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To thine own self be true...

Isabelle’s Poem, Highly Commended, Individual (8-11 years)

Highly Commended in the individual entry 8-11 years


Who created it?

Isabelle, age 11



“I’m Isabelle, aged 11 and I like spending my time with friends and writing short stories. I’m part of a swimming squad and really glad that my lessons have started again now. I try to challenge myself and experiment with new activities that take me out of my comfort zone.”


My creative response

I Am Me

The teacher barks an order, “What is this, what is that.”

My parents shout at me, “Do this, do that.”

An adult in the street shouts, “Oi, watch it!” 

And a little voice inside my head whispers, “What did I do to deserve that?”

Ohhh, how I feel so small and what I really want to say feels so massive.

Yet the adults just won’t listen to my big ideas. Am I too passive?

Maybe I’m not important, or maybe I’m just not meant to be.

WAIT NO!!! I have a right to say what I want to say and BE ME.

I might be small on the outside,

But I have a big voice on the inside.

And that not-so-little voice is yelling “I am me!”

“Oh teacher, oh teacher.” Just open your eyes and ears, and you will see.


About my creative response

“The story behind my poem is that I shorten my name to Issy (spelt with S's) and a teacher at my school kept telling me it should be spelt with Z's and refused to use my preferred spelling. It was a lesson for me in finding my own voice to stand up for myself and to be my own person.”


When have you been ‘true to yourself’?

“One time I have been true to myself is standing up to bullies at school. I strongly disagree with bullying and refused to join in with my friends when they were picking on a boy at school, instead, I took his side.”


What is your favourite Shakespeare play?

“My favourite Shakespeare play is Romeo and Juliet.”