Connected Learning Teaching Writing

Poetry as a Vehicle for Social Change


Teacher consultants Jennifer Woollven and Alina Pruitt share their Poetry as a Vehicle for Social Change project as well as examples of student work. Originally published on July 23, 2011

Poetry as a vehicle for social change is a collection of lessons and poetry that has been used in middle and high school classes in Central Texas. The video below includes lessons and ideas.

Following this video we’ve included student examples of the work.

“Crooked Justice”

“See, the hues of right and wrong seem to blur
When it reaches their shade of blue, their shade of justice.”

This is a student example of a digital poem, created by one of my high school students.


“Being judged by the color of my skin.
Why won’t people just look within?”

This mixed-media presentation was created by a high school student in my class about the racism he faces, and his hopes for a better future.

“Starting at Home” – PSA Example

After students wrote poems and transformed them into digital pieces, they looked at the pattern of themes that emerged from their collective work.  Students then moved into groups and put together public service announcements in the form of movies and podcasts.