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Summer SAVY Session 6, Day 5, Writing with Fire

Posted by on Friday, July 28, 2023 in blog, SAVY.

Today was a wonderful conclusion to our time “writing with fire.” In the morning, students began by reflecting on their experiences. I was thrilled to see that so many of them are taking away a newfound belief in themselves as poets, listeners, and storytellers. Next, we explored the final text that students will take home, Thanha Lai’s verse memoir Inside Out & Back Again. Reading selected poems from this book gave us a chance to reflect on all that we had learned about the form and write one final piece to include in our memoirs. 


Then, students worked collaboratively to revise and edit their memoirs, sequencing their poems in a way that they felt best told their story. In the afternoon, students had a visit from a professional children’s book publisher who talked about the publishing process and led students in making creative covers to advertise their stories. I hope students submit their poems for publication one day—they are too good to keep secret!  


Students should have all of their poems collected on one Google document that they have access to and are able to print if they and their families so choose. 


Some questions to help students reflect on their experiences might include: 

  • What was your favorite poem that you wrote this week and why? 
  • Which book or poem did you most enjoy reading?  
  • What new skills or perspectives did you take away from this week? 
  • If you were to add another poem to your memoir, what would it be about?  


I am sincerely grateful for the chance to work with our wonderful students this week. They are well on their way to becoming advanced poets, discussants, and successful middle-school English students!