Essay about a Poem

Illustration Elements

Illustration Éléments

Illustration Sub-competencies


Students were asked to write group essays on a poem of their choice and then reflect on their creative thinking. This group of three students chose to write their essay on “The Ballad of William Bloat” by Raymond Calvert.


Sample Student Work

Student Reflection

Teacher Observation

It took this group more than one try to complete the essay. When they got stuck, they reported that they just “did other things until they thought of something.” The teacher found that the reflections provided her with more evidence of the students’ creative thinking than did the essays themselves.



I can get new ideas in areas in which I have an interest and build my skills to make them work.

I generate new ideas as I pursue my interests. I deliberately learn a lot about something by doing research, talking to others, or practicing, so that I can generate new ideas about it; the ideas often seem to just pop into my head. I build the skills I need to make my ideas work, and I usually succeed, even if it takes a few tries.


I can get new ideas or reinterpret others’ ideas in novel ways.

I get ideas that are new to my peers. My creative ideas are often a form of self-expression for me. I have deliberate strategies for quieting my conscious mind (e.g., walking away for a while, doing something relaxing, being deliberately playful), so that I can be more creative. I use my experiences with various steps and attempts to direct my future work.


I communicate purposefully, using forms and strategies I have practiced.

I participate in conversations for a variety of purposes (e.g., to connect, help, be friendly, learn and share). I listen and respond to others. I can consider my purpose when I am choosing a form and content. I can communicate clearly about topics I know and understand well, using forms and strategies I have practiced. I gather the basic information I need and present it.