Pizza Poetry Blog Post #8: Congrats to this year's Pizza Poet Laureates!

Pizza Poetry Day 2017 was a huge success! Congrats to this year's Pizza Poet Laureates, who won custom-made posters from Litographs, gift cards to Domino's, and will be featured in a special section in this year's Pizza Poetry Anthology (to be released late summer 2017).

1st grade - 3rd grade

Help the Fight

She turned into a dragon and she
was golden. I could see the jewels in her skin.
I could hear the sound of her friends cheering for
her like wind on water and encouraging her. I could feel her flat, thin,
and long scales cool under my fingertips. I could feel the gold saddle and reins.
I could smell the fresh air and all of the trees
and bushes around them. I could hear the sounds
of all the dragons walking around and the horses whining.

– Caroline
Grade 2
Edward Hynes Charter School

Senses in the Galaxy

I can see the stars at night
I can see the asteroids
I see the planets
As rockets go by
Going to touch the sky
I can smell the flames
Of the rockets
As they pass on by
Each and every meal I smell
Is from a planet called Riell
I can hear the crunches
As they eat their meals
I can hear the churn
As the french fries burn.

– Audrey
Grade 2
Edward Hynes Charter School

Pizza

P pepperoni is so good
I is perfect
Z zelicious toppings
Z zebras probably eat pizza
A amazing flavors

—Chloe
Grade 2
Akili Academy Of New Orleans

Why is the sun a star?

Why is the sun a star?
Why does the moon change shapes?
Where does light on the moon come from?
Why do we have planets?
Is the Milky Way made out
of milk? Was Pluto a real dog?
Who invented planets?
Who made aliens?

– Angelle
Grade 3
Sylvanie Williams College Prep

Candy Land

I hear the water. I smell the salt.
I see the people swimming.
I touch the island,
and I taste the yucky ocean water.
I’m so happy. I’m at the beach.
I love the beach.
I see the candy. It looks so good.
It tastes so great. I love the chocolate lake.
I hear gingerbread men laughing.
I can touch the gummies. I smell the yummy sugar.
I see the candy castle. The princess looks so very pretty.
I hear the villains making an evil plan.
They are talking about taking over Candy Land.

– Livia
Grade 2
Edward Hynes Charter School

4th grade-6th grade

Why Do the Stars Shine So Bright?

Are my ancestors in the stars looking down on me?
Do the stars reflect the sun?
Is it because God’s love is shining down on me?

Why is the sun so bright?
Is all my family’s love inside the sun?
Do life’s lessons shine on inside the sun?
Is life itself shining down on me?

Why is love so strong?
Is love people’s way of telling you a secret?
Is love people’s way of saying I love you?
Is love my way of telling you something important?

—Teren
5th grade
Audubon Charter School

Why Space?

Why do humans try to explore space?
Why don’t aliens meet us face to face?
Why space?

Are the aliens on Mars purple, blue, or green?
Are there other planets with many rings?
Why space?

Why are most planets big and round?
Are there other planets with livable, solid ground?
Why space?

Why is space starry and bright, but dark and deep?
Why can we only see space when it’s time to sleep?
Why space? Why life? Why are we here?
So many questions, but the answers won’t appear.

—Wyeth
5th grade
Audubon Charter School

Very Fat Pig

There was once a very fat pig
His name was Dig the pig
And one day there was a man
With a frying pan.
And that was the end
Of Dig.

—Toby
Grade 5
Homer A. Plessy Community School

Ode to YouTube

This site known as YouTube has completed my life
If it was not around I don’t know what I would do
And yeah, yeah, I know before 2005 it wasn’t around
But when it’s silent it provides me sound.
My favorite YouTuber is Jake Paul
My YouTube channel subscriber count is very small
Me and YouTube are both 11 years old
I watch YouTube when I’m cold,
It entertains me like no one else,
And that’s my ode to YouTube.

—Tristan
Grade 5
Homer A. Plessy Community School

Little Red Riding Hood in the Hood

Once upon a time...
There lived a little girl named Red.
And she was only 7 years old, and her mom was stupid
because she let her into the woods by herself.
All of a sudden, when she was in the woods, a wolf popped out.
Except it wasn’t a wolf. It was, in fact, a gangster.

—Trinity
Grade 4
Sylvanie Williams College Prep

7th-9th grade

Love

I Love the way
she moves with
her wavy sides.

