DC poet, spoken word artist, activist, musician, and educator Bomani Armah recently led an experiential writing workshop for Mentor Foundation USA’s at Cesar Chavez Public Charter School’s Parkside campus. It was an inspiring session where mentors and their mentees creatively converted and applied “theories” learned in school into the professional world of creative writing.
Bomani started the session by giving an impromptu introductory concert presenting his hit single “The Hustle.” Students and mentors were then asked to dissect and analyze the song utilizing literary techniques and devices. Participants identified the main idea of the song, supporting elements and details that reinforced the main idea as well as visuals and complementary elements that added to the intended impact of the poem.
Using a creative writing template Bomani then guided the group in writing a poem reflecting each individual’s life story, which could be delivered as a spoken word piece or a song. Mentees and mentors proudly rapped, sang, and/or recited their original creations to the group.
To wrap up a very inspiring and unique mentoring session, Bomani helped the group create a sonnet about the Mentor Foundation USA and mentee and mentor experiences. Watch a clip of them performing the Mentor Foundation USA theme song here.
Kudos to mentees Kyree, Santos, Kenya & Hamirah for cleverly penning the following words: “Being here at the Mentor Foundation helps us build skills, network, set goals, and have fun with caring mentors”… Mentor Roberto Borgia offered insights by sharing that mentoring is “a welcome adjustment and/or disruption in your every day life schedule where we as caring adults get to help a young person.” Longtime mentor Luther Ivery, concluded that “this was the best mentoring session ever.”