What is it that inspires us to put pencil to paper?
A song? A poem? An experience? An emotional response to our world?
So many things happen in the lives of children everyday that illicit strong feelings and powerful, personal responses. Providing the space and time necessary to share these thoughts, feelings and ideas in writing is critical for young writers to blossom.
To facilitate and foster a life-long love for writing, children need positive feedback and encouragement from teachers, peers and parents. But most of all, they need to write about their passions, interests and aspirations. What they care about deeply and that which has profound meaning to them is key. As teachers, we must help our students discover their true talents, gifts and abilities by providing authentic experiences that engage all types of learners.
At our monthly parent meeting last night, I asked parents to respond in writing to their children’s poetry. We sat in a circle, reading, interpreting and digesting poems written by all members of Lightning Strike Kids Opera Company. Our task was to reflect on each poem and to write a specific and encouraging comment to the poet about his original composition.
Imagine their responses when the students read the kind, sincere comments from their parents. No doubt, they will want to write more, continuing on this journey of self-discovery through writing.
The poetry was inspired by an original music composition, a high school student’s poem about hope, Nelson Mandela’s legacy and the theme of our opera, reconnection.
Álvaro by Pedro Sarmiento
Destiny’s response to “Álvaro”