Letters of Address in the Circles of Influence
Eighth grade Language Arts teacher David Oraskovich taught a week long lesson on Poems of Address. Poems of Address are written from one person to another addressing some unfinished business between the poet and the person addressed. After reviewing the circle of influence in the Olweus model of bullying each student was asked to choose either the bully, victim, bystander or one of the people assisting the bully and write the poem of address to them. After writing, revising, and sharing their poetry in class twelve of the poems were chosen to be shared at our annual school assembly celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday. The Junior High Student Council Officers led the assembly with students in grades 7 - 12 in attendance. A description of the person in the circle of influence who was being addressed was read and then the author of the poem shared his or her poem. There were tears in the audience. Mr. Oraskovich integrated the lesson with Computer Skills. The Computer Skills teacher will have the students use their skills to publish the poems on a poster. We are working with a printer in town to make the poems into posters to be posted in our school in the upcoming school year. The assembly ended with a video of pictures of students in our building with Katie Perry's "Firework." The music says, "Baby you 're a Firework, come on show them what you're worth" exemplifying the importance of all students.
Mrs. Jeanette Swanson