In April 2016, 8th grade Language Arts classes celebrated National Poetry Month with style.
(Thanks to Mr. Ausburn for putting together the video)
Here are some student reviews of the event:
Brevard Middle School is going "underground" so to speak. Nelson's Nightlight Highlights and the aMUSEment Cafe were open for business as eighth graders recited memorized poems and enjoyed coffee and donuts.
This is all part of the eighth grade poetry unit. In addition to memorizing and reciting a well-known poem, students also learned more about famous poets, learned about form, structure, imagery, and sounds in poems, and they learned how to analyze the poem of their choice. These students aren't likely to forget what they learned--at least not for a long time!
April 29th, also known as a Friday to students, was known as an epic Friday to the 8th graders at Brevard Middle School. Why, you ask? Because of Friday Night Highlights in Mrs. Nelson's classroom and the aMUSEment Cafe in Mrs. Muse's class. Each class held a poetry slam complete with coffee, dark clothes, and a darkened room. Pretty awesome, right? I will admit that memorizing poems was challenging, but totally worth it to show off your genius to the class and the camera. Look forward to more Brevard poetry slams next year!
Nelson's Nightlight Highlights: that's the location of the 2016 Poetry Slam, featuring the stiffest recitation competition on the East Coast. But don't let the fancy name fool you--with professional(ish) readers, artists, and coffeemakers, this was no simple gathering. Days of memorization! Hours of artistic work! Minutes of drinking coffee! And it all boils down to a handful of seconds devoted to the best poetry the world has seen. With big names like Frost, Poe, and Wordsworth, this is THE biggest poetry reading.
It's April, and I sit in Ms. Nelson's Nightlight Highlights waiting for the poetry that's about to begin. Around me are people eating, talking quietly, or mumbling the poems they've been practicing for weeks. There's tension in the air, and as the first person is called up, a strange, tense calm spreads over the many people in the room. Darkness wraps us all like cloaks, and the lone voice of the speaker goes on. This was all day for Ms. Nelson, and a "right of passage" almost for the 8th grade; a nerve-wracking and important tradition.
On Friday, April 29, a poetry slam was held in the temporary coffee shops of Nelson's Nightlight Highlights and the aMUSEment Cafe! These wonderful student readers had been working hard day and night to memorize their poems! The room was filled with wonder and amazement as the soft, memorized words filled the air. Students all wore black in respect for the event. To call the poetry slam anything other than amazing would be a lie! We can only hope next years is just as amazing when the 8th grade coffee shops reopen their doors.