With our second day of middle school tech writing camp complete, I am no doubt more fired up about the campers and their writing, but I am also exhausted. Today was a huge poetry day along with tying up some loose ends with our writing yesterday.
We started today with the students writing 25 word stories in their composition notebooks. I showed the campers the examples on Kevin Hodgson’s Prezi. The campers enjoyed the many stories that were in the Prezi. We then proceeded to share our own 25 word stories out loud. Participants did an amazing job! We then quickly transitioned into our poet coming in and speaking to them about writing and what it means to be a poet/writer. Robert Fanning was our poet and he did a super job with his presentation. He had the students create this huge word wall on our whiteboard and then he read some poems to the kids. He discussed the power that words have, something that students today need to hear again and again. At the end of his presentation, he took the campers down the hall and opened a box full of words on pieces of paper. He then had the students throw them in the air and once they landed, the students needed to form lines of poetry. He instructed them to be silly and non-traditional and I was impressed with how our campers worked on this. I was even more impressed by one young man who had some really powerful lines. Below are some pictures of the activity and the lines individuals came up with:
When our poet departed today, the students wrote three different poems. They wrote something called a diamond poem where they started with a topic like female and then end up at the complete opposite which would be male in this case. In addition to their diamond poems, they wrote haiku poems and then collaboratively wrote a poem that rhymed. You can see student work on youthvoice.net. Their work is under CRWP and writing poems. I encourage you to check out some of their work.
Throughout the time the participants were working on their writing they used Ipads for the duration of the day. Some campers had experience with using Ipads, others did not. Students were actively engaged in writing using Google Doc/Drive and Youth Voices. There were very few gliches and overall, the students did a plethora of writing today incorporated with the use of technology. They finished out their day responding to other camp participants work on Youth Voices and trying to polish their detective skills by solving some of the staged scenes that were posted on to the Youth Voices website.
With all of the writing the campers have done so far, our goal for this camp is to look at a way we can incorporate the three major areas of writing the Common Core State Standards focuses on: narrative, informational, argumentative. Yesterday we asked our participants to be detectives and try and solve a murder which led them to writing a police report, a great lead into argumentative writing. Today, we focused on poetry, part of the narrative world of writing. Thursday we will look at research, a type of informational writing. Our adventure continues tomorrow as we embark on our writing marathon and hear another guest speaker.