By Jazmin Cruz
During Carol Jago's webinar "Writing Poetry to Read Poetry in Online Spaces", participants were invited to write a poem that reflects the changes in their daily lives during 2020. Using Quincy Troupe's poem, "Flying Kites" as a mentor text, our community of learners wrote their own poems. Pens to Pixels: A Collection of Poetry is a digital magazine we created using the free platform Madmagz.com.
...inviting students to create two lists:
1) things students used to do in school or in their daily lives, and
2) things students do now.
You may use Quincy Troupe's poem "Flying Kites" as a mentor text and this template to help students get started. After students have reviewed and revised their poems, ask them to give it a title. Teacher and peer feedback may help students communicate their thoughts in descriptive ways. Although a digital magazine might be the ideal way of celebrating students' poems, teachers may use a variety of methods for encouraging with their poet-peers. Here, we describe Madmagz as one option for creating a digital poetry magazine.
Using Madmagz to Create a Digital Magazine
Overall, the website is user friendly and great for any level of experience in technology. For students, the fact that the digital magazine can showcase their work publicly beyond their teacher and classmates provides the authentic experience of seeing their published work out in the world. Check with your district's expectations for publishing students' names or faces as you design the digital poetry activity.
Teachers should note that while some students would enjoy the ability to have their work read by others, some may not. Speak to your students about what they are comfortable sharing first and offer students the option of publishing their work using a pen name/pseudonym.
Pens to Pixels: A Collection of Poetry
Magazine Correction: On page 63, Jennifer Williams is listed as being from Blaine, TN. She is from Blaine, MN. On page 23, Janine Wehner is listed as being from CA. She is from Anthem, AZ. On page 52, the poem is by Candace Miles and on page 68, the poem is by Candace Cunard.
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