Friday, May 25, 2012

Poetry Friday: Magic!

Poetry Friday this year was magic! The students looked forward to celebrating poetry. We started every Friday with a poem and this message on the board:
-Read around the poem
-Think around the poem
-Share a poem & Love a poem
The students learned through constant modeling first trimester what those 4 phrases meant.  What 5th grader doesn't love breaking the rules of grammar which is what poetry can be about?  What 5th grader doesn't love reading the poem "Boogers" and laughing hysterically?  We built our community of poets and finally by winter we had a few students writing original poems and sharing them each week. We responded with all of us clicking our fingers loudly. The class actually decided original poems clicking and poems shared from books clapping. 

We celebrated poetry third trimester with students writing their first poem of the year with teacher directions. My all time favorite poetry book is When Riddles Come Rumbling Poems to Ponder. A perfect subtitle for this book. The word ponder allows students time to think. I used the book as a mentor text all year. I first introduced it to my class with context clues. Next I used it for strong description (adjectives). Then I used it in our Earth and Space science class. We used it for defining the word: attributes before we started discussing characterization in reading. Finally I had the students write their own poems and that is when Love a poem came alive this year!  Poetry Friday is magic!

Our celebration of class poems for graduation to share with parents.

Hidden title:  Apples

Thank you Linda for hosting Poetry Friday at TeacherDance 


  1. What a great experience for your students!

  2. I'm with you about doing poetry all year. We had poetry Thursdays, and our anthologies are almost you, I find that there are so many ways of exploring poetry with our kids.

  3. Thanks Melissa and Tara for your comments. Poetry was a success this year-different philosophy. More about enjoyment and writing around the poems then pushing towards testing poems. MUCH BETTER!!

  4. Maria,

    I like the questions you posed each Friday and the routine you established.

    I love using Rebecca Kai Dotlich's poems. We started the year with her poem "Sky Wish".

  5. Hear, hear for all you amazing teachers! How great that your students "caught" your joy. I had the pleasure of being with Rebecca again last week in PA at a Highlights workshop; she'd love to know her work helped make a great year for poetry happen in your classroom.

  6. I loved doing so much poetry when I was in the classroom. Now that I'm a literacy coach, I nudge as much as I can, but some teachers aren't in love with poetry as much as I am. I keep trying. I loved seeing all that you did with your students, & can see that they really love the time with you & poetry. Thanks!

  7. Thanks for sharing your Poetry Friday magic. Wonderful!

  8. What great questions for your students to ponder. It sounds like this was a good poetry year for all. Thanks for sharing your experiences. Enjoy your break, read poetry, and relax.

  9. Thanks everyone for your comments. Comments mean so much to me not only as a writer but also as a reflector of my Poetry Friday year. I think I am going to try and post some more on Fridays about our experiences.

  10. Maria,
    I have to agree. We love love love poetry Friday. This year as we were beginning to talk about our favorite books for the year one of my students thought we should also choose our favorite poem the year. Oh my! That would be a task. It looks like your 5th graders loved poetry too. Thanks for sharing "When Riddles Come Rumbling." I'm going to have to check it out.