Blackout Poetry

I am about to introduce Blackout poetry to my class for student teaching. Personally, I have been meaning to do this for a while. So when I decided I wanted to teach a lesson on poetry, this was one of the first things that came to mind as I was coming up with activities. This works well with my lesson as I am not only teaching the students to differentiate between poetry and prose but I am also teaching them to identify literary devices and the ways they help us understand text a little better. I was going to do this the old fashioned way with newspaper clippings and permanent markers but then I suddenly came across this cool interactive feature on the New York Times website.

Here’s the link if you would like to try it out: Searching for Poetry in Prose

Screenshot (30)

Aside

Day 1

It feels weird not waking up at 6:30 in the morning and getting ready for the day. I woke up at 8:55 am and thought to myself…’Mrs. Goldberg is out there on the black pavement getting them right now…oh wait…it’s raining. They are probably in the gym waiting for her to come pick them up.’ The other day, a student was asking me, “You’re just joking with us right? You’re not really leaving?” That just broke my heart to pieces 💔 😦

It’s going to take some time getting used to it. Every time I look up at the clock, I think about what they are doing, as I have the class schedule etched into my mind. Without even thinking, I think about it. It’s 12 p.m., they just went to specials. It’s 1:15, they’re doing math. It’s 2:23…they’ve started Daily 5.

I wonder what the school looks like without all of the student teachers. Did it change? Does it look different?

Self-reflection during Ramadan 

There are two ways of being tired of eating during Ramadan:

  • One is when you wake up in the middle of night during Seheri and try to shove down as much food as you possibly can so you can keep your fast; even though just four or five hours ago you ate a full course meal.
  • And the other one is at Iftar when you’re full after two bites and can’t eat another morsel, despite the fact that the stomach has been crying for food for the past 16 hours.

Both times you end up just looking at the food more than you actually start eating it.
Not because the food doesn’t look appetizing but because both the mind and body are too tired. The mind is too sleepy and the body is just not hungry. As I stare at my food, there are a lot of things going in my head. At least that is what it looks like if someone were to see me. Maybe I’ll tell you one day. That is, if I ever can remember what in the world I was thinking about.

“Song Unsung” by Rabindranath Tagore

Right now, I am struggling a bit to place my thoughts onto paper. I just came across one of Rabindranath Tagore’s poems that describes exactly how I am feeling. I couldn’t have described it any other way.
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The song that I came to sing remains unsung to this day.

I have spent my days in stringing and in unstringing my instrument.

The time has not come true, the words have not been rightly set;
only there is the agony of wishing in my heart.

The blossom has not opened; only the wind is sighing by.

I have not seen his face, nor have I listened to his voice;
only I have heard his gentle footsteps from the road before my house.

The livelong day has passed in spreading his seat on the floor;
but the lamp has not been lit and I cannot ask him into my house.

I live in the hope of meeting with him; but this meeting is not yet.