Finally Seen

By Emily, age 10

In the book, “Finally Seen” by Kelly Yang, I can really relate to Lina Gao. This book makes
me feel Finally Seen, because I feel just like Lina, in a different way. For example, Lina has
trouble with learning English. She’s scared to talk in class, afraid of making an incorrect
pronunciation or grammar mistake. I feel the same in Chinese class. I feel like I’m not good
enough at Chinese, like Lina. But we both try our best and end up doing really good!! Lina
speaks up in front of a huge crowd, I instead speak up as much as I can in front of my Chinese
class, (to learn as much as possible). But unlike Lina, I am not as scared of making a mistake.
But I still think “Will my classmates tease me?” “Will my teacher call me out?” “Will they think I’m
stupid?” These thoughts relate me to Lina. Both of us are scared of doing something incorrect,
while learning a new language. But, thankfully both of us in the end get over our fear and speak

Another example I feel like Lina is because we both feel very nervous starting a new school,
(understandably) but immediately make a new trusting friend. Lina’s immediate new friend is
Finn. Mine are Hannah, Alice, and Mikayla. Finn is very supportive and helpful to Lina. He tries
to help her fit in in any way. I feel the same way for Hannah, Alice, and Mikayla. They support
my ideas and activities, as I support theirs. They have been my good, good, friends for 5 long
years. Even though Finn sometimes doesn’t understand Lina, he tries to understand and help
her out. This is just like my friends. Sometimes they don’t understand my ideas, humor, and
lovable wacky-ness, but they make me feel just right at home and happy.

Another reason I feel Finally Seen is because both me and Lina meet an kind, supportive,
welcoming, and helpful teacher. That helps us out when we first start attending our new schools!
Lina’s kind, teacher was named Mrs. Carter. My helpful, kind, supportive, and welcoming
teacher was named Ms. Skolnik. Both our teachers understood us, and helped us when we
were having a problem in class. For example Lina’s teacher Mrs. Carter got her a private
English/ESL teacher, named Mrs. Ortiz, when she felt Lina needed help. Mrs. Ortiz helped Lina
learn English, one word at a time. I’m similar like this because when I had a problem, my
teacher would always make time for me, to teach me. And every year at my school Anderson so
far, my teachers, Ms. Skolnik, Ms. G, Ms. Lerman, Ms. Levine, and Ms. Kang, have helped me if
I was ever confused, or needed help. Many thanks to my wonderful teachers and Lina’s
wonderful teachers.

Lastly, me and Lina are similar because books are our sliding door, or window, to us and we
feel strongly about writing stories and reading books. Lina hates mistreatment towards books
because she really connects to the books. One book “Flea Shop” is really meaningful to Lina.
She feels just like the girl in the book, Cat. And even without knowing that much English she can
still understand the book because it’s a Graphic Novel! Which means it’s full of pictures to help
her understand English. After reading the Graphic Novel, Lina decided to write her own, to
share her life with her grandmother, Lao Lao. I like to write stories for fun and to share with my
family and friends. I write Fiction stories rather than Nonfiction, but even then, both me and Lina
like writing stories. As for reading, I could read for hours like Lina couldn’t stop reading “Flea
Shop”! It makes me really happy to read, especially if it relates to me. Lina feels the same! She
loves “Flea Shop” because like Cat, she is teased but pushes through it. This is why “Finally
Seen” makes me feel Finally Seen.