I Love the way
she moves side
to side.

I Love the way she
smiles. It reminds
me of a shiny dime.

I Love the way she
talks to me. It makes
me feel good inside.

I Love the way she
Laughs. It makes me smile
time to time.

—Ryan
Grade 8
ARISE Academy

You Will Not Be Disconnected

You will not be disconnected,
You will not be able to sit, eat, and be on social media all day, sister.
You will not be able to screenshot and send to your friend and say, “Girl, look at her.”
You will not be able to get on FaceTime and talk all day, because the revolution will make us unfriend each other.
We will not be disconnected from reality.
We will not be disconnected from the world.
We will not be disconnected.
We will not be disconnected.
We won’t be judged on the color of our skin and the stores we shop at.
The revolution will not star the latest comedians or Jay-Z holding hands with Beyonce or Blue or playing GTA on the PS4.
We will not be disconnected,
we will not be disconnected from this possible lovely world.

—DiMyri and Ky’Liyah
Grade 8
Samuel J. Green Charter School

Pizza Love

I wrote your name in the pizza box
But couldn’t throw it away
I missed us having pizza together
All the way from night till day
We used to fuss and fight
But yet I still say
I loved having pizza with you
It was the only way we could play
I wrote your name in the pizza box
And couldn’t throw it away.

—Ha’Sohn
Grade 8
ARISE Academy

Ode to My Love

You capture my heart with your glimmering eyes like
A person catching a bouquet. Sometimes you’re a pain in the ---
Bum, but most of the time you’re like a kid having the time
Of your life. You make me laugh, you make me smile,
When I’m in trouble or down, you always go the extra mile.
Your imperfections are what makes you you,
Your nagging, your fussing, your screaming
Like a referee calling a fail too.
But no matter what, I Love You.
No matter what you say or do.

—Maya
Grade 8
ARISE Academy

Who I Am

I emerged out my cocoon early
unable to fly
Began a new life
the apple of everyone’s eye
I am fast like a cheetah
intelligent like a lion
gentle as a lamb
and stubborn like a goat
With faith tall as a mountain
hope for people in the world
a thirst for knowledge
and the strength to endure
Outside I may seem meek
inside I know I’m strong
Wherever I’m myself
with confidence, I’ll know where I belong
and who I am.

—Brianne
Grade 7
Crocker College Prep

10th-12th Grade

Tired of Beauty

“Aurora my darling, we’re waiting”
is what I hear after my awakening,
putting on makeup
and the most beautiful dress,
but underneath all of this is a girl full of stress.

Maleficent has done me a favor
and woken me up from my eternal sleep,
but with all this hard work that’s
the one thing I should have decided to keep.

My hand waves daily, and we have
dinners every night.
But while we are at the dinner table,
it’s an irony that sleep is what I’m trying to fight.

Impatiently going to my room,
back to my dreams,
I know it may sound as weird as it seems,
But I have to get prepared for
another day that’s not so great
With a prince that my mother likes but wants me to date.

She wants me to marry, love,
and live happily ever after with him.
But I have a rude awakening for the both of them.
Sleeping Beauty is what they called me before
But now that I think of it, they should’ve called me snore.
Now back to sleep I’ll go.
I hope they leave me asleep,
because sleep’s the best thing I know.

—Myneisha
10th Grade
New Orleans Charter Science and Mathematics High School

Poem

Being crushed by the expectations of those around.
I am who I am, following the guidelines of what I should be.
Stuck in a never-ending loop of the same timeline.
Is there chance for me to be free. Be who I am or be who I want to become.
Follow my dreams and desires. But I can’t. A dream so far that
it’s unachievable. Struggling to find myself, holding onto the things
that keep me sane, holding onto a dream. A dream. A dream. A dream…
All it ever was was just a dream. A dream that we hope, no wish,
to have but the oppression of success weighs us down.
The typical stereotypes of us make it seem that we live a good life.
That we live just like whites…
But you’re wrong.
I know that this is sad but all I have to say is shout out to my friends
that bring me up and support me in what I wish to achieve
because we share the same dream that we know we can’t achieve.

