Who would think kids would have so much fun creating poems by their design? The Indian Trail Cultural Arts Center set the stage for the “My Great Summer Vacation Adventure” Poetry Workshop for Kids. This was my first poetry workshop for kids, as well as for the center, and I believe that the children inspired me more that I tried to inspire them. They came to the table with excitement and an eagerness to create poetry. That energy took my enthusiasm to facilitate this workshop to a higher level.
To my surprise these youngsters, as young as the age of 5, knew what a Haiku, Free Verse, Acrostic, Rhyme and Limerick poem was! I was tickled pink to see that their young minds were open to new discoveries, as they crafted their poems to a summer theme. They learned the formal and abbreviated definition of what a poem is and how to use their 5 senses when crafting their poems. By incorporating theme, observation, imagery and emotion into the poems, they brought a visual presentation on where they went on vacation, where they are going on vacation or places they would like to go on vacation. Several wrote poems about going to the beach, visiting their grandparents or taking a Disney cruise, while others wrote about places they would like to visit such as Colombia, a rainforest or Madagascar. One young poet wrote about going around the world and related it to how her world encompassed many of the places she’s visited, including church.
Our young poets included: Isabella Fish, Kayla James, Tyler James, Tyler McCallister, Kyla McKenzie, Myles McKenzie, Tyler McKenzie, Jeremy Palma, Molly Roth, Natalie Wallace and Kaavya Washington.
Susan Didier, Indian Trail Community Development Specialist and I presented our young poets with a Certificate of Achievement and goodie bag. Over 50 people, including the 11 children attended this premier event and it turned out to be a great success. I felt a deep sense of gratification and humbleness, because these young people taught me so much about the human spirit and connection.
Without coercing them, I was floored as I watched each one of them interact with each other and helped each other out if they were stomped about a word to use or visuals to add to their collage. They each made a collage to complement their poems, which added the visual texture that helped to bring their poems alive! I am so proud of these young poets and grateful for their parents or grandparent’s willingness to sign them up to attend this workshop. I suppose I shouldn’t have been, but I was surprised to see that we had 5 boys to participate, when typically only girls participate in workshops or events like this. The diversity of this group was a monumental lesson for adults, because these youngsters worked together to produce some amazing poetry and complementary collage in a 2-hour workshop. Afterwards, they were served refreshments before their recitals began at 6:30pm. Needless to say, I truly enjoyed being the coordinator and facilitator of this amazing poetry event. Susan Didier and I will plan more poetry-related events for children and adults, to work in between the other art, music and literary events, that the Indian Trail Cultural Arts Center hosts each week. To stay abreast of weekly activities you can email Susan Didier at SDidier@admin.indiantrail.org to be added to the email blasts and newsletters. Be sure to LIKE their Facebook page for additional events and announcements.
Following the children’s poetry open mic, adults were invited to share poetry of their own! While April commemorates National Poetry Month, we want to keep this genre alive and growing in our community throughout the year. With all of the other summer activities that kids are involved in during their vacation, I have to chalk this poetry workshop up as a delightful success. There will be more poetry special events coming soon! This is one voluntary effort that I truly enjoy! If you enjoy tea and poetry, follow the Tea & Poetry Book Club Facebook Page or Blog for other exciting news and opportunities. Cheers!