Today I took an assembly consisting of 120 children between Year 1-6. Both the infants and juniors at MMPS in Didsbury this morning where great and very responsive to the way their first official poetry competition was launched.
I learnt today that call and response poetry works wonders as long as you have a narrative the children can get excited about. Fun games to learn about metaphors and exercises that teach rhyme and rhythm are brilliant to introduce poetry to children. Keeping it short, snappy and varied helps keep them focused! Will be workshopping with them soon around the theme of ‘Light’ which was National Poetry Day’s theme for this year. I even got time to read out Lemn Sissay’s wonderful tweets about a hot buttered sky and split yolk sun which prompted discussions about language and meanings!
They loved my poem called ‘The Rocket’ with names and scenarios they could relate to, and warmed to the fact that it was about Mariyah and Idreece! Best part was the chatty Year 1 boy who kept insisting he wanted to workshop with me but also why I wasn’t reading out the rest of the pages in my hand! All in all, a mighty good session with some little creative geniuses! Xxx
Yesterday I was delighted to be welcomed by Community On Solid Ground in Manchester to deliver a poetry/spoken word workshop to a 7-14 aged girls group! Everybody produced some really creative work and some was absolutely amazing! The imagination is a wonderful thing and couple that with curious minds and creative agency- something wonderful happens! Language is such a powerful tool and to be able to harness it to say something in a unique way was a lesson all the girls went away with!
I left hoping that they carry on writing the world with their imaginations. One girl told me that she stopped writing so much because teachers had discouraged her! I am pro-education but I thoroughly believe in discovering fiction and non fiction reading outside of school. To find material that expands your heart and mind and gets you thinking – be that alternative histories, religion, study of languages, world travel, art, activism, people – children should be encouraged to truly search for ‘education’ outside of official learning! All the stuff school convinced you ‘wasn’t important!’
Yesterday reminded me how enriched the younger generations’ minds are and that with some creative investment, all can be convinced and given confidence that they can find their voices and be heard ( with hard work and commitment ) despite what the systems throw at you! We are phenomenal creatures xxx
So my entry to the Pangaea Poetry Slam can be found on the link below! It’s the first recording of mine that has been uploaded to YouTube and I still dislike the sound ofmy own voice! If you enjoy it though, please feel free to share 🙂 xxx
I had a wonderful time in Dewsbury today where I was invited to read some of my poetry at an event hosted by the Yorkshire Adabee Forum. Ghazals, sketches, poetry, shayree and much more were a pleasure to watch and be part of. Met some very inspiring women of the community and some individuals truly committed to making change. Listening to Seema Ghazal, renowned playwrite and poet was a delight. Ghazal Ansari also delivered poetry. Looking forward to seeing them all again! Highlight? My trophy 🙂 x
Join Women Asylum Seekers Together as they take part in a show full of song, poetry and performance! The girls have been working real hard and it will be an honour listening to the poems we created together in the workshops!