April is National Poetry Month and with it the largest literary celebration in the world. Lower School students joined the tens of millions of people in marking poetry’s important place in our lives. The practice of learning and writing poetry is inspiring, brings joy, and is intentionally connected to RA’s signature public speaking program.
Grade 1 students studied haiku, traditional Japanese poems composed of seventeen syllables, in three lines of five, seven, and five, traditionally evoking images of the natural world. The students wrote their own haiku, some using more contemporary themes, such as the haiku by Preston below. The classmates shared their poetry during a Google meet with Grade 1 Teachers Audra Cartelli and Danielle Getchell, as well as Technology Coordinator Alex Curry, and Head of School Tom Main.
Grade 3 students participated in their annual Poetry Slam on Friday, April 24, with their teachers, Samantha Heller and Pam Clasby. Each student picked a poem to memorize and then recited it for their classmates during an online hangout. By preparing for the Poetry Slam, students begin to learn and understand pitch, voice inflection, and volume, while developing memorization skills. Much like the classroom environment, the space of the online hangout provided a safe place for students to practice self-expression using language and emotion to convey the author’s message to the audience. The audience enjoyed favorite poems by Shel Silvertstein, Robert Frost, Jack Prelutsky, Dr. Seuss and T.S. Eliot among others.