I chose Helen Keller as my person for the individual project. The reason I chose Helen Keller is that I think she was an extraordinary person. She overcame some very difficult and personal battles. I have been intrigued, fascinated, and curious about her and her disabilities since I was around 12 or 13. I even learned to sign the alphabet, partly so I could talk to my friends in class, the teacher would not know what we were doing, and I wanted to know what it was like to use my hands to communicate.
Helen Keller was born in Alabama in the late 1800’s. When she was almost two, she had an illness that caused her to lose her ability to see, hear, and speak. This was a time when people did not know how to deal with people or children with disabilities. Most of the time they were sent to special hospitals or institutions to live. Helen parents could not do that and did not ...view middle of the document...
She was an extremely bright and intelligent child in spite of her disabilities. In 1894, Helen and Anne moved to New York, so Helen could attend a school to learn to speak as a deaf person. She was unable to improve her speech. In 1896, she enrolled in a young women school so she could get ready to attend college. She started school in 1900 and graduated in 1904.
In 1916, Anne was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Helen also fell in love. Before Anne went away for treatment, she and Helens mother broke them up. Helen wanted to be in love but stated (Keller, 1916) “I faced consciously the strong sex-urges of my nature and turned that life energy into channels of satisfying sympathy and work.”
In 1933, Anne wrote a book. Helen (1933) said the book does not portray her in the way I know her. Anne died in 1936; it was a devastating loss to Helen. Her and a family friend went abroad to try to get over the loss.
With the help of Anne and many good people, Helen was able to overcome some very difficult problems that would have devastated most people at that time. It was very important to Helen to get an education so that she could help other people with the same or similar problems.
If she had not gone after what she wanted and learned in spite of her disabilities she would not have been able to have such a productive life and help as many people as she did. Helen wrote several books and toured the world teaching other people about the importance of not judging other people and helping them to succeed in life.
Reading about Helen Keller has inspired me to keep studying and try to better myself. I do not have to overcome the obstacles that she has. It has made me want to keep trying and not give up no matter what.
Helen died in 1868, of heart failure. She was known as a heroine to most schoolchildren. She helped many people and was a wonderful person. Someday I hope to have the courage and drive to better myself the way that she did.