Saturday, April 29, 2017

School Age Program: Play with Poetry

This was a program to encourage kids to play with poetry then write some of their own.  (K-5 at Bridgewater, K-2 at Bedminster School)

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…”

.2017: Order varied in some groups

  • Opened with Prelutsky’s “I Told the Wizard to His Face” from Monday’s Troll (skipped at Bedminster, book unavailable, instead opened with short poems “The Tickle Rhyme,” “Glowworm,” & “Bugs” (p.13-14) from Sunflakes)
  • Talked about different kinds of poetry – asked what made a poem (sometimes rhyme & rhythm, form, imaginative language).
  • Played “Yankee Doodle” rhyming game --  Newfangled Yankee Doodle Poems
  • Shared these tips from Jack Prelutsky Pizza, Pigs, and Poetry – anyone know of him (show his books) –keeps writing notebook (used page numbers below)

    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”

    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”

    Poems don’t have to be long:
    Ø p.33 “Oysters”
    Ø (also “The Tickle Poem” p.14 in Sunflakes )

    Images can inspire poems:
    Ø p.65 “Spring Is” in Sunflakes selected by Lilian Moore)
    Ø p.43 “We’re Fearless Flying Hot Dogs”  (skipped some of these, no time)
    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”
  • Poems can inspire images:
    Ø Show Shape/Concrete Poems from Doodle Dandies (First Burst of Spring, Giraffe, Butterfly) by J. Patrick Lewis & A Poke in the Eye (p.2,3,17,20,21,27), by Paul B. Janeczko
  • Make up new verses to poem/song “Alligator Pie” from Dinosaur Dinner by Dennis Lee  (Judy Freeman put it to music -- feel free to give me a call if you want the tune), having kids select food, a rhyming consequence activity, a rhyming object and a non-rhyming related object, e.g.
  • Alligator CHEESE, Alligator CHEESE
    If I don’t get some, I guess I’m gonna SNEEZE.
    Take away my GARDEN, Take away my BEES,
    But don’t take away my Alligator CHEESE!

  • Shared two pet poems (p. 19 & 14)  from Who Swallowed Harold by Susan Pearson then read the mixed-up menagerie poems from Cock-a-Doodle Moooo! by Keith DuQuette and showed example of acrostic & blackout poems. 
  • Kids then created poems of their choice – combo animal poems, shape poems, blackout poems, alligator pie new verses, rhyming poems or acrostic poems. 
  • 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”

o Write a Shape Poem|

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



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.)


4.2017 Bridgewater:




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… New  in 2016 Daniel Finds a Poem – Micha Archer


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