Tapestry of Faith: Exploring Our Values Through Poetry: A Program for High School Youth

Alternate Activity 1: Faith Poetry

Activity time: 20 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Journals and pens or pencils
  • Newsprint or dry erase board and markers

Description of Activity

Participants craft poems as a way to examine the relationship between wondering, believing, and knowing.

Distribute journals. Divide a sheet of newsprint into three columns-or make three columns on a dry erase board-each headed by one of the following, in this order:

  • I wonder...
  • I believe...
  • I know...

Invite participants to write a three-, six-, or nine-line poem or set of statements using these phrases to start each line. In other words, within each three-line group, the first line should begin with "I wonder... ."; the second should begin with "I believe... ."; and the third should begin with "I know... ." Allow ten minutes or more for the group to complete this assignment.

If time is limited, break into small groups for sharing. If time is not limited, invite volunteers to read aloud the poems or statement sets they created. As participants share their writing, spark reflective discussion with these questions:

  • How have your "wonder," "believe," and "know" lines changed as you have grown older? Do you wonder more now than when you were younger, or less? Believe more now, or less? Know more now, or less? Are there specific things you have upgraded from "wonder" to "know" or demoted from "know" to "wonder"?
  • Which part of your poem or statement sets most closely represents what you would call your faith?

Ask participants how The Wizard of Oz might have been different if Dorothy had known the power of her ruby slippers earlier in the story. What would she have gained? Lost? Did her faith go on a journey? Where did it end up?