—Teresa
Grade 10
New Orleans Charter Science and Mathematics High School

A Shout-Out from the Concerned

Here’s to the Caucasian folks that stopped and stared when I spoke.
Is it my brown skin that startled you?
Is it the kinkyness of my hair that has you staring?
Here’s to the young black boys who shamed the way my body’s made.
Do my short legs and thick thighs offend you?
Does the way I wear my clothes and how my cleavage shows?
Here’s to the people who have never heard a “black girl”
speak with so much class.
Is it because I used the words supercilious, incompetent,
illiterate when I was asked my perspective on today’s society?
Here’s to the people who saw the color of my skin, the way I dressed,
and the way my hips sway when I walk.
Here’s to the people who judged this book by its cover
and didn’t know I had a nurse for a mother and a veterinarian for a brother.
Ohhh, and shout out to the people who thought my father
wasn’t in my life, little do they know the man who went
in half to create me tucks his baby girl in every night.

—Jasmine
Grade 10
New Orleans Charter Science and Mathematics High School

The Deep Part of the Ocean

I am from the deep part of the ocean,
Where there’s sharks, fishes, and dolphins.
I am from a place where if you go too deep, it darkens.
I am from an environment that smells like gunpowder and marijuana.
I am from a home where there’s graduates, and life takers,
That will have your mind full of trauma.
I am from a society where people love guidance,
But there’s no one to guide them.
I am from a place where there’s no love lost or no love found.
I am from a state where blacks are called killers
And whites are called life savers.
I am from a country where people commit crimes for the love of money.
I am from a place where we struggle for freedom.

—Kevon
Age 17
Travis Hill School

The Deep Part of the Ocean

I am from the deep part of the ocean,
Where there’s sharks, fishes, and dolphins.
I am from a place where if you go too deep, it darkens.
I am from an environment that smells like gunpowder and marijuana.
I am from a home where there’s graduates, and life takers,
That will have your mind full of trauma.
I am from a society where people love guidance,
But there’s no one to guide them.
I am from a place where there’s no love lost or no love found.
I am from a state where blacks are called killers
And whites are called life savers.
I am from a country where people commit crimes for the love of money.
I am from a place where we struggle for freedom.

—Kevon
Age 17
Travis Hill School

Pizza Poetry Blog Post #7: Q&A With Darryl Reginelli

Happy pizza poetry day, everyone! To celebrate, we sat down with Darryl Reginelli, owner of Reginelli’s Pizzeria, to talk poetry, pizza, and creativity. 

Big Class: What was your path, and how did Reginelli’s come to be?

Darryl Reginelli: While I was in college at UNO, I started working at a back waiter at Arnaud’s. I worked there for 5 years in a number of different front of the house positions. I liked it so much that I decided I wanted to stay in the industry. I then got a job as the general manager at wine bar and bistro, and it really flourished from there. I found my creative outlet. I enjoy the hospitality and the creativity of the restaurant business.

BC: Can you talk more about the connection between hospitality and creativity?

DR: To me, it was the fun of exploring with food in the kitchen, and then bringing it out for people. My first restaurant was a full-service high-end Italian restaurant. It was called Reginelli’s Eating Gallery, and there was a working gallery of artists who put on shows throughout the year inside the restaurant. There was always an art and creative aspect to what I was doing.
When I sold that, I decided to use all the high-end ingredients, and turn it into a more accessible venue, like pizza. This was 20 years ago, and nobody used these ingredients on pizza. I took pancetta, prosciutto, roasted peppers, kalamata olives, and put them on pizza. I like to think that we introduced a higher-end pizza to New Orleans.
I was 25 when I started my first restaurant, and I was trying to create a place that my friends could enjoy. My goal then, was to not have an entree over $10. Now with the pizza, we really serve everyone from one-year-old babies to 99-year-old grandparents, and it’s still a really great family environment.

BC: I love that you were able to make those ingredients accessible to everyone. That really correlates with poetry, because some people find it hard to get into if you don’t understand stanzas or rhyme schemes. One of the great things about Pizza Poetry, is the students can write whatever they want, and everyone gains access to it.

DR: Yeah, it makes people laugh, and it makes people think. And it’s an interesting way of expressing yourself, whether it’s comical or satire, or even political.

BC: Can you talk about collaboration? I’m sure when you were building your idea for a restaurant, you had a team to bounce ideas off of.

