Poetry is a wonderful way for students to build fluency and accuracy while reading. I was a little upset when they pulled it out of our second grade curriculum. I knew I wanted to incorporate it into our classroom, even if I wasn’t explicitly teaching it to my students.
I decided to have my students create poetry notebooks. Each week they would receive a new poem to add to their notebook and by the end of the year, they had quite a collection!
On Monday, I would read the poem out loud to my students during our morning meeting. We would discuss any unknown words or literary devices that were used in the poem (in this case – onomatopoeia). Oftentimes we would talk about the sensory details that the poem depicted.
The students would then get their own copy to put into their poetry notebook. I would give them about 5 minutes to color in the pictures on their poem to give it a sense of personalization.
We would practice reading the poem together every day during morning meeting. This helped the students to not only be able to read all the words, but to get a sense of the flow of the poem as well.
Their poetry notebook was kept in their book bag. At any time during Reader’s Workshop, they were able to pull out the notebook and practice the poems that we had collected.
This was a great resource for them, especially if they were at the “read to a partner” station. Each partner had their own copy of the poems and they could read them together or take turns.
There were times when I would also have the students pull out their poetry notebooks when they were meeting with me. This often depended on what I was working on with a particular group or if I saw that certain students were struggling with a poem.
I chose poems in a variety of ways. I liked to choose ones that went along with the current season or holiday. Other times, I would select poems that went along with a particular skill that we were learning in Reader’s Workshop.