Poetry In The Preschool Classroom!
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You Need More Poetry in Your Classroom!
In honor of National Poetry Month, I want to spend some time celebrating poetry in our lives and our children’s lives. Poetry is a great way to play with imagery and help children listen to language in a new way. It’s a way to close your eyes, slow down your mind and focus on language.
Here’s a great definition of poetry you can introduce and puzzle over in your classroom, from the 42eXplore web site:
“Poetry is a kind of writing, usually in verse. Poetry verse is set out in short lines with words put together in rhythm or rhyme or both. Poetry is about a writer sharing with the reader an experience or strong feelings. Poems are written with words chosen for their sounds and beauty as well as their meaning.”
Young children love rhyming poetry, and you can easily write a class poem as part of a shared writing activity at large group time. It’s a great way to play with new vocabulary and practice rhyming. Or maybe your class is ready for some funny poems- check out a few here!
Start with some classics, such as William Makepeace Thackeray or Robert Louis Stevenson. To get you started, download printable copies of a few classic poems are available here, thanks to storyit.com
You can explore contemporary poets such as Shel Silverstein, Kristin O’Connell George or Kenn Nesbitt, to name a few. Check out your local library or possibly your own book collection for some poetry to share in your classroom.
Maybe there’s a local celebration of poetry. For instance, the city of Tulsa, OK is hosting a poetry walk at the Oklahoma Botanical Centennial Garden, focusing on young poets. Check your local newspapers and web sites for poetry activities in your area.
We all benefit from more poetry in our lives. Make it a point to read and write more poetry in your classroom. Download "Bed in Summer" word play and leave a comment sharing your favorite poem!