For this weeks entry I spent time reading some of my peer’s blog entries. One that struck home for me was Entry #7 from The Literally Literacy Blog. In this entry she speaks about what she learned as she researched and read more about the genre of poetry. This struck me, as poetry is a genre that I feel uneasy with. As a kid I thought of it as “easy,” as it can sometimes be shorter than a narrative essay. But now that I am a more knowledgeable writer, I feel that poetry is not “easy” any more, and I often struggle writing poetry more than writing longer texts. This is probably due to less experience with this genre. This blog entry offered many suggestions that will help me feel more confident as a teacher of poetry, as I work on becoming a more confident poet myself.
Ashley was sure to explain early on in her entry that poetry does not need to rhyme. As a kid, I always thought this. I liked how she suggested that teachers stress that the message of the poem is more important than the rhyming. She also suggests that teachers share a wide variety of poems with students to show them that there is much more to poetry than rhyming. I also liked her suggesting starting with a simple formula poem to help ease the students into the genre and help build up their confidence as poets. This suggestion made me think of the exercise we did in this class the very first day. The formula poem of “If I were in charge of the world” would be a great starter activity for a poetry unit. This activity would be fun for students, engage them, is about something that is meaningful to them, and will show them that they in fact are poets!
I also really like the examples she provided to incorporate poetry into other subjects. I think this would be a great way to reach the different learning styles of your students, and would be a great option when the teacher gives different choices for an assessment. Lastly, her suggestions for grading poetry were great. She suggests using a portfolio and letting students select their best work for assessment. I also suggest using a rubric at times, and focusing on the meaning of the work and the effort the child put into it.