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Sullivan creates forum for students’ creative work

By Danica Liang

Students and faculty have responded positively to a new addition to the school: a creative review. Organized by junior Isabel Sullivan, this creative review will be a literary journal made up of creative work submitted by students.

Submissions were due in mid-April and Sullivan plans to publish the creative review in print by June. If all goes smoothly, students can expect to see the creative review next year as well.

“I think it’s important to encourage students to be creative,” said Sullivan. She wishes to give students an outlet to publish creative work, something that the school has been lacking especially since cuts were made a couple of years ago to the creative writing classes that were once taught at AHS.

Senior Koe Inlow is one of the many students who participated. “It’s nice that students have an outlet to express their creativity and be supportive,” said Inlow.

Furthermore, the review will allow others to recognize one another’s creativity. “It gives the students an idea of the talent [among everyone at the school],” said Inlow.

Comprised of poetry, prose and original artwork, students were able to submit work of all kinds. Inlow submitted a visual arts piece. “I like the detail and being able to see something and put it on paper but distort it in a way that appears differently but makes the viewer think about color or shadow that is utilized,” said Inlow.

Fellow AHS faculty members who have taught creative writing in the past recognize the significance of having a creative outlet.

“You need a place for your creative voice to be heard. We have singing, dancing, acting, and students who write creatively need to have a forum for it,” said English teacher Judith Klinger.

In the past, Klinger has taught creative writing classes at AHS. In class, they worked on character development sketches, short stories, screenplays and poetry. “The most fun for all of us was when we were doing character development. We interviewed each other’s characters to see how three-dimensional the author had gotten them to be,” said Klinger.

English teacher Lisa Piazza has also taught creative writing and currently teaches creative writing classes for children through her own program called Wordplay Writing Workshop.

Like many, she was disappointed that the creative writing classes at AHS were cut. “So many of my students ask if they can do more creative writing, if there is a class for it, and it’s too bad I can’t say yes,” said Piazza.

Although Piazza wants to bring back the creative writing class, she is pleased to see progress with the school’s creative review.

In teaching creative writing to others, she enjoys the “creative energy of the students” and “watching them explore things from the position of a writer instead of a reader.”

AHS Journalism
The Oak Leaf, a product of the journalism class, is a vehicle of student expression and a public forum for the Alameda High School community.