The Telling Roomhttps://www.flipsnack.com/TheTellingRoom/
The Telling Room is a nonprofit writing center in Portland, Maine, dedicated to the idea that children and young adults are natural storytellers. Focused on young writers ages 6 to 18, we seek to build confidence, strengthen literacy skills, and provide real audiences for our students. We believe that the power of creative expression can change our communities and prepare our youth for future success.
During the midwinter, In January 2013, Portland’s nonprofit writing center for young writers, The Telling Room, came to Manchester School in Windham to wake up our sluggish brains. Their talented artists and writing professionals led fascinating workshops that jumpstarted our powers of observation, improved our description skills, and engaged our creative thinking. This book is an exhibit of 177 creative minds at work.
In the spring of 2013, writers from The Telling Room in Portland visited fourth and fifth graders at Skillin Elementary to grow some stories. Through a series of focused workshops over the course of two months, the TR writing coaches encouraged the young storysmiths to play with words and be bold with their ideas. They practiced writing fascinating new characters and places, invented energetic dialogue, and learned to slow down and pay attention to the details along the way. This book is a collection of the students’ work; some pieces are polished, others are still rough around the edges, but all sing with the energy and spirit of birds in the morning.
For two weeks this spring, I had the pleasure of leading a poetry workshop in Kelly Fernald’s classroom at the Fred P. Hall School in Portland, along with The Telling Room’s Writer-in-Residence Patty Hagge and all-star volunteer Marion Knox. For two weeks this spring, as we read and wrote poems together, wandered through the woods near Jewel Falls, held a poetry slam, and learned about rhythm by beating our names on drums, I was reminded by these students how paying attention to what’s around us, being silly, and asking big questions all play a role in making poems. You’ll find all this and more in their poems. --Gibson Fay-LeBlanc, May 2013