like “Harry Potter” or “The Hunger Games” is they teach creativity, and that can help students on standardized tests and in their own creative writing.

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