DR: The first Reginelli’s that we built at State and Magazine was very hands-on. We made all the tables, we made the bar. I had a lot of great friends that helped translate our ideas to something tangible.

BC: Did you enjoy writing or reading when you were a kid?

DR: I struggled in school, and I have dyslexia which would slow me down. But my proudest writings were the things that I connected with, and when I wrote about something that was real to me. Those were the best papers that I liked to write—the ones where I was being open and honest, and really truthful, and writing about something that I cared about.

BC: Definitely. Do you have any advice for some of our young writers? How can students bring their ideas of what they want to be into reality?

DR: I would always get these ideas that my family would say were crazy—like, you can’t open a restaurant, you don’t have any money, why don’t you just work in a restaurant? Well, that wasn’t my idea. I had goals, and different things that I wanted to do. And even if they’re small or big, don’t laugh at your goals or get scared to try something. If you never try, you’ll always wonder if you could’ve achieved it. Use your instincts, and if you want to do something, don’t be afraid to try.

BC: So what’s next for you, and for Reginelli’s?

DR: We will continue to expand the Reginelli’s Pizzeria. And, just this year, I decided I want to try a new concept out too. So, I’ve got an idea about a new concept I’d like to introduce to New Orleans. I think it could be fun, and it could give us some more opportunities to grow. So, I think we’re going to start a new concept this year.

BC: Exciting! And no previews of what it’s going to be?

DR: It’s not all finished, but I’ve got a big part of it in my head already. It’s too soon to talk about it yet though.

BC: Gotcha--you’re in the brainstorming and drafting phase, and you’re not quite ready to be published yet. Well, do you have any questions for us?

DR: No, I just think it’s great that you’re able to put the Pizza Poetry out there. It’s fun, and it shows all ages of creativity: the humor, the sarcasm, and what’s in people’s minds. It’s a lot of fun, and it makes people think. We enjoy being a part of it.

 

Pizza Poetry Blog Post #6: Prose Poems

Teachers: Want to incorporate Pizza Poetry into your classroom, but not sure where to get started? From now until April 7th, we'll be posting bi-weekly poetry writing prompts here on our blog! Remember, anyone ages 6-18 in Greater New Orleans can submit poetry to be published on a pizza box. And don't forget: the deadline to submit poetry is April 7th.

Prose Poetry

A prose poem is a poem written in sentences. Often, it appears as a block of text and resembles a paragraph more than a typical metered poem. A prose poem however, is not a story, focusing more on  the characteristics of poetry, such as poetic meter, language play, and images.

Prose poems first appeared in 19th Century France as an act of rebellion. Poets like Charles Baudelaire and Aloysius Bertrand wanted to protest the predominance of the Alexandrine metered line and the typical content that followed it. Breaking out of metered form, they wrote in a block of text that resembled prose, but behaved like poetry.

Many prose poems are written in second person, meaning the poet is addressing somebody or speaking to them.The second person uses the pronouns “you,” “your,” and “yours.” Often second-person prose poems resemble letters or postcards.

Below are two examples of prose poems written in second person. Now, it’s time to try writing your own prose poem. Think about WHO you want to write your prose poem to and what you want to say!  Remember, you’re still writing a poem so imagery, devices and rhythm are important!


from Citizen, I

By Claudia Rankine

A woman you do not know wants to join you for lunch. You are visiting her campus. In the café you both order the Caesar salad. This overlap is not the beginning of anything because she immediately points out that she, her father, her grandfather, and you, all attended the same college. She wanted her son to go there as well, but because of affirmative action or minority something—she is not sure what they are calling it these days and weren’t they supposed to get rid of it?—her son wasn’t accepted. You are not sure if you are meant to apologize for this failure of your alma mater’s legacy program; instead you ask where he ended up. The prestigious school she mentions doesn’t seem to assuage her irritation. This exchange, in effect, ends your lunch. The salads arrive.

A Supermarket in California

Allen Ginsberg, 1926 - 1997

What thoughts I have of you tonight, Walt Whitman, for I walked down the sidestreets under the trees with a headache self-conscious looking at the full moon.
 In my hungry fatigue, and shopping for images, I went into the neon fruit supermarket, dreaming of your enumerations!
 What peaches and what penumbras!  Whole families shopping at night!  Aisles full of husbands!  Wives in the avocados, babies in the tomatoes!—and you, García Lorca, what were you doing down by the watermelons?

