Teachers at A.C. Jones High School were given several poems for students to read before the writers worked with them. Then, over a two-day period, Jesse Donaldson and Rebecca Wadlinger of WITS worked with the students on the elements of poetry and helped the students to write their own poems based on the style of one the poems they were given to read. Writers in the Schools is based in Houston, and its mission is to engage children in the pleasure and power of reading and writing.
Donaldson was born and raised in Kentucky and attended Kenyon College, where he studied English and history. He was a James Michener fellow in fiction and playwriting at The University of Texas-Austin. His work has appeared in The Greensboro Review, Gulf Coast, Little Star, The Kenyon Review and Confrontation. He previously worked as an editor at Phaidon Press, as fiction editor for Bat City Review and has taught at Eastern Kentucky University and Houston Community College.
Wadlinger received her M.F.A. in poetry from the Michener Center for Writers in Austin and is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Houston. She has received fellowships and awards from the James A. Michener Center for Writers, the Tin House Summer Writers Workshop and the Bucknell June Seminar for Younger Poets. Her work can most recently be found in the anthology Disco Prairie Social Aid and Pleasure Club (Factory Hollow Press, 2010), and the Best New Poets anthology. She works as the managing editor of Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts.