Poetry update

I was reading Sheila’s post about writing poetry with her kids and realized that I forgot to update you all on my own poetry challenge.

First, I now read the poem that Becky posts on Fridays instead of skimming over it or skipping that post altogether. Sometime’s I need to force myself to do it because my instinct is still to skim or skip. I discover that “it will not kill me” (as I say to Tigger about eating the odd raisin/bit of zucchini/etc) and that it isn’t even painful. I need to keep doing this until my instinct shifts a bit.

Second, I am hosting Teatimes when it is my turn with our homeschool group. My first session of that was this past Tuesday. I went to the library on Monday and grabbed a few things off the shelf to add to the collection of poetry books that we have. The kids each brought something. I made tea and fruit punch. Tigger made cookies and picked flowers from the garden for a centrepiece (and chose a tablecloth). Some of the kids were more enthusiastic than others. Some read more fluently aloud than others (2 speak German at home and are less confident about their English, I think). But everyone read. I said it was okay to choose short things. I also said we all had to choose one poem new to us. Baby steps challenges. It was fun. Some of them were practically begging to read another one. After an hour or so I dismissed them to go play.

One thing I noticed is that Tigger likes what might be called grown up poems. The stuff I find vaguely scary.  I don’t know what the other kids thought but I noticed a real difference in style between what she chose to read and what others chose to read. She also like Shel Silverstein and John Hegley but she chose to read other stuff. This is clearly an area where I need to take a lead from her and not be scared of this stuff.

So the book Sheila mentioned about how to write poetry sounds like something we could maybe do in our December meeting or next term or something. Though apparently Tigger wrote some poetry when she was on holiday in the Gaspésie recently.

4 thoughts on “Poetry update

  1. When Max first started HSing, 5 years ago, I was clinging worriedly to my copy of the WTM, which advocated the memorization of poetry. I got some library books, picked some short poems, and went from there, not really knowing what to look for, but not really liking “kids” poetry (it all seemed so cheesy). Max liked Christina Rossetti and Robert Louis Stevenson, and found memorizing their stuff very easy, so they formed the bulk of his choices. By the time he’d been HSing a year we both felt far more easy with it all, not to mention having amassed several poetry books (2nd hand stores are often filled to bursting with old poetry books, by the way). I have to say though that Jack Prelutsky writes kids’ poetry in a way that makes it sound as though a kid might really have written it, which we all like and appreciate.


  2. This is a great way to get into poetry. I, too, got much more into it through Becky!! I look forwrad to reading some of your finds. We often finish out hte year with a poetry unit. HoneyGirl seems to lean toward the darker sort of poetry too, more like song lyrics. BuzzBoy is totally about nature poetry and self-analysis.


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