If William Shakespeare can write an entire play ~ Richard III ~ in sonnet form, then why shouldn’t the eighth graders write their own? So, what exactly makes a sonnet a sonnet?

+ 14-line poem
+ first 12 lines develop the main idea
+ final two lines conclude it in the form of a couplet
+ 10 syllables per line, preferably written in iambic pentameter
+ rhyme scheme: abab, cdcd, efef, gg

The eighth grades took on the challenge of writing a sonnet together as a class with two added stipulations:

it had to be completed in one class period
the subject: Love

First, we enjoyed reading Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18: “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” Then, we set to work, brainstorming together the final word in each line, making sure we were following the rhyme scheme. Next, we worked in small groups to write four lines each, without knowing what the other two groups were creating. Then, as a whole group, we combined the lines together before crafting the concluding couplet. We tested ourselves: Was each line 10 syllables? Was iambic pentameter incorporated? Was the overall message about love? Did we develop a main idea and bring it to a conclusion?

Here’s what we came up with:


Who Needs Love When You Have Minecraft?

Shakespearean Sonnet written by 1st Period English 8

You are the one to cause my heart leaping
My love, I could not love you any more
To no one else I dare allow speaking
Forever love, fain I always adore
You have left me with my heart shattering
But do you care about my feelings? No.
You walked out with my Xbox clattering
And then I hit a supremely hard woe
You were not my first, I thought you’d be last
Sitting all alone drinking my canned Coke
I loved you then, but now you are my past
I was oblivious, now I am woke
You once were my one and only life raft
Get out of my room! I’m playing Minecraft.


Stalker Man

Shakespearean Sonnet written by 2nd period English 8

Can I compare thee to my darling dog?
Well, love is a wonderous thing, my dear
Thou art sweeter than thy hideous hog
It’s true my heart will always hold you near
One thing that brings me joy it is thy face
It shines as bright as if it were a start
Your beauty is all that I want to chase
I am so sad every time you are afar
I will shower you with much love and lust
I swear I cost more than a single dime
I hope I will forever have your trust
I will love you until the end of time
I believe what led me to you was fate
My love for you is my true, finest trait.

~Mrs. Robb, Upper School English Teacher

The Class of 2020 invites you and other family members and friends to attend their performance of Shakespeare’s Richard III on Friday, November 15, at 7:00 p.m. in the Niemann Auditorium.

Other Performance Dates/Times:
Thursday, November 14 at 12:30 p.m.
Friday, November 15 at 12:30 p.m.