April is National Poetry Month, and to celebrate, I’ve decided to share a daily poetry tidbit on Facebook. If you missed the 1st week, here is a wrap-up of everything that happened on Facebook. Join me there to keep up with the daily posts.
Up first, I kicked off the month by reading one of my all time favorite poems: “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning” by John Donne. Click the link to watch the reading.
On Tuesday, I put out a prompt that kids and adults can enjoy. Give it a shot and let me now what you wrote!
Look around and take notice of what you see going on in nature. It is probably alive with signs of spring. Make a list of all the life you see, the sounds, the smells, the textures. Now, turn that into a spring-inspired poem. (We can share them at the end of the week)
William Wordsworth did something similar when he wrote: “Written in March.” Look and listen to his observance of spring:
Written In March
by William Wordsworth
The cock is crowing,
The stream is flowing,
The small birds twitter,
The lake doth glitter
The green field sleeps in the sun;
The oldest and youngest
Are at work with the strongest;
The cattle are grazing,
Their heads never raising;
There are forty feeding like one!
Like an army defeated
The snow hath retreated,
And now doth fare ill
On the top of the bare hill;
The plowboy is whooping- anon-anon:
There’s joy in the mountains;
There’s life in the fountains;
Small clouds are sailing,
Blue sky prevailing;
The rain is over and gone!
(Prompt inspired by Raising Little Shoots http://buff.ly/2o0w7nv Exploring Nature With Children)
On Wednesday, I shared various websites I have found inspiring. Hopefully, you will too!
Where can you find fun and engaging poetry resources for your family and/or homeschool?
Oh! There are so many!
You can, of course, search the endless depths of Pinterest and find oodles of inspiration. But here are a few great resources from legit sites.
1) Write to a poet!
Poets.org hosts this wonderful event where students listen to poets read their work, then respond to the poems via letter. Described as “a multimedia education project that invites young people in grades five through twelve to write letters in response to poems written and read by some of the award-winning poets who serve on the Academy of American Poets Board of Chancellors,” the Dear Poet Project is a neat way for young writers to engage with living poets. Read more about it here OR check out the Lesson Plans available.
While there, be sure to check out the awesome collection of resources for teachers (especially the classroom calendar which has links for poet birthdays and more!).
2) Poetry 180
“Poetry 180 is designed to make it easy for students to hear or read a poem on each of the 180 days of the school year. ” YES!!! Poetry was made for the ears, so pop on over to this site (which was initiated by Billy Collins, Former Poet Laureate of the United States) and take a listen to some great poems! They even have a page to help you know how to read poetry out loud.
3) And while you’re listening to great poetry, why not adopt this as a family habit? Check out the wonderful Poetry Teatime. Begun by Julie Bogart and her team at Brave Writer, this site encourages and showcases a language rich environment for homeschooling families. BUT you don’t have to homeschool to adopt this bit of magic. We have been doing teatimes for a while and my kids LOVE it and have lost all fear of poetry. Sometimes we read silly poems; sometimes we read serious poems; sometimes we even write poems. Wonder what it looks like? Scroll through the lovely hashtag #poetryteatime on IG and be inspired!
And should you decide to have your own poetry tea time, here is a wonderful book of tried and true poems that your family will love: The 20th Century Children’s Poetry Treasury (aff link).
Well, I could just keep going and keep going! I hope you enjoy these links!
On Thursday, I shared two poems: one classic and one modern.
The hope is that these two poems will generate some discussion about similarities and differences–whether that be in theme, style, content, or some other poetic quality. I hope you enjoy reading them as much I as enjoyed putting them together!
Enjoy these two poems.
A classic Wordsworth poem and one written not so long ago by Wendell Berry.
Want to take it deeper? Discuss the speakers’ thoughts on man and nature. How are those views similar? How are they different? What frustrates each speaker? Does either speaker have a solution to his individual problem?
This week, I decided to share a few poetry reading tips.
While you’re reading poetry this month, why not improve your Poetry Reading Skills?
Believe it or not, how you approach and read a poem can sometimes drastically change your understanding. Here are a few tips to help you this month.