An unexpected ending

As April seems to be poetry writing month, I have been teaching my classes in Meghalaya, something about poetry and wondering how they’ll manage to understand it, given their first language is not English. It’s quite hard to explain poetry via zoom, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised by some of our students’ poems just in their first week of poetry.

This one in particular came through today:

I think it was the unexpectedness of the last line that got me, I’ve had students who love whales, elephants, tigers and other wild animals, but to date not a single polar bear.

I feel a tinge of regret, as I read this delightful poem, because I realise that Haban will probably never see a real polar bear in his life, just as it saddens me to think that most of these kids will never even glimpse the ocean.

But they can still learn to write poetry!

5 thoughts on “An unexpected ending

  1. I feel poetry makes writers successful. I felt that when I taught second graders a few years ago. The repeated lines creates success for new writers so does the meaning the poem holds, created with a few words in a line.

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  2. I love this unexpectedness – happens so often when one writes! Haban can certainly research polar bears like we do the stars and the depths of the ocean or places around the world we’ve yet to visit. We can even BE the stars, the ocean, the polar bears when we write! We an be anything and amywhere we want to be. This is the magic of it. I would really love to know WHY he loves them!

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  3. This is beautiful. And yes, it does make me sad to know that there are places and spaces some of your children might not ever know. But how wonderful it is that they can explore them all through reading, through writing.

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