Skip to main content

Student Poems

As the year comes to a close, I wanted to give my students a create way to reflect on their first year of middle school. Their assignment was to write a poem that captured their year. One requirement was that it be an extended metaphor. I showed them some examples, including a little piece from Shakespeare:

“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts.”
-Shakespeare’s As You Like It

We also watched Katie Perry's "Firework" and looked at her use of an extended metaphor in the song. That's all the inspiration they needed. Below are some of the poems written by my students. These are first drafts, untouched by me.

My 7th grade year was a jungle.
I staggered through the vines, tripping at every turn.
It became easier, but it was hard to adjust.
Running, panicking, something was chasing me into the dark caverns of math class.
Piles and piles of horrid paper flooded my way,
making it hard to breathe. Image result for jungle
I almost gave up, numbers and letters telling whether or not I would pass or fail my journey.
But as I entered the joy of history class things became chaotic.
Screams and roars, fill the air around me as we venture through the year,
and teachers screech and throw obstacles from every which way.   
I’m struggling, but I can see the end.
As I run to the freedom that awaits me, I am swallowed once again.
The numbers and letters are back but are much more aggressive and intimidating.
I learn to control them, and a sudden clearing appears.
I have made it out, my life ever more complete than before.

Alex W.

My 7th grader year was like the ocean.
I began with pale, white skin, untouched by influential people.
The water was cold, waves smacking my legs.
I almost stepped out of the water but decided to keep pushing through deeper into the ocean
Eventually I got used to the water, no longer feeling cold to me
Once I thought everything was okay, a huge wave toppled over me, submerging me
I was in pain, struggling to get air
Right before giving up, a hand comes and reaches down for me, pulling me above sea level, saving me.
I was no longer alone in thisImage result for ocean
I was surrounded by people that I now love
I love them for saving me, for warning me for the oncoming waves
The water is now smooth again
As I walk out of the water after a long adventure of ups and downs
My skin is golden, kissed by the sun
I am victorious.

by Taylor N

End of the Year Poem
This school year was a solar system,
intimidating at first but rewarding in the end.
We are separated by hundreds of miles,
yet our goals are ultimately the same.
The sun our futures, shining bright.
Us the planets, orbiting the sun.
Around and around and around we go.
The asteroids present challenges,
trying to knock us off our path.
Stars are your teachers, lighting up the dark,
creating a path to follow.
The vastness of space our potential,
infinitely extending in all directions.
Conquering time and space is a daunting task,
however we get through it in anyway possible.
The concept of space is confusing and mysterious,
but somehow people managed to grasp it.
This new year seemed confusing and mysterious at first too,
but somehow we made it through.
This year was a solar system and the future is bright.
The possibilities are endless for us,

much like the universe we are limitless too

by Sophie P

My seventh grade English class was a neighborhood bookshop. Warmed by the faces of returning 
customers, my classmates. Everyone is remembered by the women who runs the shop
and the show. Mrs. Karney.
She knows how they walk, talk, act, and their fascinating interests.
The novels contain needed knowledge presented in an exciting way.
The stress of reading a book before the movie is the pressure of completing piles homework 
My spicy,hot drink is my love for reading and writing,
Always giving me the energy to persevere through challenging situations.
As time goes on and the year comes to a close, the bookshop begins to age.
The candles burn down and children check­out.
The owners fear of being forgotten, all the hard work put into new situations. However the constant 
opening and closing hours are a continuous routine. As children become adolescents
Adolescent, teens
And teens adults

Everyone will remember their time spent at the neighboring bookshop

Kayla R.

Popular posts from this blog

Ditch those Reading Logs: Try Flipgrid Instead

If you've read my posts or follow me on Twitter, you know how I feel about pointless projects and homework!  This year I made it official and ditched homework.  It's the best decision I've ever made as a teacher.  My students are loving it, I am loving it, and I think most of their parents are loving it! I have completely transformed the way I run my classroom and feel like my students are more engaged and excited than ever. 

Student Example (Click to watch)

Like homework, I never felt quite right about assigning reading logs.  Whenever my own kids had to read a book on their own for school, they were initially excited. First, they were told they had to read twenty minutes each night. Then the dreaded reading logs began.  They had to write  down what pages they read, as well as a summary.  Urgh! I can only imagine lying on the beach with my own book and having to complete a reading log.  No thanks!  And I am not going to lie. I just might have signed one of my son's read…

Have a Dance Party Before Class Starts

This year I decided to play music as students are entering my classroom and before the final bell rings.  I had no idea what a difference it would make!  Why didn't I do this before?  It creates a positive, upbeat mood and seems to energize my students and ME! 

At first I thought they'd complain when I blasted disco tunes by artists like Chic, The Bee Gees, and Vickie Sue Robinson ("Turn the Beat Around").   I thought they'd groan when I played Bon Jovi, Journey, and Whitesnake. I thought they'd roll their eyes when I played clean versions of songs by Tupac and Snoop Dogg.  I really thought they'd lose it when I played Gypsy Kings.  NOPE!  They loved it!  I had NO idea that my kids would react they way they did.  Here are the results:

If I don't have time to put the music on, several kids will ask, "Where's our dance party?" I really like Pandora because I can create my own stations.  If you're looking for a way to create a positive vi…

Creating a Cell Phone Sanctuary

Over the past few years, I have noticed a change in my students.  Not only are they tethered to their phones, but they are more anxious than ever.  In the past two school years, I have had at least three students experience school anxiety so severe that they could not come to school.   Those are just MY students.  This year I have had one student leave our school after her mother spent three weeks trying to drag her to class each morning as her daughter screamed, cried, and sometimes refused to get out of the car.  According to an article titled "Teen Anxiety and Depression: the Kids are not Alright" published in 2016, "In 2015, about 3 million teens ages 12 to 17 had had at least one major depressive episode in the past year, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. More than 2 million report experiencing depression that impairs their daily function. About 30% of girls and 20% of boys–totaling 6.3 million teens–have had an anxiety disorder, according t…