Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Poetry for schoolkids

So how many of you know teachers?

One of the ways we can reintroduce enjoyable poetry to the mass of readers is through schools. Most schools I know of encourage their teachers to put a "what is Mr. So and So reading?" spot on their walls or bulletin boards, etc. From experience as a teacher, kids even ask to borrow such books -- especially if they're reviewed or rated.

So what's a good book of (dare we hope narrative) contemporary verse we can get into the hands of teachers (and by extension, kids)?

How do we get it to them? MLA conference?

Note: my wife is now reading the Madeline books to our daughters -- those are books of poetry. . .


Kirby Olson said...

Who gets to offer an MLA conference is very tightly controlled by communist committees. It would be like trying to get an article in Pravda under Stalin's reign.

Tamarah said...

I start with Dr. Seuss even in writing workshops I've taught. He has a wonderful grasp of meter. Silverstein is fantastic for the expansion of imagination. For my kids I've found books of children's poetry, finger poems, some older poems in my own books, or books I find in the bookstore ("There's A Cow in the Road" is fantastic). On a small scale: For high school, I would have a stack of different poetry books from a variety of genres and have the students read short bios of the authors and pick which poetry they want to study. Through presentations, each student will hear how that poetry is appreciated by someone, which might encourage them to appreciate more on their own.

Those are some ideas, but they're not implementable until teachers are also interested in teaching poetry.