Put Poetry in Motion to Power Up the Learning Process

Kids love to sing and swing.

Kids love to sing and swing. Put poetry in motion to power up the learning process.

Hi and welcome back to Attentionology for K – 5 Teachers!

Kids love to sing and swing.

Music and movement catch children’s attention and energize them.

Use music and movement to power up the learning process at the start of a school day or when students’ energy slips after lunch.

How?

Rock to the Rhythm of Writing – Put poetry into motion by inviting kids to “rock to the rhythm of writing” as you recite fun rhymes or free verse poems.

Students in grades 3 – 5 easily grasp the concept of powering up with a poem.

Encourage them to clap lightly (so as not to drown out your voice) or snap their fingers as you recite

A Pocket Poem by Bobbi Katz (shown below)

With a poem in your pocket

and

a pocket in your pants

you can rock with new rhythms.

You can skip.

You can dance.

And wherever you go,

and whatever you do,

that poem in your pocket is going there, too.

You could misplace your homework.

You could lose your left shoe.

But that poem in your pocket will be part of you.

And nothing can take it.

And nothing can break it.

That poem in your pocket

becomes

part of…

YOU!

Inviting students in grades K – 2 to “act out” what a poem is about is another engaging way to put poetry in motion to power up the learning process.

Act Out a Verse in a Poetry in Motion Circle – Ask children to join you in “a poetry in motion circle” on the floor in your classroom.

Explain that you want the class to “act out” what the poem that you’re ready to recite is about.

Offer an example as you announce the poem’s title: Keep A Poem In Your Pocket by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers (shown below)

Reach into your own pocket (or imaginary pocket if you need one) and pretend to pull out a poem.

Put a big smile on your face and ask everyone to reach into their pockets to find a poem, too.

You can ask students to stay seated or stand in place to “act out” the poem.

"Look! I just found a poem in my pocket!"

“Look! I just found a poem in my pocket!”

Keep A Poem In Your Pocket

Keep a poem in your pocket

And a picture in your head

And you’ll never feel lonely

At night when you’re in bed.

The little poem will sing to you

The little picture bring to you

A dozen dreams to dance to you

At night when you’re in bed.

So…

Keep a picture in your pocket

And a poem in your head

And you’ll never feel lonely

At night when you’re in bed.

Celebrate Poetry Month Together – April is “National Poetry Month,” at least in the United States; a designation that began in 1996.

Wherever you are, join in celebrating Poem In Your Pocket Day on April 30.

Wherever you are, join in celebrating Poem In Your Pocket Day on April 30.

I’ve always thought that national monthly “designations” are a bit limiting, but I understand that they do serve a purpose.

In our global community, I prefer to share the emphasis on the importance of poetry, for example, worldwide and not just this month, but every month!

Putting poetry in motion to power up the learning process is a tool that teachers can use anytime, anywhere.

Tailor the plan to suit your language and curriculum.

At the end of this month, again at least in the US, teachers and students across the states will celebrate Poem in Your Pocket Day.

Simulate Writing to Put Poetry in Motion – Another way to power up the learning process with poetry is to invite students to accompany your recitation by simulating the motion of writing.

Ask kids to extend their arms with a pencil in hand (careful not to poke anyone in the eye, of course).

Instruct them to “act out” the motion of writing to the rhythm of the poem you recite.

Tell students to listen to the language of the poem as if they had created it themselves.

Write Like the Ocean – Open a quick discussion about how writing is like the waves of an ocean.

Sometimes words rush in and crash on paper with powerful expression.

Other times, words and phrases break gently on a line as the writing tide comes in through the poet’s hand.

Creative discussions like this prompt creative and critical thinking – skills that apply to putting poetry in motion to power up the learning process.

Introducing students to poetry from different countries and cultures – now possible with just a few keystrokes for those who can access online resources – is an ear-catching way to incorporate global education into your class’ academic experience.

The fun of it is the poetry in motion.  Children learn best when they use all of their senses.

Remember, you don’t need to be a magician to work magic in any instructional setting!

Talk with you again soon,

Barbara ♥ The Lovable Poet

 

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  6. […] kids, too, that many forms of writing (especially poetry) are meant to be heard as well as […]

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Barbara Cleary has been serving as a resource to hundreds of educators for more than 25 years. An award-winning writer, producer, teacher, and trainer, Barbara’s focus is on offering easy, fun tools and tricks that support K-5 curricula and assist teachers with classroom management.
Quick tips for common classroom conundrums: K-5
Situation: Young students are getting noisy while you’re trying to teach.

Solution: Hold up "Listen Star," a toy magic wand that you’ve designated to be a cue for quiet. Tell the class, "When you see our friend, 'Listen Star' dance across the classroom sky, that’s your signal to HUSH for a moment."

Related Posts: Let "Listen Star" Work Magic for You