Poetic Power

A Creative Communication blog

Featured Student Writer: Heather Hamann

HEATHERHAMANNHeather Hamann was a 6th grader at Haverstraw Upper Elementary School in New York when she was selected as a national Top Ten Winner for her essay, “Stars.”  This means that Heather’s essay was one of the ten best submitted from students all over the United States and Canada in the 4-6 grade division.

Heather loves doing anything creative.  Her passion lies in music and writing; she plays the piano, violin, sings, and especially loves writing fantasy pieces.  Heather has written a book called When Fire Fell, and is currently working on a book called The Many Faces.  Poetry is also a passion of Heather’s.  She has had a few poems published so far.  She also loves to read; her favorite authors are William Shakespeare, J. K. Rowling, Robert Frost, Rick Riordan, and J. R. R. Tolkien.  Heather enjoys swimming and creating art in her free time.

“Stars” was inspired by a trip to see her family in Peru in the summer of 2012.  “While we were there we went to see Macchu Picchu, and on the way home from Aguas Calientes, I saw one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen in my entire life: the stars.” Heather explains, “It was like nothing I had ever seen before and I was overwhelmed with inspiration, so when I found [Creative Communication’s] essay contest, I immediately thought of that experience.  Seeing something as awe-inspiring as that only happens once or twice in your life.”

In the future, Heather plans to graduate from high school and attend an Ivy League college majoring in physics.  She would then like to go to graduate school in astrophysics so she can teach astrophysics at a college for ten years or so.  Once she retires, she hopes to write and continue music as a hobby.

To learn more about our national writing contests, visit www.PoeticPower.com.

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Featured Teacher: Daisy Kemper

daisy kemper 2010Daisy Kemper teaches gifted students in first through fifth grade at four different schools in North Carolina.   Daisy has been participating in our national writing contests for several years and has helped over 100 of her students become published writers.  One of these students, third-grader Jessica Sigmon, was selected as a national Top Ten Winner in the Fall 2012 contest.  You can view Jessica’s winning poem here.

We asked Daisy to share how she engages students in writing and brings so much success to her classroom.

Daisy’s love of poetry began with her first grade classes.  All year Daisy brings in poems that are exciting or funny for each season or if they are applicable to a topic she is teaching.  She talks with her class about literary elements; her students love onomatopoeia words.  Second grade students have to find the work of a poet they enjoy and bring those into the class to share.  By third grade, the class is exploring many types of poets and discussing all of the literary elements that good poets use.  The class then begins to write poetry and to become a “kind critic.”

“I really believe that because I love poetry and get excited about it,  so do my students.” Daisy explains, “Every year many of them tell me it was their favorite unit of study.  They really look forward to this contest and are so proud when they receive an award at the end of the year for having their poem published.”

Thank you, Daisy, for helping to inspire and motivate student writers!! We look forward to seeing more of your students’ excellent work, and wish you the best in your 2013-2014 school year!

To learn more about our national writing contests, visit www.PoeticPower.com.

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