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2023 PCS Creative Writing Winners

By Brandy Powers

The capstone of a classical education at Providence Classical School is the Senior Thesis in which our seniors write, present, and defend a thesis on a topic of their choice. To prepare them for the Senior Thesis, Providence students begin incrementally learning the skills of effective written and verbal communication starting at the very beginning of their education. Over the years, they will write numerous essays and give countless presentations such as kindergarten presentations on presidents and first ladies, sixth grade “wax museum” speeches on World War II topics, eighth grade logic essays, and the junior research project on a landmark Supreme Court decision.

But students at Providence do not just write and present technical papers. We encourage our students’ creative sides, too. Grammar school students begin by retelling fables and other short narratives, first verbally and then in writing, incorporating the skills they are learning in grammar, composition, and phonics and adding their own creative flourishes. Logic and Rhetoric school students write original short stories and poetry.

Rhetoric school students with a special interest in creative writing can participate in the Inklings, a student-led organization for ninth through twelfth grade students. Members of the Inklings participate in monthly writing challenges, share their stories and poems with one another, and give each other constructive feedback.

We also have two writing contests, one for fiction and one for poetry that are open to all upper school students, seventh through twelfth grades. Students may enter their best poems in the Poet Laureate contest which contains categories for both traditional forms and free verse poems. The Poet Laureate contest is a longstanding annual tradition at PCS. In the spring of 2023, we added a short story contest. The school community was notified of the winners of both contests last spring. The winners of the fiction contest were given feedback from the judges on how to make their stories even stronger, and they took the summer to incorporate that feedback.

We are pleased to share the winning poems and short stories from the 2022–2023 school year. On the following pages, you will find a variety of student creativity – historical fiction, fantasy, realistic fiction, humor, heartache, and redemption. You will experience traditional form poems with expert meter and rhyme, and you will read free verse poems that skillfully use language to evoke particular moods and feelings. Please enjoy this small selection from our Providence students.

Poetry Awards

Click here to read all our 2023 Poetry Award winners!

2023 Poet Laureate

Mark Williamson, 11th Grade

Rhetoric School
Best Free Verse: Ayin Marusik, 11th Grade
Runner Up: Isa Stan, 9th Grade

Best Traditional Form: Caden Pickle, 11th Grade
Runner Up: Isabel Vorst, 11th Grade

Logic School
Best Free Verse: Naomi Joseph, 7th Grade
Best Traditional Form: Turner Young, 8th Grade

Short Story Awards

By Annelise Parker, 10th Grade
First Place

One Last Chance
By Luke Williamson, 9th Grade
Second Place

So Through the Night Rode Sybil Ludington
By Susanna Brink, 11th Grade
Third Place

The Poet King
By Isabel Vorst, 11th Grade
Honorable Mention

By Naomi Joseph, 7th Grade
Honorable Mention

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