Thinking about Poetry

Over at The Nerdy Book Club, Cindy has invited readers to share their favorite poets or poems.

I love poetry…especially in the classroom.  Each week in our classroom we study a poem, noticing what the poet is doing and paying attention to the images it creates in our minds.  We read it aloud and notice how the words feel in our mouths.  Individual students read and together we read chorally.

Later in the week, we revisit our poem and create an illustration that captures our understanding of the poem.  We glue our poem and illustration into a composition book we call our poetry anthology.  By the end of the school year, students have read, studied, and illustrated more than 30 poems…over the course of the three years they spend in our multiage classroom, they have close to 100 poems collected and illustrated to take home and treasure.

One of my favorite poets to share with my young students is Valerie Worth.  I love her short poems.  They are accessible to children.  And I love that she writes about ordinary things.  But these are not simple poems…they are full of imagery, word play, and figurative language.

One of my favorites is Safety Pin.

safety pin

Valerie Worth

Closed, it sleeps On its side Quietly,
The silver Image

Of some Small fish;

Opened, it snaps Its tail out
Like a thin Shrimp,

and looks
At the sharp Point with a Surprised eye.


What poets and poetry do you love?

1 thought on “Thinking about Poetry

  1. Fer

    Oh, which ones do I not love? Frank o’Hara, Brian Doyle, Dana Gioia, Billy Collins, Sylvia Plath, Seamus Heaney, ee Cummings…

    I am a huge fan of the sestina.


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