At my last school we had to have a partner. So this girl, her skin was way lighter than me. She had to work with me but she didn’t want to.
Then she said out loud, “I don’t wanna sit by some rezzy girl.”
Shortly after that an alien came and got her. The aliens took control of her mind. She now liked me!
The alien was a protective spirit. She was passed down to me by my ancestors. I guess you could say I inherited her from my mother. I would summon her when I needed an extra hand.
I do not appreciate being called a rezzy girl. It felt negative. The rez girls are powerful!
by Cristeta Boarini, 826 MSP
In this lesson, students explore the genres of historical and speculative fiction before they reimagine a time they felt powerless…
by Shayne Williams
Discover what one student experiences when they tuck their phone away for a whole day.
by Sabrin, Grade 9, 826 MSP
In this letter from the Essential Words lesson, 9th grader Sabrin discusses how she feels both happy and sad, and thanks nurses nationwide for bringing her peace through their work.
by Fahima Dahir, 826 MSP
A poem about the strength and limitations of language and shared culture.
by Luciana, Grade 10, 826 MSP
In this letter from the Essential Words lesson, a sophomore at South High School in Minneapolis gives thanks to Children’s Hospital employees.
by Reuben & Giselle, 826CHI
Two students write to each other about where they came from, what they love, and a few mishaps along the way in an exchange of letters.
by Elizabeth W, 826 Valencia
Even though we may look different, we remain united with one another.
by Sharoya Bracey, 826NYC
In this memoir, the narrator recounts the struggle of being the bigger person in a very small space.
by Tala, Grade 10, 826 MSP
In this letter from the Essential Words lesson, 10th grader Tala asks essential workers what motivates them to keep going during these difficult times, offering her own views on hope for the future.
by William, 826LA
A teen discovers the power of books to transport him to another world, and shares his excitement about becoming a published author.
by Kevin G, 826 Valencia
This narrative calls us to see the world through the perspectives of others.
by Cindy, 826LA
A student compellingly argues that immigrants deserve respect and to be free of discrimination.
by Maggie Munday Odom, Kailua, HI
This poem personifies Earth as a mother coping with the brutalities of climate change.
by Anthony, 826DC
This poem gives insight to what it's like growing up Black in America.
by Justis Porter, age 16, 826 Boston
A neighborhood ode filled with sights and sounds of the poet's street.
by Christopher, Bryan, & Jahir, 826CHI
In an exchange of letters, three students across one city share stories about where they came from and the places that matter most.
by Jason, 826michigan
Making bottle flipping look like child's play, this piece outlines rules for the new, competitive Fantasy Sport "Pencils".
by Calvin, 826michigan
A laugh-out-loud personal narrative about a crush. Has your heart ever beat so fast it might get a speeding ticket and a $500 fine?
by Isabella, 826NYC
This poet rejects judgement based on the color of one’s skin.
by Johnny Vasquez, 826 MSP
A family interview reveals a mother's painful past and shines a light on her persistence.
by Jahruwach Hamilton, 826NYC
In this rousing poem, a student asserts her strength and worth as a woman.
by Kalyn Jackson, 826 New Orleans
Through this short story, Kalyn explores ideas of home and change in an altered world.
by Aniah, 826 MSP
A student is lifted up by the dance of her ancestors.
by Sian Laing
When Instagram becomes an unsightly battlefield.
by Joanne H, 826 Valencia
In this poem, a student’s experiences in two countries meld together as she seeks out her true home.
by Charles, 826 MSP
A student reflects on his life, stemming from the life of his father.
by Ryker, 826michigan
Liner notes that showcase the meaning and musicality of the Jimmy Ruffin song “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted.”
by Yazmine-Gizelle, 826DC
This poem uses a fundamental poetry technique, repetition, to share the writer's future plans.
by Caroline, 826 Valencia
A student explores U.S. soccer player Megan Rapinoe’s decision to kneel in protest during the national anthem.
by Pretty S, 826 Valencia
Glimpse into the mind of a student who considers artistic influences in her life.
by Soraya, 826NYC
This student’s powerful piece reveals the essence of racial injustice.
by Jazlyn Moses, 826 National
One student explores their online persona and the lasting importance of conscientious social media practices.
by Numan Khan, age 16, 826 Boston
A bilingual "I am" poem filled with conviction and courage.
by Savannah, 826NYC
Using dialogue and detailed description, this poet investigates whose voices are heard and whose voices are left behind when injustice occurs.
by Sammie, Grade 9, 826 MSP
In this letter from the Essential Words lesson, a freshman at South High School in Minneapolis thanks care workers for supporting our local and national communities during this global pandemic.
by Jasmine J, 826 Valencia
A student reflects on her origins to deconstruct social borders and seize her boundless future.
by Pia, 826NYC
A student reimagines food justice: Fruit Woman must convince Junk Food Man and Cheesecake Boy to eat their fruits and vegetables.
by Rey, Grade 9, 826 MSP
Aliens give this student superpowers to help him fulfill his greatest dream.
by Henry, Matthew, & Santiago, 826CHI
A compilation of letters written by three students across one city filled with thoughts on books, sports, music, family, and musings on Valentine’s Day.
by Sergio M, 826 Valencia
A smile isn’t always what it seems.
by Regina, 826LA
From the forthcoming anthology, Poets in Revolt!, this poem expresses the realization that a cage is not the only obstacle to a bird's freedom.
by Jonas K., 826 National
A student explores the paradox of how technology is used amongst teenagers.
by Byanna & Kayla, 826CHI
Two students across one city bond by writing letters to each other about the people they love most.
by Sabrin, 826 MSP
The written word is a powerful tool, and this poem shares a few reasons why the author continues to write.
by Melody Marcano, 826 Boston
In this poem, a student reflects on their roots and their desire to grow.
by Kyla Edwards, 826 New Orleans
This creative short story explores a snapshot of what a future New Orleans might look like amid climate change.
by David & Daniel, 826CHI
In this heartfelt exchange of letters, two students bond over food, videos games, and some scary adventures.
by Anjum, 826CHI
A shout-out poem to some things missed (Hyderabad) and celebrated (Mom).
by Samuel Wang, Grade 10, 826NYC
A poem about the complexity of love exchanged during the holidays.
by Aphra, 826CHI
A student considers realistic happy endings and the representation of LGBTQIA youth through the analysis of two webcomics.
by Gilbert, 826LA
One teen writes a letter to his 14-year-old self, citing his past fears but looking towards his present, a brighter future.
by Steysi Hailee, 826LA
A student reflects on a small moment and single sacrifice that transformed her outlook on giving.
by Mercury, 826CHI
A student explores the representation of LGBTQIA+ minorities and youth in US pop culture.
by Jazmine & Vanessa, 826CHI
Over a series of letters, two compassionate and resilient students develop a deep friendship sealed in writing.
by Tammy Fong, 826NYC
A soccer-filled, feud-fueled memoir.
by Vanessa Ramon-Ibarra, 826DC
Living in the digital world can create unwanted attachments, as one student laments.