Middle Schoolers Pen and Perform Their Masterpieces

Poetry and Shakespeare Fill the Air in May

With only a few weeks left of school, middle schoolers celebrated the end of the school year with a series of performances, bringing enthusiasm to the DIS community.

At the Poetry Slam, the middle schoolers in Ms. Butcher’s class presented their very own poems. They dedicated two weeks to choosing their themes and composing beautiful poems. 

Poem by Niha in 8th grade 

The caged bird wails

With fear, frustration yet fails

To imagine herself soaring high

In the bright sky

Cries of curiosity and sadness

Hoping for someone to save her from this madness


But why wail when you can sing

Like robins in the spring

Why be quiet when you can fight

And show bravery like a knight

Leewen performs her magnificent poem with gestures. Photo by Lewis Kim.

Ms. Butcher, the middle school ELA teacher, divided students into committees to help lead the event to perfection. Hosts led the Poetry Slam; the snack crew prepared grubs; the decoration crew charmingly decked the class; the production crew created slides to explain the poems; and last, the clean-up crew cleaned up the class after the show. 

Lydia in 6th grade illustrated, “I loved that Ms. Butcher made the classroom look like a cafe. I had a fun time listening to others’ poems and seeing people’s creative sides that we don’t always get to see.”

Audiences enjoy listening to the poems in comfort. Photo by Lewis Kim.

The snack committee gave out snacks to the performers after the show ended. Following COVID-19 regulations, they were able to enjoy the treats and celebrate with their peers outside the classroom. 

Haydn in 7th grade added, “One of the best parts was being able to go out and eat snacks with my friends because, after COVID-19, I didn’t have much chance to talk this freely with my friends with snacks to enjoy.” 

Deeper into the shows, The 7th and 8th graders performed two Shakespearean stories in the presentation hall. The 7th graders performed A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and the 8th graders acted out Macbeth. The students put in their best efforts and collaborated for a month to perfect all aspects of the performance. 

The 7th graders performing one of the scenes in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Photo by Jade Lee.

Ms. Loutsch, the middle and high school ELA teacher, remarked, ”We have students take the challenge of bringing together a certain scene in small groups and act … as if they are taking an adaptation to retell the story in modern English.”

Ms. Butcher added, “Each student has a different role, and they had to create their script so they can do more of a modern retelling of Shakespeare. They also had to memorize their lines, prepare their costumes and props, and set aside time for rehearsals!”

The three witches in Macbeth perform a prophecy. Photo by Lisa Seok.

Middle schoolers composed these literary masterpieces and opened them up to the DIS community. Many high schoolers visited to celebrate the end of the school year together. 

Ryan in 8th grade claimed, “I think the performance went pretty well. There was an audience watching us, and we were able to see their reactions, so the performance was a great opportunity to act in front of people. I especially liked the last scene where Alvin and Robert fought as Macbeth and Macduff.”  

The last scene of the Macbeth play where Macbeth and Macduff fight. Photo by Lisa Seok.

Alex in 10th grade, who watched Macbeth, explained, “I really liked the play. The students acted it out in a creative way. Their costumes and props also helped me enjoy and understand the play.” 

Students and teachers alike worked together to create and present their magnificent renditions of some of Shakespeare’s greatest plays. The costumes were full of beauty and were a big help to the audience.  

6th, 7th, and 8th graders finished their year by flaunting their diverse literary creations in front of the DIS community. Give them a round of applause for the dedication they put in to give a perfect performance!