Sunday, June 22, 2014

I Heart Poetry

The last two years that I taught at West Jordan High School (oh so long ago), I put together the Poetry Out Loud competition for my school and the region. I LOVED being apart of it. It tested my organizational skills, but grew my love of poetry exponentially. It also amazing to see high schoolers recite poetry with beautiful understanding and subtle emotion.

 Being with high schoolers for most of my week, I though I knew what they are: funny, obnoxious, outspoken, shy, narrow-minded, rude, whiny, weird. But I was always blown away when I saw them in a different arena, doing something they loved. I could see glimpses of the people they were going to become. I was especially moved when I watched my students, high schoolers,  recite poetry. It made any extra work worth it.

At my job I was asked constantly by students how the material was going to relate to their lives post-school. I was told by students that their parents would complain about the same thing (!(annoying)). And I would explain about higher level thinking skills and important analytical skills that could transferred to many arenas.

But I wish I would have said literature and poetry and learning how to express yourself is important because it makes you a better human. A deeper, richer soul. A person who is more human than consumer. I tired to argue how what I taught was relevant to a career or practical life, but not everything of worth is practical. If being human is just to pay bills and have a nice house that sucks. Poetry makes me feel human. 

As I retire momentarily from the classroom, I hope that I was able to teach that somehow to at least a handful of kids. 

Today I was falling asleep holding Thatcher and a snippet of a poem crossed my mind. I'm grateful I have that to drift off to sleep sometimes and not only lists of things to do when I wake. 

1 comment:

Jim and Vanessa said...

Brittney this was a beautiful post, and you are a beautiful person :). I miss it.