 I saw you, Walt Whitman, childless, lonely old grubber, poking among the meats in the refrigerator and eyeing the grocery boys.
 I heard you asking questions of each: Who killed the pork chops?  What price bananas?  Are you my Angel?
 I wandered in and out of the brilliant stacks of cans following you, and followed in my imagination by the store detective.
 We strode down the open corridors together in our solitary fancy tasting artichokes, possessing every frozen delicacy, and never passing the cashier.

 Where are we going, Walt Whitman?  The doors close in a hour.  Which way does your beard point tonight?
 (I touch your book and dream of our odyssey in the supermarket and feel absurd.)
 Will we walk all night through solitary streets?  The trees add shade to shade, lights out in the houses, we’ll both be lonely.
 Will we stroll dreaming of the lost America of love past blue automobiles in driveways, home to our silent cottage?
 Ah, dear father, graybeard, lonely old courage-teacher, what America did you have when Charon quit poling his ferry and you got out on a smoking bank and stood watching the boat disappear on the black waters of Lethe?

—Berkeley, 1955

Welcome Newest Board Members!

Rai Bolden is a proud transplant to the city of New Orleans.  A veteran teacher raised by an artistic mother, stoic grandmother and a impenetrable village of aunties, uncles and friends in Memphis, Tennessee – home of the blues and rock and roll!
Rai graduated from Hampton University in Virginia with a degree in Marketing and received her Masters in Teaching and Learning from Louisiana College in Pineville.  A certified ELA teacher with over 17 years of experience in traditional public and charter schools in major bustling U.S. cities from Houston, Texas to Harlem, NY, Rai has spent her career as a public servant.
A proponent of equitable and competitive educational opportunities for all children, Rai has worked on the front lines in schools promoting education for the whole child and has passionately advocated on behalf of families to make schools accountable to the communities they serve.  Rai created and directed an in-school Arts Program at KIPP STAR in Harlem – a model for programs across the network.  She has made teaching children about their history a cornerstone of her teaching philosophy and is a staunch supporter of culturally relevant pedagogy across all academic areas.   
One of her greatest passions is writing, and it is her daily goal to make words come alive for the children whom she teaches.  “I teach in schools in communities like the communities that nourished me. It is my belief and duty to serve children and families to aid in developing strong thinkers, passionate advocates and creative leaders who are also dedicated to reaching back and building up!  I am a Big Class cheerleader because it is a resource that encourages each child it touches to become his/her own movement.”


Baty Landis is a New Orleans native who is passionate about writing, and especially functional writing: She wrote and edited travel guides for Fodor's Travel Publications and Lonely Planet for 10 years. Baty holds degrees in Music from UC Berkeley and Princeton University and has worked in the arts in New Orleans for a decade, including through YAYA, Inc., SilenceIsViolence, and Sound Cafe in the Marigny. She is excited to be a part of Big Class's new capital project to create a Youth Writing Center in the Seventh Ward and hopes the Center will become a hub of creative energies serving all of New Orleans. Baty currently lives in Mid-City with her husband and three children and is very involved as a volunteer at her children's school, Morris Jeff Community School.

Volunteer of the Month: April 2017

Congrats to Megan Braden-Perry, our April Volunteer of the Month! This spring, Megan lead a food writing workshop in the Writers' Room at Sylvanie Williams College Prep. She brought delicious smells of BBQ sauce to the Writers' Room, and her class wrote a memorable ode to pizza (and feet-za), and learned to cook simple, healthy dishes. Thanks for all your hard work, Megan!

meganbradenperry.png

What first brought you to Big Class?
Kelly Harris-DeBerry told Doug Keller about me, and how I had some connections with restaurants. He had me contact a few for Dark and Stormy Night, and later he told me a bit about the program. Later, he asked if I'd be able to volunteer, and I was. It was perfect because I get to choose what I want to teach and because it's not a huge time commitment. 

What keeps you coming back?
Kids are just so funny! In the cookbook writing/healthy cooking class I taught, I learned the kids at Sylvanie F. Williams love wings and Magnolia Specials more than anything!

What are some skills you have that help you out at Big Class?
I've always loved children and teaching, so that helps. Also I'm very type A in life, but not in the classroom. I just want the kids to learn and have fun. As long as everyone is learning, happy and safe, I'm glad.

