Thursday, August 12, 2010


Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out by Shel Silverstein 

Sick by Shel Silverstein

One of the cutest ways I found to get students interested in poetry was to memorize part of it.
Find a poem that is really cute, maybe from Shel Silverstein, and make sure there are enough parts for each child to learn.
Copy the poem and then blow it up so younger students can read it easily.  Keep a master copy for yourself to carry around.
Cut the sections apart and assign a part to each child.
I would hand out the parts in number or alphabetical order.  Students would have a week to learn and then we would start.  I would have them recite when we were waiting (to enter another class like P.E., Art, Spanish...), lined up to enter class after recess/restroom breaks, during times we had to do Tornado Drills or Fire Drills.  This activity kept everyone very quiet and attentive because they would listen for their turn and also to hear the entire poem.
Some great poems to use:  Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out, Sick, and Bear In There.  All three are by Shel Silverstein.  Eventually the students would start choosing the poems we might learn next.  The exciting part of this...quite a few of the students had the entire poem memorized just by listening to our recitations.  This is also a great way to use up the minute or so you have at odd times of the day.  Once we were about finished with the poem, we would have each student write their lines they memorized and illustrate.  These became poetry books in our Book Corner.  Students samples are shown.

Bear in There by Shel Silverstein

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