Monday, March 24, 2014

School Age Program: “You’re a Poet Though You Might Not Know It!” Grade K-6 National Poetry Month Program

“Every day when I go out, I fill my shoes with sauerkraut....”
Come read and create some wild, wacky,
and wonderful poems with us!   
(If you have a favorite poem, bring it along!)  
Special guest: local writer Randi Clarken.

This was a program to encourage kids to play with poetry then write some of their own.  We had a local poet join us, but that portion could be omitted.

Poetry Program – You’re a Poet though You May Not Know It  “Today we’re going to write some poems of our own -- but first we’re going to hear some poems to get our own creative ideas flowing and get some tips about poetry-writing…”

Poetry Warm-up:

2011: Introduced a “Real Live Poet” Randi Clarken author of Mugging for the Camera (her poems indicated by RJC below)

Shared these tips from Jack Prelutsky Pizza, Pigs, and Poetry – anyone know of him (show his books) –keeps writing notebook (used page numbers below -- 2015 during spring break, kids a bit antsy so I only some of these))

1. Write about something that really happened (ok to exaggerate though!):
Ø p.5 “I Wonder Why Dad is so Thoroughly Mad”
Ø p.18 “My Mother’s Rules”
Ø another poem about his mom’s rules: p.23 “Deep in Our Refrigerator”
Ø RJC p. 17 “Under My Bed”

2. Brothers, Sisters, Pets, Friends and Toys make good subjects:
Ø p.30 “My Baby Brother” (also “Brother” p. 65 in Sunflakes selected by Lilian Moore)
Ø p.58 “Oh, Teddy Bear”
Ø p.64 “My Brother Shaved His Teddy Bear”
Ø RJC p. 32 “Rock Paper Scissors”

3. Poems don’t have to be long:
Ø p.33 “Oysters”
Ø (also “The Tickle Poem” p.14 in Sunflakes )
Ø RJC p. 115 “A Very Tiny Poem”
Ø RJC p. 123 “Little Willie Number 7”

4. But you may revisit a subject if you find you have more to say:
Ø P.35 “Do Oysters Sneeze”
Ø RJC p.27 “Closet Avoidance”

5. Images can inspire poems:
Ø p.43 “We’re Fearless Flying Hot Dogs”
Ø p.39 “Forty Performing Bananas” (re-writing playing with language – read section),
Ø p.53 “I’m Building a Bridge of Bananas”
Ø p.74 “The Turkey Shot Out of the Oven”
Ø RJC p. 69 “Were Rabbits”
Ø RJC p.72 “Speaking Of…How to Make a Dust Bunny Happy”

And poems can inspire images:
Ø Show Shape/Concrete Poems from Doodle Dandies by J. Patrick Lewis & A Poke in the Eye by Paul B. Janeczko

2011: RJC talked a little more about writing poems…
2015 added instead:
6. Surprise ending fun:
from Lunch Money and Other Poems About School by Carol Diggory Shields
p. 16 "School Daze Rap"
p. 35 "Clock Watching"

Hands on – Writing our Own Poems – Options:

o Using what we just discussed, write a poem
o If you need ideas, try: “I am” poem (handout below, more at:
o Poetry Starter (source unknown): “Every day when I go out, I fill my shoes with sauerkraut…. (supply a page with these two lines as the starter )
o Acrostic Poem (Handout below)
o How to Write an "I Can't Write a Poem" Poem (Handout
o Write a Structured Poem – ideas from the book “A Kick in the Head”

2017 added:

o Write a Shape Poem|

Image result for concrete poems bicycleThis and many more here:
o Write a Blackout Poem


Additional Resources:  Jack Prelutsky and others  lots of poetry ideas based on HMH books Bruce Lansky’s poems, contests, ideas poems, contests, ideas + a rhyming dictionary place for kids to publish their own (jack prelutsky’s writer’s workshop)

Display books: Imagine a Day …Night… Place – Sarah Thomson & Rob Gonsalves,  A River of Words JB Williams, Sad Underwear Judith Viorst, lots of other poetry books…You might also share some other fun poetry collections -- I love Lunch Money by Carol Diggory Shields (lots of funny poems about school -- they love the surprise ending to "Clock-Watching") , Dinosaur Dinner by Dennis Lee (try having them make up new verses to "Alligator Pie" (Judy Freeman put it to music -- feel free to give me a call if you want the tune)), and the collection Sunflakes (try the poem "Brother" for some sibling laughs!) 


Acrostic Poem  (I wrote these instructions out for the kids)
An Acrostic Poem is a poem that uses a name or a word to begin each line in a poem. Write your name or a word vertically down the left side of this sheet of paper. Begin each line of the poem with each letter of your name and write about yourself. After you are finished, decorate the page with your favorite things. (If you would like to get your poem back, please write your name & phone number on the back.)

4.2015 -- did without special guest poet, deleted RJC poems above, added 2015: notes.


4.2017: opened with Prelutsky’s “I Told the Wizard to His Face,” did “Yankee Doodle” rhyming game, talked about different kinds of poetry. Read some family exageration poems from Pizza, Pigs & Poetry, and “Brother” and “Spring Is” from Sunflakes, expanded upon “Alligator Pie”, shared some shape poems from Doodle Dandies and A Poke in the I and showed some examples of blackout poems.  Kids then created poems of their choice – shape poems, black out poems, rhyming poems or acrostic poems.



new in 2016 Daniel Finds a Poem – Micha Archer

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