On March 21st, more than 1,000 students from over 30 countries celebrated World Poetry Day in the PenPal Schools Global Poetry Contest. Students wrote and shared original poetry, then voted for their favorite poems written by their peers!
Students poets came from countries like Somalia, Thailand, Argentina, and the United States. No matter where students live, poetry allows them to share their thoughts and perspectives with the world. In the Global Poetry Contest, students wrote poetry about history, the environment, sports, pets, and beloved family members. Their poems expressed emotions like grief, love, fear, anticipation, and gratitude. Join us in congratulating our 2020 Global Poetry Contest winners!
While many poems received an impressive number of votes, three poems won the contest by receiving the most votes from their peers and unanimous recognition by the PenPal Schools team. Congratulations to the winners of the Global Poetry Contest: Insha from India, and Aedan and Kaylyn from the United States!
Insha is a second grade student from the city of Bengaluru in southern India. After meeting PenPals from the United States, Pakistan, Denmark, and India, Insha chose to write a poem about the coronavirus pandemic to share with her classmates and friends on PenPal Schools.
We are virus,
We are dangerous,
We are scary,
We are notorious,
We are so many.
I am Coronavirus,
Covid-19 is also my name,
I spread fast,
I [was] born in China,
Wow! I am traveling [to] all countries.
I am nipahvirus,
I live in bats,
Bats eat fruits,
People eat that fruit,
Hurray! I made them sick.
I am dengue virus,
I live in mosquitoes,
Mosquitoes like human blood,
Mosquitoes like dirty water,
Hahaha! We are super strong.
We can't attack people who wash hands,
We don't like people who drink more water,
We don't like people who are clean,
We can't make a virus earth.
Students from around the world love how Insha’s poem relates to an important topic that many people are already talking about. The PenPal Schools team loves how Insha’s poem uses personification to imagine the virus as a character who can talk and share feelings.
In addition to writing poetry, Insha enjoys mathematics. Insha explained, “I like maths because I love numbers, addition, subtraction and it is challenging.” She also enjoys drawing, painting, and karate. Congratulations, Insha, on being a 2020 Poetry Contest winner!
Aedan is a seventh grade student from the United States. Aedan wrote a poem inspired by a prominent theme in the novel Refugee, by Alan Gratz. Aedan explains that his poem "is written in a non-rhyming free-verse style [with] four syllables per line."
When he’s not writing poetry and meeting PenPals in different parts of the world, Aedan enjoys swimming competitively, playing video games and cooking. When asked where he’d like to travel if given the chance to explore the world, Aedan explains, “I would love to go to Italy because of all the amazing food that they have there, and it was where my ancestors came from.” Thanks, Aedan for being a PenPal Star!
Our third PenPal Star and Global Poetry contest winner is Kaylyn, a 6th grade student from the United States. Kaylyn’s favorite subject in school is writing because when writing she, “can be creative with my words.” Kaylyn also likes performing arts and painting. It may come as no surprise, that Kaylyn’s winning poem is about the Greek God Pan, a god associated with music, the natural world, and poetry!
The Great God Pan
Students from around the world as well as the PenPal Schools team love how Kaylyn’s poem uses an ancient myth to help start conversations about the environment.
When asked where in the world she would like to travel if given the chance, Kaylyn replied that she would like to visit “Rome to visit the Coliseum. I like Roman mythology.” Thanks, Kaylyn, for bringing your knowledge of ancient mythology to the 2020 Global Poetry Contest!
Congratulations to the winners of the 2020 Global Poetry Contest, and congratulations to the hundreds of other students who submitted inspiring works of poetry! And while the 2020 Global Poetry Contest is now behind us, students are invited to share and discuss poetry all year long in the 'World of Poetry' PenPal topic! We can’t wait to see more thoughtful writing as students from around the world continue to connect and learn with PenPals!