Here is an interview I did with Josephine Reed at the National Endowment for the Arts about my poetry writing, teaching, and coaching.
Community leader and shero of mine, Ms. Joanne Bland from Selma, Alabama, after reading my poem, said “I know my work is needed and when I get weary, I will read your wonderful words and just as they did now get the strength to carry on. Thank you.”
“Jonathan’s work is sensitive and awake. For such a young man, he speaks with a wise, poignant voice that thrills and educates. His perspective is fresh and his topics relevant and real.”
~ Gayle Danley, master teaching artist with the Kennedy Center, 1994 National Individual Slam Champion, 1996 International Individual Slam Champion, and 2006 Young Audiences National Artist of the Year.
“You rocked this grandmother’s world this afternoon; watching you recite your moving and powerful poetry brought me tears.” ~ Judy Hopkins, nurse from Maine
“Jonathan Tucker was a great poet whose poems are not only deep but inspiring as well. When he was here, he taught me new ways to find my poems. He was a great speaker and an even better poet. His teachings were fun and easy to comprehend.”
~Carlos Campbell, 8th grader at Benjamin Stoddert Middle School
“Jonathan approached [our] students with confidence and encouragement. His own performance poetry was an inspiration to the kids as well as fodder for a discussion about performance techniques. Jonathan’s role modeling not only set the example of a polished, well prepared performance, but it also served to build trust between him and the students. I highly recommend him to other educators and organizations that work to teach, to inspire and to engage youth.“
~ Jessica North Macie, Middle School Teacher, Barrie School
“In a day and age where education must compete with Ipods, Facebook, video games and other media gadgets, teachers have a tough time grabbing the attention of pre-teen students. That’s why I invited Jonathan Tucker to come to my 8th grade English class. He brought poetry to life! My students no longer thought poems were boring or something they couldn’t accomplish. One student who NEVER completed a class or homework assignment the entire year wrote a poem Mr. Tucker asked the students to pen entitled “I used to be…but now I am…” Not only did Mr. Tucker read his own work, he taught the students how to follow in his footsteps, how to look at poetry as therapy, as expression, as a future career.”
~Ms. Heather Hopson , 8th Grade Reading English Language Arts (RELA) Teacher, Benjamin Stoddert Middle School, Temple Hills, MD
stop looking at me and go read a book.