In Poetry Out Loud, Chariho elementary students keep things upbeat and dress the part

In Poetry Out Loud, Chariho elementary students keep things upbeat and dress the part

WOOD RIVER JCT. — Verses about the good things in life — doughnuts, grandpas, cats, baseball, and even the video game Minecraft — sprang from the minds of Chariho elementary school students at the district’s fifth annual Poetry Out Loud reading.

Sixty students from the Ashaway, Hope Valley, Richmond and Charlestown elementary schools gathered Monday at the Chariho High School courtyard, with parents and siblings watching, to recite their own poems. 

Hope Valley Elementary School Principal Joe Gencarelli kicked off the event with his own poem. 

“The courage these students have to speak in front of a crowd is nothing but amazing and will make you even more proud,” Gencarelli concluded.

Many of the students took their presentation beyond reciting their work. Several dressed up as their subjects. 

Hope Valley kindergartener Briar Coggeshall put paper cutout panda ears atop her head and decorated her nose and eyes to look like the furry bear.

Pandas are soft. Pandas eat bamboo, Briar said. 

“Pandas are my favorite animal, are they your favorite animal too,” her couplet concluded.

First-grade student Kelley Drake, who goes to Hope Valley, had a short poem about his favorite sport, baseball. 

“Catching and throwing are lots of fun, but my favorite thing is to hit home runs,” he said.

“Flowers” was the title of second-grade student Natalie Taylor’s poem.

The words flowed out of her mouth: “Blooming, swaying, sprouting, eating, drooping, growing, smelling, drinking, living, dying, there the petals go. Like children growing older every year of their life.”

Charlestown Elementary School’s Adam Lenihan, Grade 4, shared memories of building a fire and other fun activities with his grandfather. 

“I remember you Pépé,” he said before taking a bow. 

There was plenty of variety from the youngsters. One girl praised the sport of lacrosse. Luke Baxter riffed on “cool” volcanoes that blast out lava. Fourth-grade Richmond boys Nicholas Wilusz, Lucas Callahan and Joseph Richards wrote about great times playing Minecraft. 

“Arriving in the End, beating the Ender dragon, I am such a pro,” was the last line of one of the poems. 

And sweets were on the minds of several of the youngsters.

Nola Rocha and Emma Isaacs, third-graders at Ashaway, have a favorite food.  

“Doughnuts, doughnuts, everywhere, I love them I do, they are so fun to eat,” the duo said in unison. 

Nataleigh Tyler and Raegan Noble, both in second-grade at Richmond, presented “The Magical Cupcake,” about a flying confection that looked sweet and ready to eat.

“I grabbed it and nom, nom, nom,” was the last line.

After the presentation, children excitedly grabbed real cupcakes, along with cookies and fruit. 

“One last standing ovation for these guys,” Gencarelli said after the show. “To see them doing this is mind-boggling. I love it.”


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