Friday, September 07, 2012
Poetry Friday in the Classroom
For my mini-lesson today in Reading Workshop, I'll project the 5th grade Week 2 poem from
The Poetry Friday Anthology (Common Core ALL GRADES (K-5) e-book) (The Poetry Friday Anthology E-book Series (Grade-by-Grade))
It's a fun poem by Irene Latham in the voice of a backpack. It will get us talking about personification.
And about that talk...I've had great success with what Ellin Keene calls "Open Forum" in her book, Talk About Understanding: Rethinking Classroom Talk to Enhance Comprehension
When we're sitting in a circle (in chairs or on the floor) and I call for an "Open Forum" discussion, it lets the students know that they will "pass the conversational ball" from student to student, rather than every comment going through me. They do not raise their hands to take turns. After the first person speaks, the next person says that person's name, along with a statement of agreement or disagreement, or some other conversational segue. ("Billy, I agree with what you said about your backpack. I had the same thing happen one time...")
During the independent reading time on Poetry Friday, students read poetry alone or with a partner (or two). The goal is for everyone to participate in the oral reading of a poem at the end of the period during share time. Eventually, we will work together to develop a rubric to use for self- and teacher-evaluation of their presentations, but at the beginning, it's all for fun.
Last week, I limited the students to only the books in my poetry collection by Douglas Florian and J. Patrick Lewis, so this week I will choose books by topic -- perhaps only putting out books of nature poetry from which to choose. And, in keeping with the poem in the mini-lesson, we'll keep our eyes peeled for examples of personification the poems we read.
Poetry Friday is fairly informal and definitely a lot of fun. Even if you don't have a large collection of poetry in your classroom library, you can check 20-30 books out of your school or public library and be ready to have fun reading poetry once a week throughout the school year. Infect your class with your enthusiasm for having fun with poetry!
For fun with Poetry Friday on the blogs, go to Katya's blog, Write. Sketch. Repeat. for the Poetry Friday roundup of posts.