29 Jan, 2018
10 : 00
English Week this year offered a smorgasbord of activities and challenges for our students.
During the week students could enter the “Good and Evil Characters” competition, share their favourite books over a cup of hot chocolate with Mr Chris, read to their hearts’ content with Read Theory, play Wheel of English and write book reviews with Mr Liam.
These activities were quite popular but I think the hot chocolate won the day!
The pièce de résistance of the week was our English Week Assembly. A few weeks ago our students’ song, dance and musical talents were on display in the Talent Showcase. With the poetic contributions of students to English Week, another side of our talented lot was definitely demonstrated.
Each of our Lower Secondary grade levels presented a different form of poetry. The catchy, clever limericks of Grade 6 told us much about each of them; we learnt what Grade 7s liked to eat through their food fest performance poetry; Grade 8 presented us with anthropomorphic poetry while Grade 9 wrote an a sonnet about themselves and the class. It was faithful to the rather strict criteria of stress and rhyme demanded by this genre of poem.
The Upper Secondary Grades 11 and 13 gave us insights into the creativity and beauty of poetry while Grade 12 took an irreverent approach to Alfred Noyes’ ballad, The Highwayman.
Grade 11 students worked in pairs to create “Seasons of Yantai in Haiku” - the beautifully simple, ancient form of Japanese poetry. The challenge was to meet the explicit criteria: three lines; line 1 of 5 syllables, line 2 of 7 syllables and line 3 of 5 syllables. Those of you who heard the haikus read by the students know how beautifully crafted each one was.
Grade 13 students have been crafting their own free verse poetry for the past few weeks as part of their English curriculum. The students chose a photo from a selection of photographs to then create a poem based on their selection. The students have amazed me with their sensitivity, empathy and creativity as they have worked with words to create the effect they intended. Each student has written a poem that has meaning to them as an individual.
English week was very successful – students were presented with opportunities to be creative, to have fun and to develop their skills with their use of the English language. And the students did this with confidence and skill showing us once again just how talented they are.
Head of Secondary English