Thursday, August 23, 2012

More on the Core

The Poetry Friday Anthology is unique for two main reasons: 

1. It features a year's worth of new original poems for every grade level K-5, with a poem per week by a variety of poets writing for young people.

2. Every poem in every grade level is also paired with learning activities that are anchored in the Common Core standards (or TEKS standards in Texas).

What are the expectations outlined in the Common Core?

In sharing poetry with kindergartners, we capitalize on their developing knowledge of language, their joy in learning and playing with words, and their emerging understanding of how words should be spoken, spelled, read, and written. First we focus on enjoyment and understanding, then we guide students in recognizing and responding to poems. We can explore the rhythm of poetry as well as the power of rhyme and the sounds of words.

With first graders, we shift slightly to guide students in understanding how poets express feelings in poetry and appeal to the senses through language. We can also help them understand and identify the words and phrases poets use to communicate emotions and convey sensory experiences through poetry.

In second grade, we guide students in responding to the rhythm of poetry and recognizing how rhyme is used in poems. We can also explore how repetition and alliteration can help shape a poem and how meaning emerges.

In third grade we support students in responding to poetry in various forms, exploring narrative poems that tell stories, lyrical poems that explore questions and emotions, and humorous poems that make us groan or laugh. We help students understand how poets use lines and stanzas to build poems in distinctive ways.

In fourth grade, we also guide students in responding to poetry in various forms, articulating themes from key ideas and details in the poems. In sharing poetry aloud and in print, we can assist students in understanding how structural elements such as verse, rhythm, and meter help shape a poem.

Finally, in fifth grade, the emphasis is to help students respond to poetry in various forms, articulate themes from key ideas and details in the poems, and explain how the poem’s speaker reflects upon a topic and shapes it with a particular point of view. We can guide students in understanding word meanings and how figurative language such as metaphors and similes function in poetry. We can also discuss how structural elements such as stanzas and line breaks help shape a poem and how visual and multimedia elements contribute to the meaning, tone, or beauty of a poem.

In a variety of meaningful and participatory ways, we can celebrate poetry while gently introducing and reinforcing key skills. (FYI: We also specify the TEKS standards in the TEKS edition of this book.)

The keys to remember are:
  • A poem should first be enjoyed for its own sake;
  • Presenting poems in participatory ways (in various choral strategies) gets your learner
        "into the poem;”
  • The main idea is to help your learner see and hear the poetic elements after enjoying the poem through multiple readings—and to come through the "back door" to skills.

Get your copy of The Poetry Friday Anthology to use all year long-- now.

1 comment:

  1. What a great overview of elements to highlight for each grade level, Sylvia - thank you.

    I just gave our Lower School media specialist a copy of the anthology, and she is eager to incorporate it into some of her weekly sessions. Another teacher is ordering it for her fourth grade class.