April is National Poetry Month. Here at In Our Write Minds, I’m posting a different poetry activity or tip list each week to help you incorporate more poetry into your homeschooling.
Pick one or two of these activities to do with your children to celebrate this special literary month. Together, discover the joy of poetry! [Psst ... this post contains affiliate links to poetry resources I'm confident your family will enjoy.]
1. Write Magnetic Poems
Kick off National Poetry Month with your kids by putting up a magnet board (a cookie sheet works great) with magnetic words and encourage family members to create their own poems. Get them started by reading short poems together and posting some of them near the magnet board.
- First Words Magnetic Poetry Kit – gr. K-2
- Magnetic Poetry Kid’s Kit - gr. 2-6
- Kids’ Magnetic Rhyme Maker Kit - gr. 2-6
- Genius Magnetic Poetry Kit - teens and adults
2. Enter a Poetry Contest
Encourage your budding poets to enter a contest. Here are several to consider:
- Poetic Power – spring deadline is usually in April
- America Library of Poetry contest – deadline April 30
- Kids’ Hummingbird Poetry Contest – deadline September 30
Warning: There are lots of poetry contests out there, but they’re not all worth entering. Steer clear of bad poetry contests!
3. Hit the Library
April 8-14, 2012 also happens to be National Library Week! Check out several poetry anthologies from the library and keep them in a basket or on a shelf, along with pads of paper and pencils.
Encourage your children to read several poems each day, writing down the titles and authors of their favorites. When you return the anthologies, have each child check out a book of poems by just one author. For example, if your child wrote down a Shel Silverstein poem on her list, she may want to check out Where the Sidewalk Ends, A Light in the Attic, or another book of poetry by Silverstein.
4. Host a Poetry Slam
A poetry slam is a competition where poets read or recite their original work. Host an open mic night or poetry slam where children are encouraged to share their own poems with family, friends, or your homeschool group. Enjoy homemade treats and present awards for “Most Original Poem,” “Best Use of Rhyme,” “Happiest Poem,” or “Best Alliteration.” Give these a try! When you enjoy, share, and celebrate poetry, you begin building a lifelong appreciation for this well-loved genre.
Share one thing your family or classroom is doing to celebrate poetry this month.