This semester I have been inspired by the authentic ways that I have learned to teach poetry to children in a meaningful way. Through the readings of Poetry Matters, For the Good of the Earth and Sun, Awakening the Heart, and in class discussions, I feel more confident in my ability to teach children poetry. Initially I was terrified at the thought of teaching children a concept that I never fully understood myself, but through this course I have discovered that poetry is so much more than I have ever imagined.
In the Poetry Matters text by Ralph Fletcher, I always look forward to the quotes he uses at the beginning of the chapter to set the tone for the reader. One of my personal favorites is on the first page of chapter 12. The quote by Carlos Fuentes states “Every poem is a blow against silence.”(Poetry Matters, 2016) I found this quote to be extremely powerful when I think about myself teaching poetry to students. When you are young it can be difficult to find the right words to express your thoughts. As a student I wish that I would have been introduced to poetry in a different way because I believe poetry truly could have saved me from drowning in life’s struggles.
When I think of myself as a young student, I viewed poetry as a difficult concept because I never knew the exact message that the poet was trying to convey. We spent a ton of class time analyzing poems and tried to figure out what the poet’s deeper message was to the reader. I specifically remember being asked “What was the poet thinking when he/she wrote the poem?” I never knew how to answer this question, but I thought that the poet might have been writing the poem just for the love of poetry. However, now I realize that poetry is not meant to be tied do...
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... of words to express profound ideas and statements.
On page 60 of Poetry Matters, Fletcher states: “a poem is an impressionistic piece of writing, a word painting in which the writer tries to capture a moment, an image.” (Fletcher, 2016) I relish this quote because this hold true in so many of the poems I have collected throughout the semester. Fletcher also writes, “At the most important moments, when everyone else is silent, poetry rises to speak.” (Fletcher, 2016) I believe that this quote really speaks for itself because poets say so much with only using a few meaningful words. I hope that my future students will fall in love with poetry and all it has to offer. I am eager to implement the author’s strategies and suggestions in my future classroom. I will keep their books and their beautiful words close to my heart as I begin my new and exciting adventure.
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