Your Students Have Talent: United Colours of Harlem

Posted by Speakeasy News > Sunday 24 November 2019 >


We always love to read students' work. Here are some poems pupils wrote as their final task in a sequence from Shine Bright 2e: File 1 United Colours of Harlem.

In this sequence,  in Axe 3  Le village, le quartier, la ville, students discovered Harlem and considered what makes it such an inspiring neighbourhood. As their final task, they were asked to write  and recite a short poem about
Harlem for a  poetry competition celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Harlem Renaissance.

Here are some great entries by pupils at Lycée Jean Jaurès, Châtenay-Malabry (92).

Ambre:
Today I come back in the city
I am walking in the neighborhood
It doesn’t bring back memories of my childhood
There are many new modern buildings, such a pity!

There are a lot of white people, it’s a surprise,
But they are the reason Harlem as to modernize
The borough is less colorful
I think it is not beautiful.

My city has become the city of shops.
Even so, I find Harlem top.
When I am walking, I just see huge buildings.

Where are the black people?
Where is the culture of Harlem?
She is left with them.

Jade:
In the new Harlem it is not beautiful
It is not colourful
There are a lot of new buildings
And I can’t see any paintings
Where is my class of hip-hop?
They preferred to build a new shop.

In the ne Harlem it is not beautiful,
It is not colourful
This is my district
With nothing of artistic
I am looking for the flowers
And I am counting the hours.
Now I walk
And I talk for Harlem, I talk.
It is a success
But it is not flawless

Alexis:
I remember this amazing place
With this beautiful landscape
Am I always in my city?
Now it’s full of shops and modernity
I don’t recognize my neighbourhood
I see only an area with malls and fast-food
I remember this special feeling
To see a colourful brownstone building
I want to see once again
Musicians, pianists, poets of Harlem
Today I am sad to say,
This mood may never return one day
Sometimes I cry
Because the heart of my district is going to die.

Alexis

 

 

 

 



Webpicks Useful websites and online tools for classroom use
> Love in Harlem: Teaching Tools
Downloadable resources ready to use in class
> James Baldwin: Love in Harlem
> Activist New York