Creative Writing Advances Birchwood Teams to the Next Level

8thgrade team (left to right):

Front row: Dilan Nadkarni (Avon), Cadence Guo (Broadview Heights), Manan Raina (Brecksville), Reyna Uechi (alternate) (Lakewood)

Back row: Sebastian Boyer (Cleveland), Sinan Haufe (Cleveland), Chloe Leng (Hinckley)

Last month, Birchwood’s seventh and eighth grade teams competed at the district level Power of the Pen creative writing tournament taking top honors. The seventh grade team placed second and the eighth grade team placed first. Both teams advance to the regional competition.

Individually, Isabelle Bixler won 4th place overall, and also a “best of round” award. Areesha Nouman won “Best of Round” in two out of the three rounds.

Jennifer Seward, one of their coaches, described the event saying, “What many people may not realize is that Power of the Pen is more than a showcase of writing talent and creativity. Students must have stamina, they must be willing to practice their storytelling, and they must be open to constructive criticism. All of these students possess all of these things. It's such an honor to see their hard work pay off.”

Along with Jennifer Seward, coaches Charles Debelak, Lorraine Tzeng, and Maysan Haydar congratulate their teams who will go on to compete in the regional tournament on March 13th hosted by Baldwin-Wallace University:

7th grade: 

Isabella Bixler (Fairview Park)

Mariana Del Rio (Strongsville)

Omar Elbadawy (Avon)

Katie Leonardi (Westlake)

Areesha Nouman (Westlake)

Michael Zhu (Avon)

8th grade: 

Cadence Guo (Broadview Heights)

Sinan Haufe (Cleveland)

Dilan Nadkarni (Avon)

Sebastian Boyer (Cleveland)

Chloe Leng (Hinckley)

Manan Raina (Brecksville)

Reyna Uechi (alternate) (Lakewood)

Power of the Pen competitions consist of three rounds of timed creative writing based on unique prompts. But, competitions are not their only focus. Their broader mission is to help young people find and develop a creative voice that is uniquely theirs. Power of the Pen seeks to empower teachers and challenge students to embrace the art of creative expression through writing as a life skill, not just a competitive exercise. About 7,500 students participate in their tournaments each year, but they provide in-class instructional materials that reach over 120,000 students in Ohio. 

Birchwood School of Hawken is a private, coeducational school in Cleveland, Ohio. Founded in 1984, Birchwood serves students in kindergarten through grade 8. Birchwood's missionis to equip children to lead a life of becoming – growing, thriving and flourishing – through the development of intellect and character.

Aubrey Fox

Birchwood School alumni writing some press releases for them.

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Volume 17, Issue 5, Posted 7:38 PM, 03.03.2021