This site is for teachers, homeschoolers, parents, and newbie poets interested in children’s poetry.
For teachers and homeschoolers: There are lesson plans under “Free Stuff and More” as well as “Lesson Plans” button. Also, under “Poetry Book Reviews” this site offers quality poetry books for children that will satisfy the state standard for English Language Arts.
For parents: “Poetry Book Reviews” provide books for reading enjoyment between a parent and child. Reading increases the bond between parent and child. Jim Trelease, reading expert and author of The Read Aloud Handbook, says even the act of reading to your children increases their intelligence level.
For newbie poets: Go to the Site Map. There are free lessons under “Poetry Lessons” and “Haiku and Related Forms.” Check out the “Poetry Friday” listing. You can learn more tips, view poems, or links to poems.
If you are looking for a particular book on this site, you can go to the Index of Books and click on the book link there. These books are an alphabetical listing of poetry books you may use in your teaching or parenting efforts.
The reason teachers are encouraged to teach poetry is it levels the playing field for students who are challenged by traditional academic curriculum. Often students who struggle with their grades in composition are able to write very good poetry and improve their grade. Poetry is a very accessible form of writing. To learn how poetry contributes to your student’s education, clickhere.
The other advantage of poetry is that it helps build intrapersonal intelligence and self awareness skills. Included with self awareness is acquiring the ability to identify feelings. Poetry is a very intense form and may touch deep emotions. I believe the Columbine experience may have been averted if all people (parents, teachers, students, Harris, and Klebold) involved had been more aware of their feelings in the early stages of distress. Once the feelings were identified, steps could have been taken to deal with those feelings in a more appropriate manner.
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How does poetry meet the English Language Arts Standards?
Most state education Standards require the following skills:
Poetry came out of an oral tradition. The rhythm and rhyme helped storytellers remember epic stories like The Odyssey or The Iliad. However, in today’s busy world people prefer to swallow their stories in short forms. Poetry is an excellent technique to add to picture books, chapter books, YA, and other books. You can find age appropriate poetry for any grade level to read. Poems are meant to be spoken out loud to an audience. This provides practice for the speaking (speaker) and listening (audience) elements in the English Language Art Standards.
If you remember poetry as being stuffy and difficult, don’t worry:
Around 1950, there was a huge shift in poetry. Poets were experimenting with language. They wanted poems to sound more like the way people talk every day. This made poetry more accessible to the public. This style was called “free verse.” Rhyme was no longer a required element of poetry.
Today, reading poetry out loud is a fun way to introduce your child to the world of words.