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Hillside Middle Student to Become a Published Poet!

March 22, 2021

Emerson Beets has achieved quite an accomplishment this school year.

This Hillside Middle School fifth grader in Parma Virtual Learning Academy is going to be a published poet!

Beets was named a winner in Kent State University’s National Writing Project "Write Where You Are" poetry contest for students in grades k -12. 

Beets’ poem “A Place I Love” won second place and will be published nationally in the “Write Where you Are” Poetry Magazine in April!

“I did not think I would win,” Beets shared. “I actually thought about not doing it, but I’m really glad I did!” 

The prompt this year was to write a poem about a place that holds a special meaning to them and use that special place as an inspiration. Beets decided to write about her grandparents’ pool. 

“A Place I Love”
A place I love is my grandparents’ pool
I spend about half my summer there, with is pretty cool
I can’t wait to jump in the deep end again this year,
It is one place I really have no fear.
I like to meet my cousins there, we call them “the Boys”,
When we are all together, there will be a lot of noise.
Relaxing on a float, the water is nice and still,
Then my Dad jumps in and makes the water into waves as high as a hill.
I sit in class and dream of winter being done,
I can’t wait to get back to the pool’s summer fun!

“I was pretty excited I won because my mom and my dad and my mom’s sister and a bunch of their friends all went to Kent State,” Beets said. “I want to go to Kent State, too.”

Hillside fifth grade PVLA ELA teacher, Evegenia Boulas, participated in a National Writing Project class over the summer and brought this opportunity to her students this school year. She had her students write on this prompt during a “seven-minute write” she has her students do every day in class.

It was the first time Beets said he had written poetry and she had fun writing it.

“I like writing,” she expressed. “My grandparents’ pool is a really special place for me, and I do spend half of my summer there, so it came really easy to me to write about it. I swim and see my cousins, grandparents and family. It’s a really fun place for me to go.”

“I was super excited Emerson won because we do ‘seven-minute writes’ every day as part of the district’s initiative to get our students writing more, so I just put this prompt out there for the students to write a poem and see what happens,” Boulas expressed. “I encouraged them to keep working on it after class and send it in. I really wasn’t expecting anyone to win, but Emerson’s stuck out in my mind and she was so excited about this contest. I’m so proud of her.”

“Emerson is awesome,” Boulas further expressed. “She works so, so hard. She is a class leader. She organizes social zooms on her own for her class. She has so much spirit and started her own PVLA pep club. She is such an inspiration and motivator for her classmates and everybody.”