George School provided many challenges and opportunities for creative expression, and I’ve grown tremendously as a writer during my time here. One of the ways I grow as a writer is through reading, and I’ve been exposed to a myriad of excellent literature in my time at George School. During my freshman year, I had my first experiences with William Shakespeare, August Wilson, Gabriel García Márquez, and Chinua Achebe. In my sophomore AP English class, we’ve focused on nonfiction. Through close reading and class discussions, I’ve expanded my understanding of argumentation, synthesis, and rhetorical analysis. I then got the chance to practice applying rhetorical techniques in my own writing through assignments like a research paper.
I also have had many opportunities to engage my passion for writing outside the classroom. The English teachers want you to succeed and are always there to offer support and guidance. I enjoy consulting one-on-one with my teachers to get individualized feedback. In my freshman year, my teacher helped me prepare three poems to submit to the Bucks County High School Poet of the Year Contest. I won the first runner up which was so exciting, but the process of working one-on-one with my teacher to hone my work was especially rewarding. I explored my poetry through new angles; my teacher opened doors for me to experiment with new structures and forms.
This year, my English teacher performed a musical tribute to Langston Hughes and opened up a challenge to the community to memorize a Harlem Renaissance poem and analyze it. I was one of three students who had the opportunity to perform my recitation at The Langston Hughes Tribute Challenge at the Michener Museum. It was a very informative and rich experience to commit a poem to memory and to explore the work of the Harlem Renaissance.
It’s not just the teachers who facilitate growth at George School. It is the students too. I attended club meetings of Argo, George School’s literary magazine as a freshman, and this year I joined the incredible team of Argo editors. Meeting weekly to read and discuss anonymous submissions of art, poetry, and prose had given me yet another space to explore writing. I benefit from getting feedback and constructive criticism of my own work, and I enjoy observing the creations of other students.
Rhianna is an editor of Argo, a tour guide, and a day student from Churchville, Pennsylvania.