What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced at Big Class?
The only challenge I faced was when I had to tell kids who weren't signed up for the program that they would have to be good in class and wait until the next session to hopefully be selected by their teachers. "Y'all going to Big Class? Can I come? Hmph, I wanna go to Big Class!" The students and all the grownups at the school are amazing.

What are some great projects you’ve helped with? Tell us the story behind one of them if you can.
My idea was to make a healthy cookbook with recipes kids could actually cook themselves. When you're in 3rd grade, you want to help at home and you want to do things yourself. I remember being that age and trying to cook, but having trouble with the cookbooks in the house. I knew how to make scrambled eggs, but that was it. Hopefully grownups will buy this cookbook for kids, so that they can learn how to cook healthy dishes. There are even some amazing gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan and nut-free dishes!

What are you up to when you’re not volunteering with us?
My second book, Crescent City Snow: The Ultimate Guide to New Orleans Snowball Stands, is out now. I have an Instagram account for it (www.instagram.com/crescentcitysnow) where I go to even more snowball stands, some as far as Houston! For the book I went to 50 stands and interviewed 50 people, so I've been trying to catch up with all of them. I'm finally graduating from Dillard in May and my son turns 3 in June. Also, I'll be doing TeachNOLA this summer and starting my creative nonfiction MFA coursework at UNO this fall. I'm very blessed and incredibly thankful.

Pizza Poetry Blog Post #5: Awake At Night

Teachers: Want to incorporate Pizza Poetry into your classroom, but not sure where to get started? From now until April 7th, we'll be posting bi-weekly poetry writing prompts here on our blog! Remember, anyone ages 6-18 in Greater New Orleans can submit poetry to be published on a pizza box. And don't forget: the deadline to submit poetry is April 7th.

Lesson Plan: Awake at Night (7th-12th grade)

Hanging Fire
BY AUDRE LORDE

I am fourteen
and my skin has betrayed me   
the boy I cannot live without   
still sucks his thumb
in secret
how come my knees are
always so ashy
what if I die
before morning
and momma's in the bedroom   
with the door closed.

I have to learn how to dance   
in time for the next party   
my room is too small for me   
suppose I die before graduation   
they will sing sad melodies   
but finally
tell the truth about me
There is nothing I want to do   
and too much
that has to be done
and momma's in the bedroom   
with the door closed.

Nobody even stops to think   
about my side of it
I should have been on Math Team   
my marks were better than his   
why do I have to be
the one
wearing braces
I have nothing to wear tomorrow   
will I live long enough
to grow up
and momma's in the bedroom   
with the door closed.

  1. Read Hanging Fire together as a class. Then ask students to read the poem silently a couple more times.

  2. Brainstorm both concrete and abstract things that keep students awake at night worrying. Encourage them to list things that might seem trivial (how come my knees are always so ashy) to grander things (will I live long enough to grow up?)

    Depending on the comfort level and culture of the classroom, this brainstorm might be more fruitful if done individually.
  3. Now encourage students to write their own poems modeled after Hanging Fire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Email us at pizzapoetry@bigclass.org to let us know how the workshop went, and submit your students' poems. Are you especially proud of any of the poems? Let us know and we'll feature them on this blog! Click here to learn more about the Pizza Poetry Project.

Pizza Poetry Blog Post #4: Odes

Teachers: Want to incorporate Pizza Poetry into your classroom, but not sure where to get started? From now until April 7th, we'll be posting bi-weekly poetry writing prompts here on our blog! Remember, anyone ages 6-18 in Greater New Orleans can submit poetry to be published on a pizza box. And don't forget: the deadline to submit poetry is April 7th.

Lesson Plan: Odes (1st-5th grade)

An Ode is a poem that admires something ordinary or shows the importance of something that is usually overlooked. An Ode does not have to (but can!) rhyme. Usually, an ode has detailed descriptions and observations. There are many ways to approach writing an ode, the most important thing is praising the object (or person). Here are four different odes praising the same object: PIZZA!

