Our Pens & Pages Class has returned in person! The class itself has been offered and up and running on Zoom for the past two years. We first transitioned to online in March of 2020 at the start of the pandemic shutdown. Now, as we more fully reopen as an organization, we welcome back our students to in-person study. This will be the first class to return. Citizenship Test Preparation tutorials and ELL, Math and College Support tutorials also have been meeting in person for the last few weeks.
The Pens & Pages Program is designed for adult students to read and discuss good literature, and to develop their own personal writings. Each week we read about 30 pages for homework, and we write a 20 – 40 minute memoir-type piece of writing. Then, in class, we discuss what we have read and we share our writings. Students give feedback to each other on strengths seen in their classmates’ writings and give tips on what can be improved. Each semester we focus on a different theme, but we have done something different during this academic year. We have dedicated the entire year to reading, discussing and writing about the topic of “Black and African-American Experiences in the U.S.” We look forward to reading Amanda Gorman’s book of poetry, Call Us What We Carry, this coming summer.
Vermont Humanities Council plays a central role in this program. VHC provides all of our books for free, and students get to keep their books. We also enjoy visits from a guest-teacher, Peter Burns, who works for VHC.