Genre Practice Writing

Kariyma's Prose Poem: Can You Tell?

Can you tell?

Or am I actually fooling you?

I wish I can tell you what I feel. How much pain I’m going through. I wish you didn’t believe me when I said I was happy. I was a girl full of life and color, now everything is dull and quiet. I just wish someone would hug me until all the anger and pain fade away and tell me I'm not as worthless as I think.

Did you mean it when you said you really love me - that I was your world, your heart in human form, or was that just lies to get me in bed? You hurt me. Can you tell I'm lying? I thought you said you knew me like the back of your hand. If you did, why can’t you tell I’m lying when I said I’m happy, or can you tell that I'm faking the smile I’m wearing now?

I'm starting to get scared of my own thoughts, like “why was I even born into this life?” Look what you did to me.

I'm more in love with the memories we had than I ever was with you. The part I miss the most is when we used to sit by the window and just let the words flow. Then we sat in silence for a couple of minutes and stare at the moon and say the first thing that came to our mind.

You were so easy to talk to.

I was just so comfortable around you.I love the way our lips touched. It felt like I was the luckiest girl alive the way you used to just look at me and tell me I’m the best gift you can ever receive--the way you smiled at me and gave me that look--the way you would tell me you love me just so I could hear, but the best part was when you used to lay on my chest just so you could hear my heartbeat, so you could know it’s real and you weren’t dreaming. They were the simple things that made me fall in love with you.

I know those are just memories. I guess I had to snap back to reality and realize nothing lasts forever.

Ronelle's Spoken Word: Writing Portfolio Reflection

My Reflection

They say everyone is gifted

My gift is writing

And I've grown from a seed to a bud to blooming to a flower

At first I wrote kiddy rhymes

Roses are red and violets are blue

But I've grown and I've written about the reasons why you are you

Why love isn't more than a word

And why depression is more than a mental illness

And why those little boys are always getting curved

I went from writing to why fuckboys should open there eyes

To the secret friend who told me many lies

To writing to my dear diary about my life secrets

To writing about how insecure I am about how I weigh and my features

The mentors I have

Have gotten me prepared to my draft in the war of writing

But there is no blood or fighting

Only words of truth and wisdom and feedback

And instantly I clap back

I hated feedback but Kate has taught me to love it

It has given me an insight on things I've never thought of before

And writing will now forever be my cure

To pain to hurt to heartbreak to me falling

To me getting back up to me hearing my calling

Not from god

But from the words written on a page

And my goals for next semester

Is to work on talking about the jester

The one in my head that likes to play jokes

The one that takes everything seriously until I hit them high notes

Talking bout baby won't you be mine

And instantly he laughs

Talking bout baby won't you shut up

So I wanna give people an insight

On what loving the cruel will do

I will clock back when u say fix it I will run it back when you say repeat it I will turn it around when you tell me I'm wrong but I will NOT change it when you tell me to

I have been drafting for many months and I have been revising my work of art

And I think here at UAGC in room 227 is where I will start

Ethan's Writing Portfolio Reflection: A New UAGC Writer

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Ethan is a boy at a new high school, trying to figure out how things work. Taking place in room 227, Ethan has been trying to learn from his mistakes with the Writing Process.

He has grown as a writer because he learned how to use purpose and audience over the first semester. Like in his first writing piece ‘Meet and Greet: Jesus Reuda,’ he didn’t understand how to use purpose and audience. In fact, he thought that you just write what you feel like writing and hand it in when it has an intro, body paragraphs and a conclusion. He didn’t follow the writing steps well because he didn’t understand it at first. He has a few writing pieces in his notebook that will get a bad grade because of this.

Ethan began to understand purpose and audience when he wrote his third piece, ‘Thanksgiving Letter,” because of all of the Shares he had seen, and the conferences he had around purpose and audience. He was able to tell his family what he was thankful for, and it made him feel brave because he was able to announce it in front of a whole group of people.

His goals for next semester are to become more engaged and attentive, use more time for useful things and check the rubric after he’s finished with a writing piece. He is hopeful for at least a C in this class (but would love a B) because he believes his participation in Mini-lessons and Shares helped him stand out in class.

Ronelle Pelissier's Spoken Word: Inauguration Response

Don't Judge a Book

They say don't judge a book by it’s cover

But what if the cover is ripped off

And we know who the book was written for

Because we blind our kids to the truth and tragedy

And cover it up with dora and spongebob

But when we give them their first iphone

They are introduced to porn and websites that have nothing but hate comments like instagram twitter and facebook

We are blinded by the fact that parental guidance is still in the rulebook

We let our kids expose other kids naked pictures

And yes this wouldn't of happened if the pictures were never sent

But teach your kid what “I Love you” means and the fact you shouldn't say it to a girl just for a good laugh


We are all proud of our president for winning the election

And when our kids grow up they will not memorize the star spangled banner

Or lines from the bible

They will memorize “grab them by the pussy” and women are nothing but sex objects and your maids

We are blinded that everyone will be once introduced to the horrors of this world

So when the word “Nigga” is apart of their vocabulary

Do not blame it on the people they hang around

Blame it on yourself for never introducing how bad the word is and its meaning

Because we ignore the truth

Until it's pushing to come out like a baby

And when it does come out we will not feed it and cradle it with love

We will cover it up with more lies to hide that everyone makes mistakes

On the news i see rob kardashian posting about his lover leaving him

And that's sad and all

But not as sad as kids in countries being bombed and left as orphans

But we will never show the kids this side of the world

Because we want them growing up with pure minds

But pure minds will not save you when you're in need of knowledge

We spoil our kids with gifts and money and lie to them telling them it's ok to throw tantrums when they don't get their way

But we don't show the side where kids gifts is a small crumb of bread because again we want their minds to be pure and blind of the truth

They say don't judge a book by its cover

But what if the cover is ripped of

And we know who the book is written for

Its written for the kids growing up today who know nothing but judgment and lies

Support Students Pursuing Their College Dreams

Created by UAGC Junior Azra Muratovic

Do you remember the time you went to go visit a college?

