Writing the moment
Sam and Greg from Nimble Fish Arts share a creative writing activity which is easily translatable to many classroom and staff room environments
WHAT YOU'LL NEED FOR THIS SESSION: some blank paper and something to write with
- In these challenging times, I feel…
- Right now, the world seems…
- What I really need right now is…
- What’s challenging for me today is...
- My professional practice these days feels...
- Life right now is very...
Greg's freewrite example:
Prose poetry example:
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyle
As written in the book:
“Oh, I’m tired of hearing about Father’s job,” said Bruno. “That’s all we ever hear about, if you ask me. Father’s job this and Father’s job that. Well if Father’s job means that we have to move away from our house and the sliding banister and my three best friends for life, then I think Father should think twice about his job, don’t you?”
As a prose poem:
Oh, I’m tired of hearing about Father’s job,
That’s all I ever hear about.
Father’s job this
Father’s job that.
If Father’s job means
That we have to move away from
The sliding banister
My three best friends for life,
Then I think Father
Should think twice about his job,
'Pulling Taffy' – Greg's example poem:
like a Pharoah’s tomb,
Deep within my brain,
As yet inaccessible,
It feels like…
Has shaken loose.
And when it happens
Reflections & questions
- What did your ‘raw’ freewrite reveal to you about your experience of life and work right now? Did anything surprise you?
- How did you feel about this particular way of writing?
- What starting prompt are you most interested in exploring, and why? It could be one from our list, or your own.
- Consider experimenting with the length of time you write for and notice what’s different. How would it be to freewrite for one minute, or 10 minutes?
- Think about the words you chose for your prose poem and the way you chose to arrange them. What stands out for you and why?
- Are there particular words whose qualities feel important to you right now? Think about the sounds of words, how they look on the page or screen, what feelings or memories they evoke.
- How was writing through your challenges different than other ways of expressing or dealing with them?
- How might you use these activities with colleagues, friends, family or young people? It might be different with each group.
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