Turning a new page

Creative Writing enrollment grows as program attracts younger students.

Creative Writing has been a popular class at Decatur for over 20 years, but recently the demographics of the program have changed. 

Teacher Kerri Williams noticed that students who take Creative Writing I tend to be younger. “There are a lot more sophomores in the class now,” she said. 

This Williams' 2nd year teaching Creative Writing 2.
Although Williams’ has taught English at Decatur, this is only her 2nd year teaching Creative Writing 2.

Williams attributes this higher participation to the IB diploma program.

Along with this change, more students are continuing into Creative Writing II, which now includes an all-time high of seven students. 

Creative Writing II offers a different learning experience than the first course. Students learn what Williams calls “discipline.”

For Creative Writing II student, junior TaeLah Oliver, “It’s good to have that type of challenge.”

The class is also more focused on the individual, and students choose their own projects, which requires initiative. If Williams has a student who wants to focus on modern day myth-stories, the student would have to research and investigate other stories of the same genre.

This type of independence pushes Oliver.

“I have to be on top of myself,” she said.

In Williams’ eyes, the class can still improve. 

“The first year I did it [last year], I didn’t really get any feedback,” she said.

She hopes that this year’s a bigger class will open up room for conversations about progress.