The day you stepped off the bus and walked on college campus. Strolling through the college hallways and streets is a completely different feeling than looking at the school online. 

At our school, the Urban Assembly School for Green Careers (UAGC), a public high school in New York City, juniors have been devoting their time into researching colleges and have gained a passion for them but cannot determine if these schools would be the right fit for them.

At UAGC, our college counselor’s office is the only resource we have to explore and get an input on schools. 93% of our students live below the federal poverty level and many have parents who work multiple jobs in order to put money in places that are more of a necessity like rent and food. As well, over 90% of the students at Green Careers are first-generation college going students. Given that many students are first-generation, parents tend to lack knowledge about navigating and planning the application process. Johancarla, a member of UAGC's junior class is a first-generation American born student to immigrant parents who believe that education is their child's ticket out of poverty, is also hoping to be the first person in her family to go to college. Neither of her parents attended college, and her family has relied heavily upon the expertise of the school's staff to help them navigate the complicated application process.

The trip will take place in late April and we will be visiting New York State’s Capital Region. Over the course of two days, we plan to visit 4 different college campuses including public and private. These experiences will be crucial in finalizing our application plans, as visiting a college campus is often the best way to determine whether or not it is a good fit.

These students simply can’t afford a trip like this and it cannot happen without your help. We thank you in advance for your support in making our college decision.

Donate now or help spread the word!

Nadya Diaz's Advice Column: Advice to Slackers

At some point while you're in high school, you just become lazy and careless about the class, work and your attendance. These times are rough, especially overcoming them. This little time period can last any where from a couple days to weeks, sometimes even months. But you need to keep something in mind, change begins with you. You are the one who has complete control over your actions, therefore you have the ability to make a difference. I am just here to give you tips on things you can do to be successful when it comes to homework.


It is so easy to get home from school, throw your bookbag somewhere and not even touch it until the morning of school. There are better things we want to do rather than homework, like playing videogames, watching tv or going outside. Some of us even have jobs or practice and making time for homework just adds stress. What are you going to do with all of this overwhelming stress?

First you need to be determined. Recognize how your school work reflects onto your grades which will eventually determine your future. Here are some tips that work for me:

  • Plan out what you need to do. It is essential to keep track of all the work you have to get done. This can be as simple as writing down your upcoming due dates and the assignments right next to it. Get a planner or simply get a paper you can refer to.

  • You can make this into a checklist, once you have finished the assignment, you  can check it off and move to the next. Remember to prioritize what is due soon.

  • As soon as you get home from school, do your homework right away. Get into your pajamas if you'd like and get right to your homework. Just so you can get it over with. Think of it this way, the sooner you do it the faster it gets done. When you're finished, then you can treat yourself to whatever you like doing for fun. Video games, movie time, etc. But all rewards are earned and it's up to you to become committed to getting the work done so you can have a prize in the end.

  • You can even try taking small 15 minute breaks. Get a snack, listen to your favorite songs, meditate, do yoga or whatever you’d like.

  • Separate your homework into chunks - if you work after school or are in a sports  team, you probably know that the thought of doing homework is agonizing, especially doing it all at once. But if you can't do it all at once, separate it

  • If you have homework for every subject, then whenever you have free time in classes, get started.

  • On your way to school you can read the homework criteria, book that was assigned or print articles for research in history. If you have anything to read, just read on your to and from school.

  • If you work, you have a lunch break, take that time to eat and finish up some work. There isn't really much you can do if you're in a sports team because you can't work and play, so the best advice would be is when you get home, get straight to work. If you usually set time aside to watch a TV show or a sports game, don't watch it. You can always catch it on demand, online or record it on your DVR (If your tv allows that, check!)

  • You can even use your school lunch time. I know teachers often stay in classes to eat or offer to stay in during lunch to help students. Take advantage of that. Pack a lunch from home or ask to bring your school lunch to class. Im sure they will understand that you need this time to work and eat. Teachers like students who work hard and take any time possible to do what they have to do.

  • Besides lunch time, I’m sure teachers come early to school and even stay a little after. Take advantage of this time. Come early to school and sit in the cafeteria, work on math, history or science. It might not be a lot of time but it makes a difference, the same goes for staying after school if you have the free time.

  • Class is your time to learn, but sitting with people who don't want to learn or never get anything done won't do anything for you but make you fall behind, so sit with kids that are productive during work time, sit with students who will be able to answer questions for you when you need them too. This is a great tool for any high school student.

  • Create a schedule- This is something you are responsible for. Plan out your day by the hour. From when you wake up until the time you’d like to go to sleep. You can use the calendar app on your phone or get a planner.

    → By doing this you are becoming more aware of how your day should look like, when you are busy or free and on your free time, dedicated an hour or more for work.

Here is an example of a planner:

Last but not least, THE WEEKEND! I cannot stress how much you can get done in two days. You will be surprised. No one wants to do homework in the weekend but if you have a pretty extensive assignment, the weekend is your best friend.

Wake up on Saturday or Sunday, eat your breakfast and once you’re done work on your homework. The earlier the better. If you're not a morning person and like staying up late, Saturday night is the perfect time to just lay in bed where it's quiet and do some reading and writing. It's good for your brain and you’ll concentrate more.