If you want to teach me to write, first you have to love me. ~AVI

Monday, March 28, 2011

Looking Forward to April - SOLS Day 28

“Poetry is not words that rhyme. It’s words that feel true.” ~ Georgia Heard

I am ready for a new month, a new season, and some POETRY. We have continued to pop a poem in here and there. We have stopped by to visit the Poem Farm where Amy LV is approaching the finish line in her Poetry Year. I hope she hears us cheering for her accomplishments and also fearing that we will miss her gifts of poems and writing advice.

My love affair with poetry started many years ago during a Children’s Literature course in college. My passion for books and poems grew even more when our children were born. Years later when I started teaching, literature and poetry became my lifelines, my “bag of tricks”. However, I quickly learned that poetry was not something to save for a unit or a month in the spring. The value of poetry and the power of poetry needed a special place in the classroom culture. And heck I needed to do something with the poems I was collecting like they were rare, vintage baseball cards. I was constantly discovering new poets or finding out that some of my favorite authors also wrote fabulous poetry. This year, I tucked a poem bookmark in the envelope with my August “back to school” letter. Students had a head start on their 4th grade collection and already knew their teacher was a poetry lover. There are still a few doubters, but by this point in the year most of my students have been bitten by the poetry bug.

As we march towards April I am looking forward to the month that celebrates all things poetry. Even though I believe that poetry deserves our respect and attention every month it’s fun to put poems in the limelight for a month. This year I am hoping to involve more classes in Poem in Your Pocket Day on Thursday, April 14, 2011. I am especially excited to celebrate this event just two days before our spring break. How cool would it be to have the momentum for all things poetry get tucked into backpacks and suitcases? A Poetry Vacation hmmmI will have to think about this a bit.

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