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Homer 2 Hip Hop Program Structure

  • 16-session in-school residencies at our 4 partner schools: P.S. 69, P.S. 11, I.S. 125, and I.S. 145

  • Dedicated teaching artists specializing in poetry/spoken word/oral traditions, who introduce students in grades 3-8 to diverse, multilingual oral poetry traditions from around the world--including from students’ own cultural backgrounds--and guide them to create their own works in these forms;

  • Students explore the connection between the written/spoken word and other arts, including visual arts, music, theater, and dance;

  • Classroom visits by recognized poets practicing the different traditional and contemporary poetic forms;

  • Training students in City Lore’s POEMobile software to project their words onto buildings and other outdoor and indoor built environments;

  • A culminating poetry gathering where the young poets share their work before their peers and community members;

  • A series of professional development workshops for our teacher-partners; 

  • An evaluation study of 5 years of sequential learning conducted by Wolf Brown Associates; and

  • A published and digital curriculum for educators on integrating poetry and oral traditions in the classroom.

Meet the wonderful poetry, music, and inter-disciplinary teaching artists facilitating Homer 2 Hip Hop!

Kate Bell

P.S. 11, I.S. 145

Grace Galu

I.S. 125

Amira El-Behiri

P.S. 11

Jan Henry-Gray

P.S. 11

Baba Israel

I.S. 125

Sergio Jimenez

P.S. 11, I.S. 145

Mei Kazama

P.S. 69

Elizabeth Leonard

I.S. 125

Saroya Marsh

P.S. 11

Libby Mislan

P.S. 69

Samira Sadeque

P.S. 11

Melvis Santa

Bryant HS

In-School Programs

Jan-Henry Gray _ Amira PS11 3rd grade poem about home_12.12.19.jpg

P.S. 11, Woodside

3rd Grade

(2019 - 2020)

With teaching artists Amira El-Behiri and Jan-Henry Gray

In the spring of 2020, schools shifted to remote learning. In their first year of the program, students of P.S. 11 worked with TAs on Quarantine poems. They also developed a group poem titled "We Can Make a House Called Tomorrow."


I.S. 125 6th grade student journal.jpg

I.S. 125, Woodside


P.S. 69, Jackson Heights

3rd Grade

(2019 - 2020)

With teaching artists Libby Mislan
& Samira Sadeque

Students began the program writing poems like "A House Called Tomorrow" and "It Takes a Pandemic." They collaborated on a community poems titled "I Know, I Wish, I Wonder" and "Shout Out." Click to visit the culmination website and watch students recite their poems. 

Check out the lesson plan for this project if you're interested in trying this with your students!

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I.S. 145, Jackson Heights

6th Grade

(2019 - 2020)

With Teaching Artists

Baba Israel & Grace Galu

6th Grade

(2019 - 2020)

With Teaching Artist Sergio Jimenez

Students began the program working with TA Sergio on Covid Monster drawings and concrete poetry about their experience being quarantined at home during the pandemic. 

These projects gave students an outlet to be able to express or vent their struggles and experiences during this difficult time.

View the student work



The kids are interested and eager to begin. The content is interesting. The artists are incredibly patient with students and pleasantly enthusiastic.

-Classroom Teacher at PS 69

Thank you so much Ms. Samira and Ms. Libby for such amazing work!! And this amazing program for our kids!! I feel so proud of Sebastian's poems and how much he enjoys your classes and for him to be so open to express what he learned in front of everyone!!

Amira is doing a great job holding the students’ attention, while some are in class or through a zoom call. She connects her material to history as well as specific cultural beliefs and traditions.

-Classroom Teacher at PS 11

-A PS 69 Parent

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