East Rockaway Hosts Poetry Madness Competition

East Rockaway Hosts Poetry Madness Competition Pic 1

Eight East Rockaway Junior-Senior High School students recited their own original poetry in front of their peers during the school’s annual Poetry Madness competition.

The competition began in March in conjunction with March Madness, with all students in grades 9-12 submitting a poem for inclusion in the contest. Teachers encouraged students to focus on opportunity or other topics in their work. The theme of opportunity relates to the district’s strategic plan, which aims to increase opportunities that foster academic, social and emotional achievement amongst students.

Each week throughout the month, teachers from the English department reviewed the poems and narrowed down the submissions to include the ones they felt were best. Poems were judged based on style, meaning and whether the student’s writing evoked emotion.

On Poetry Day, which was held on April 28, the top eight student-poets were asked to read their original poem during an assembly. Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum, Instruction and Technology John Piccarella and former teacher and contest creator Ginny Sievers judged the final leg of the competition. The judges selected the top four winning poems. Those students received Amazon gift cards.   

Congratulations to the top eight students Abigail Calabrese, Katharine Calabrese, Caitlin Cassini, Sarah Donnelly, Stephen Millar, Jessica Mistretta, Gabriella Padiernos and Danish Yahya. Padiernos was the overall winner of the competition. Her poem “Special Times” will be displayed in the English Department.  

To read the winning poems, click here