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The Lesson Case

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In The Lesson, by Toni Cade Bambara, the author presents us with the most impacting character, Miss Moore. Miss Moore is an educated, black woman that speaks and dresses properly, and is addressed as a teacher. The short story takes place in a ghetto, where the characters live, in poor quality apartments. There, most of the kids live in poverty and uneducated homes. Miss Moore often takes the neighborhood crew of kids on trips. During one of these trips she teaches them an effective lesson about the possibilities outside of what they know.

The lesson was effective because Miss Moore took the kids to a toy store which was caught the attention of them. While they walk around looking through the windows some of the kids say, "This is mine, that's mine, I gotta have that, that was made for me, I was born for that"(109). This example shows that the kids were instantly drawn the things in the store and that they wanted some of the things. Another example is, "Hey, I'm going to buy that there"(109). This showed that because they were attracted to the items in the store they were "going to" buy those things. This quote further explains that they were determined to buy what they had liked, maybe not now, but definitely at some point. In conclusion the toy store was the best place to have taken the crew since they were kids and were easily attracted to toys. It also gave them the right determination to get the toys at some point.

The lesson was effective because it showed that through education, the children could have what they wanted. While looking at a sailboat that cost one thousand one hundred ninety-nine dollars, one of the kids tells Miss Moore that he wonders how much a real boat costs. Miss Moore replies saying, "Why don't you check that out and report back to the group?"(111). The example demonstrates that with a little research, and questioning you can find out what you wish to acknowledge. It also shows that she wants them to all be educated and share the education they achieve with others.

The lesson was effective because it woke the kids up to their place in society. One of the kids goes off talking about the things that Miss Moore talks about. For example, "Where we are is who we are, Miss Moore always pointing out"(112). This explained to the crew that they were, where they put themselves. So, if they put themselves somewhere else they would be someone else. Another example is, "Imagine for a minute what kind of society it is in which some people can spend on a toy what it would cost to feed a family of six or even seven [...]"(113). This proves the point that they cant spend what rich people can, because they are poor and can feed their whole family with the money it would take to buy only one of those toys.

The lesson that Miss Moore taught the kids had a good out come in the end. Even though some of the ways were a little harsh,



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