Oh Pizza!
Sausage and onions,
And deep mozzerella,
Ground beef and mushrooms
Make life vita bella;
Pizza sauce, hot cheese
That comes off in strings,
These are among my favorite things!
-John Bliven Morin

Ode To Pizza
You come in different shapes and sizes
Round or Square
O you look so fair
Sitting in a box
While I watch Fox
Whenever I'm sad
You make me glad
Your colors shine so bright
In the summer night
Whenever I'm around you
You make me glad that I've found you
I love you pizza
-Allyah, age 10

Ode to Pizza
No matter if you're from Chicago or NYC
Pizza is appreciated everywhere, ode to thee
In the end there's no contest, anyone will agree
No matter what form, you're flawless like Queen B.
-Anonymous

Ode to Pizza
Pizza is my favorite snack,
Now what do you think of that.
Crust so warm and soft and chewy,
Cheese so tasty, scrumptious, gooey.
Hot in a box or on my plate,
Either way I just can’t wait,
To get my hands upon a slice,
To taste it now would be so nice.
Like nectar from the gods of old,
It tastes so good I’ll eat it cold.
When life is hard and I get down,
When on my face I wear a frown,
Only Pizza makes it right,
Now quench my raving appetite.
Restore my faith in all that’s true,
With a dose of cheesy goo,
Give me Pizza, give it now,
If you don’t I don’t know how,
I’ll ever live in harmony,
Without my Pizza ecstasy.
But where to get my Pizza snack,
I’ll tell you where, just where it’s at.
To Round Table you should go,
If you didn’t already know.
To feast upon their luscious pies
For they take Pizza to new highs
I love Pizza, that’s a fact,
Now what do you think of that.
-Michael Sykes


Now it’s your turn:

1. Brainstorm what you could write about.

Think about things you see and experience everyday that you don’t usually notice.
For example, Shoes, Teachers, Grandma, Friendship, Trees, Pencil, Love, Custodians, Hairbrush, Shoes, Computer.

2. Pick your topic and brainstorm why it is important.

Describe your object:
-What it does
-Why it’s important
-What would happen without it
-How you feel about it


3. Write your poem. If you get stuck go back and study the examples.

4. Share it with us!

Don't forget to submit the final poems by April 7th!


Email us at pizzapoetry@bigclass.org to let us know how the workshop went, and submit your students' poems. Are you especially proud of any of the haikus? Let us know and we'll feature them on this blog! Click here to learn more about the Pizza Poetry Project.

Events: À Propos with Big Class and The Stacks Bookstore

Join us next week in conversation with À Propos and The Stacks Bookstore.


Wednesday, April 5, 2017 - 6:00pm
The Stacks Bookstore
inside the Contemporary Arts Center
900 Camp Street

À Propos is a series of events that will be featuring each month a different non-profit organization based in the New Orleans metro-area. During that evening, an organization will present and share their history, milestones, anecdotes, and upcoming projects with the audience. Learn more here.

 

Pizza Poetry Blog Post #3: Nature Haikus

Teachers: Want to incorporate Pizza Poetry into your classroom, but not sure where to get started? From now until April 7th, we'll be posting bi-weekly poetry writing prompts here on our blog! Remember, anyone ages 6-18 in Greater New Orleans can submit poetry to be published on a pizza box. And don't forget: the deadline to submit poetry is April 7th.

H A I K U S

A Haiku poetry is a short, centuries-old form of Japanese poetry.
A haiku is three lines and 17 syllables total.

The first line contains 5 syllables
the second line has 7
the final line has 5 syllables.

A good Haiku is like a photo that captures the essence of what’s happening, often connecting two seemingly unrelated thing. With just a few words, they call attention to an observation and in effect say, "Look at this" or, "Think about this."

If possible take your students outside and ask them to record their observations in complete sentences. If you are unable to take your students outside, photographs or videos from nature will do. Don’t be afraid to use vivid descriptions and personifications.


Examples:

  1. The tree branch shakes in the wind and tickles the grass

  2. Each blade of grass pokes the soles of my feet

  3. I saw ducks swimming in a pond during a rainstorm

  4. I noticed the first buds on tree branches in your backyard

Now you have to pare the sentence down so it still describes the scene while inviting the reader to see what you saw.  

For example:

I saw ducks swimming in a pond during a rainstorm.
Sudden spring storm—
a family of ducks paddles
around the deserted lake.


Email us at pizzapoetry@bigclass.org to let us know how the workshop went, and submit your students' poems. Are you especially proud of any of the haikus? Let us know and we'll feature them on this blog! Click here to learn more about the Pizza Poetry Project.