Kangaroo Valley Public School, NSW
New Shoots, 2018
Kangaroo Valley School has a long and proud history. It has an important part to play in the lives of the 100 families whose children attend school. Many changes have occurred, especially in recent years to both the physical nature of the school and its clientele. Our stated purpose is to prepare our children for high school, and entry into society, by providing them with the best possible education.
Created by Red Room Poetry, New Shoots is a project that celebrates, cultivates and collects poems inspired by plants. By connecting with plants we aim to deepen our personal and cultural connections with nature.
Red Room Poetry returned to Kangaroo Valley Public School to invite students to emotionally and creatively connect with eucalyptus through a poetic lens. Gabrielle "Journey" Jones guided them uncovering the hidden stories and secrets of the iconic green giants we often take for granted; the workshop enriches understanding of poetry and the environment.
The 1.5 hour workshops focused on poetic creation, publication and performance.
‘The workshop was good and it was much different from last year. I didn’t know you could rap a poem but the rap was amazing. It was good and I really enjoyed it’.
~ Student feedback, Kangaroo Valley Public School
The student poems can be read here and were performed at the Kangaroo Valley Show on 17 February 2018.
Red Room Poetry’s Poetic Learning Program at Kangaroo Valley Public School has been generously supported by Australia Council for the Arts, Create NSW, Joanna Featherstone, Geoff Ainsworth AM, Graeme Wood Foundation and Andrew FitzSimons. Photos: Andrew Smee.
Gabrielle Journey Jones is a poet, percussionist and event producer born on sovereign Gadigal Land, Sydney, Australia. She is from Maori and African American bloodlines and lives in the Illawarra, NSW with her family.
Gabrielle has shared her poetry on open mics and by invitation at local, national and international events for over 20 years. Her first collection of poetry "Spoken Medicine" was published in October 2017 by Ginninderra Press.
Gabrielle spends most of her time being wholeheartedly inspired by creative communities which celebrate diversity, activism, inclusion and compassion.
Gabrielle encourages everyone she meets to speak their own medicine – to share the stories of their life journey in whatever forms feel safe, healing, authentic and most useful to them.
Gabrielle facilitates spoken word poetry workshops, teaches drumming and leads drum circles. She is currently involved in a range of collaborative projects and events including with Unspoken Words; Red Room Poetry; Kind Art Ed; South Coast Writers Centre; and the Tasmanian Poetry Festival.