Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Middle School Young Authors (November 30, 2010)

When I was in middle school, I wrote poetry like a madwoman.  During a stage in life when teenagers are trying to figure out who they are and how the world works, I believe writing can greatly help them process and understand.  And anyway, it's a lot of fun.

Three friends returned for our second Middle School Young Authors club.  They are some of the most hilarious girls who can also write compellingly and thoughtfully.  We started with writing "I am..." sentences, and their self-assesments ran from amusing boastfulness ("I am gorgeous." and "I am better than you.") to some really excellent writing ("I am the one to cock an eyebrow at your jokes.")

They next made a list of five unwanted gifts, which ranged from boxes to lightbulbs to boyfriends.  Then each girl chose one unwanted gift and wrote a story about it.  I am always amazed at how different each story turns out, even though everyone is given the same prompt.  One girl wrote an essay explaining why a certain gift was unwanted.  Another wrote a fairy tale in which the unwanted gift actually became something valuable.  The last girl wrote a hilarious story about how she got the unwanted gift (answer:  senile great-grandmothers).

Someone once said that great writing should either make us laugh or make us cry.  This group definitely has the laughter part down (and I'm sure they could make me cry if they wanted).  Pictures below.


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