Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Celebrate Poetry Month: April (Ideas Galore!!)

As an English major, I often found poetry a bit dry. In many of my classes--Brit Lit, American Lit, International Lit, etc--we analyzed each stanza, line and verse. It was intense. After the methodical analysis, on the rare occasion I was asked to actually write poetry, I felt intimidated.

It was only after I began teaching that I learned to love poetry. Why?
  • At its heart, poetry is about playing...with words. 
  • Students who are overwhelmed by longer pieces of writing may find it easier to tackle a short poem. 
  • Poetry encourages creativity.
  • Poetry can match any mood. Humorous poems quickly capture student interest.
  • Poetry can enhance any subject. How? Here are some ideas...
Poetry and Math

While it might seem like an unusual combination, poetry can add a fun twist to math. We've written word equations using Amy Krouse Rosenthal's 2011 book, This Plus That: Life's Little Equations. The related blog entry includes a free handout to get students started on their own life equations.

Poems can describe mathematical concepts, like temperature, described in this blog post.

Books like  One, Two, Skip a Few! capture more math ideas in rhyme form. (See this blog post.) These poems can be enjoyed by young children or used as models for writing with older students.

More mathematical models for poetry are located in the book Mathematickles, and discussed here. And don't miss this multitude of resources for combining math and poetry.

Poetry and Drama 
Kids love to act. You can provide opportunities by acting out poems...especially those with humor. (Think Shel Silverstein.) My students enjoyed dramatizing "Smart" from Where the Sidewalk Ends.

Poetry and Art

Diamante poems are a perfect match for the 3-D art activity pictured at left. Spring and Mother's Day are great topics, but they can also be used for other seasons and holidays: fall, Christmas, winter, Valentine's Day, Easter, etc.

But my all-time favorite poetry lesson (pictured right) is one in which students use their 5-senses to write descriptive poetry, that they then mount on tissue painting backgrounds. 

Still stumped for poetry ideas? My friend Sherri at By Degrees has more fabulous ideas to make poetry come alive. (She sat by me during all those poetry analysis sessions in college. The woman knows her stuff!) ;)

How are you celebrating poetry this month? Comment below. ;)

    No comments:

    Post a Comment

    Thank you for leaving me a message. I love comments almost as much as I love chocolate! And I do LOVE chocolate. :)

    Related Posts with Thumbnails
    Blogging tips