Friday, April 04, 2008

April is National Poetry Month - Get Inspired!

You probably already know that April is National Poetry Month, so why not use that as an excuse to spend a little more time with poetry, which is so often set aside in our busy schedules.

I love poetry books, and am amazed at how many fabulous poetry collections there are for children (not to mention adults)! We usually have a few poetry books in the family room for the kids to look through, but I have brought them all off the shelves and placed them in a basket next to the sofa for the month to encourage extra reading. I have challenged myself and kids to try to read at least one new poem per day this month... we'll see if we can keep on top of it. I'd like to encourage all of you to consider setting a poetry goal of your own for April too!

Below are some creative ideas I thought of to sneak some poetry into our lives....

1) Have books placed around the house where adults & kids sit to relax. Get some from the library if needed.

2) Add a poem or two to your daily family read aloud time.

3) Listen to poetry on CD, tape or MP3 players while driving

4) Don't forget the nursery rhymes for younger kids!

5) Subscribe to a "poem a day" email list.

6) Google "National Poetry Month" or "poetry for kids" for lots of great lesson plans and ideas.

7) Try to attend a poetry reading, or have your own.

8) Encourage children to read a favorite poem in any talent shows or programs they may have coming up.

9) Read the biography of a poet you or your children especially like.

10) Write some poems just for fun!

11) Place a poem in a lunchbox, current book being read, etc as a surprise.

12) Get that magnetic poetry kit back onto the fridge! Or check out this online version the kids might enjoy: online magnetic poetry

13) Encourage kids with their own email accounts to select a few favorite poetic lines to use as their email signature/footer, and don't forget your own!

14) Celebrate the first national Poem In Your Pocket Day April 17th! The idea is simple: select a poem you love during National Poetry Month then carry it with you to share with co-workers, family, and friends on April 17. Poems from pockets will be unfolded throughout the day with events in parks, libraries, schools, workplaces, and bookstores. Create your own Poem In Your Pocket Day event

Here is a link where you can make a special stapleless book to carry for this very purpose (for extra fun).

Hope I have inspired you, just a teeny bit?

PS The Dollar Tree is currently carrying a few of Mattie Stepanek's poetry collections. His work is beautiful and inspiring. What an amazing child.

Springtime is upon us.
The birds celebrate her return with festive song,
and murmuring streams are softly caressed by the breezes.
Thunderstorms, those heralds of Spring, roar, casting their dark mantle over heaven,
Then they die away to silence, and the birds take up their charming songs once more.
--ANTONIO VIVALDI from the Four Seasons

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