English Department Comes Together to Create in Advance of Hansell Poet Visit

By 7th grade English teacher Kate Tabor
The 7th grade reads a lot of poetry throughout the year. Sometimes we write our own poems in response to work we have read, and sometimes we respond visually to the written word.

Each year before our Jeanne Harris Hansell Endowed Poet visits Parker, I ask my students to read a curated selection of the poet’s work and select a line or a phrase from one of the poems that evokes a visual image for them.

Using beautiful, handmade papers and craft or white card stock, they create a collage that represents the image the poem inspired for them. They can be realistic, work in an abstract way or create in any way that feels appropriate to the poem and the visual, but they must incorporate the line of poetry in their collage.

This year our department has spent time sharing curricular ideas, and when it was my turn, this is the project I chose to share. I gave the department members a collection of Julian Randall’s poems and rich art materials to work with. The results were bright and varied, and the character of Randall’s poems comes through the images created. 

The posters are these collages.

We are excited to host Randall this April and look forward to the week when he is here to work in classes across the school. Before he arrives, the 7th graders will have the opportunity to read his work and create their own collage. 
Francis W. Parker School educates students to think and act with empathy, courage and clarity as responsible citizens and leaders in a diverse democratic society and global community.