The Chicago City of Learning’s Young Author Playlist is a 5-genre learning journey that allows students and participants the chance to develop the habits of a writer, better their technical writing skills, connect with peer-based writing communities, and gain access to expertise editing and mentoring.
The genres include Non-Fiction, Fiction, Journalism, Poetry, and Scriptwriting. Each student chooses their own genre that best suits their interests and then proceed to follow a real-life pathway that includes some of the same challenges and activities a writer would encounter.
Young Author Playlist can also be used in classroom settings to help students explore writing pathways outside of the school’s curriculum.
Students participating in the program either by themselves or in a classroom setting receive feedback through the website.
Alex Kruger’s class at Chicago Quest did the poetry pathway together as a class. All the students got to participate in different activities and challenges that the website offers. Kruger said that the Young Author Playlist has a lot of resources to inspire and motivate the students to write while also teaching them different writing techniques.
“Young Authors was a really great way for me to create an avenue around writing, where the students are authors and they’re submitting their work to be read by people outside the school.”
The students in Kruger’s class worked on the poetry pathway.
Kruger’s students finished the program with an open mic where the students were able to share their poetry in a group setting with their peers as the audience.
With Young Authors Playlist, the students in Kruger’s class were able to complete their own poetry and experience sharing it in a community setting, much like a published poet would do at a coffee shop or a show.