Spoken Word Poetry

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This activity stimulates creative reflection on the working process and can be easily adopted to reflect on or discuss any given topic.

Time 1,5 hours

Material room, paper and pens

Group Size 20 people

Created By Diana Chobanyan, Tino Rasche

Keywords Poetry, Creative reflection


Related:

Goal

The aim of the activity is to introduce the tool of Spoken Word poetry and use it for the purpose of reflection.

Steps

Stage 1

  1. Create a nice environment that fosters creativity.
  2. Sit in a circle and ask everyone to have piece of paper and pen at hand.
  3. Start with asking everyone to write the first adjective that comes to their mind when thinking of their project. Let them write that one word on a piece of paper.
  4. Ask everyone to pass their papers to the right (clockwise).
  5. Then they have to write their first association in response to the word they see on the paper.
  6. Repeat this 4-5 times.
  7. Later they have to write a character in response to the question “who?”.
  8. Next they have to write a place in response to the question “where?”.
  9. Lastly they answer to the question “how?”.
  10. Make sure that by the time you ask the last question everybody’s paper return’s to them.
  11. Later give them 2-3 minutes to read through all the words and think of their project.

Stage 2

  1. Ask them to write the alphabet of the language in which the activity is being carried on, preferably their mother tongue to make it easier for themselves.
  2. Ask to write one word that starts with each letter on the alphabet.
  3. Tell them that this is going to be their toolbox for the final stage of the activity and pass to the next stage.

Stage 3

  1. Ask everyone to think of three things that come to their mind when thinking about their projects.
  2. Give them 30 seconds for this.
  3. Ask to not be selective: it can be anything, the key is they don’t have to think too hard.
  4. Now give them 10 seconds to choose one of those 3 things and write it down.
  5. Here they have the topic or maybe even the title of their poem.

Stage 4

  1. Give everybody 20 minutes to write their poems.
  2. Tell them that rhyme and rhythm don’t matter. It can be spoken word poetry. Basically, they can write anything that they would like to perform. However, it is not necessary to ask them to perform if they don’t feel like it.

Variation

If there is a spoken word poem you like and which can serve as an introduction to the topic, by all means, feel free to start the session by performing if for the participants of by playing its recording for them.

Experience

People tend to think that writing poetry is the exclusive right of the so-called "gifted people" and they cannot do it right. So you may encourage them by reading samples of Spoken Word Poetry which is not rhymed and can be easily written by one of them.