We begin this stint in China by speaking to a compilation of local librarians from English speaking schools in the city. A seditious bunch for sure headed up by our host Kendra Perkins who arranged and organized our first three days in Shanghai with the precision of a – well, a librarian.
“What are you afraid of?”
You could almost smell the wood burning as they set to the task. They were having fun, they were close reading the text, they were writing, they were employing poetic elements, cognitive dissonance was running rampant. I had a ball.
We worked on extended metaphor, personification, and memoir and the students and teachers were super receptive. For extra-added excitement we participated in a practice lockdown and hid amongst the books in the library stacks while Courtney was assigned the role of prowling the school and shaking the locked doors knobs.
So armed with bags of pretzels we brought our two groups together for a little collaboration. The break down ended up with an officer at a table with six students. We had the officers and students talk about their experience writing poetry about personal conflict.
Today Sara and I continued on our writing with cops and kids program. We met with Libbie Royko’s 7th graders and we completed the fist have of a guided writing clinic on conflict. We wrote an example piece together comparing a staged almost fight with a thunderstorm and then we brainstormed details for a personal […]
Teachers are also trying to survive as they are tasked with teaching kids how to take these tests, which they do by digging through past tests, posted online. Forget joy of language and the fun of discovery in poetry, this is line-by-line dissection, painful and delivered without anesthetic.
So, Sara and my latest project involves students and law enforcement officers. It’s something we have been talking about for a long time but never had the chance to implement. We’ve had a couple false starts over the years but we’ve finally got our foot in a door. We’re just starting out and we will […]
We’ve worked with the Language Arts crew in the middle school the last couple times but the official poet wrangler of SAS for this installment, Scott Riley, decided to mix it up a bit this time and we collaborated with the Social Studies and a Science class.