Tuesday, March 10, 2009


This is a little of how I try to incorporate poetry into our lives:-

First, have some good books nearby for when a moment may present itself, usually morning or afternoon tea but we do go through seasons when the children are so rowdy I can't get a word in or a flow happening so I just let them get it out of there systems and leave poetry for another time. Our most used and favorite are-
Eric Carle's Animals Animals
Colorful collages bring to life animal poems as diverse as Lewis Carol to Japanese Haiku to Shakespeare. Great for those with animal lovers in the family.
The Hutchinson Treasury of children's Poetry
An anthology of poems for the youngest member to the oldest. It includes nursery rhymes and action poems as well as Rudyard Kipling, Robert Louis Stevenson and Christina Rossetti and many others. Heart warming and funny illustrations. I picked mine up half price at a discount book store. When the children were younger I recorded myself reading some of these poems onto a tape that they would listen to at bedtime, 'The Mummy tape' was the favorite going to bed tape for years. It was unravelled I think by the bubba last year, its definitely time for a new 'Mummy Tape.'
Favorite Poems of Childhood by Dover
We used this easy to handle paperback at our weekly teatime, with the children choosing a poem to read aloud. My eldest two used some of the poems for copywork. This is a very enjoyable book and good for the confident reader to practise reading aloud.

Here's a little poem from our budding poet- she loves & appreciates poetry, often will come to me with her latest favorite and has her favorite poetry book- the Hutchinson Treasury:-
Tree to Tree
My little brother
a tree
way up in
the sky
he loves trees
so do I

This week we had an impromptu 'teatime' as we had some homemade biscuits from the market and honey tea was requested so with the table laid and children drinking tea and eating yummies there was a moment of quiet; a chance for me to read something! I went to the shelf, grabbed the nearest poetry book and started reading. First up for the littlest one Jack and Jill, Hickory Dickory Dock and a few more with actions that all had joined in with she was happy, drenched in honey tea and ready to get down and play. Next I scanned for a poem the older 3 would all like and found one called 'I saw a ship'. Before I started reading I told them were great artists and they had been asked to paint a picture of this poem, 'Close your eyes and imagine the painting come to life while I read it aloud'... 'I can see it'! they responded. Then I came across one that made them all laugh and run after each other being crazy monsters ( yeah, as if I need to make more opportunities for that), they loved it so much I thought I would share it here, it adds to the reading if you read it kind of scary like. ( I wouldn't read this to a 3 or 4 year old)

Question Time
What does a monster look like?
and scary
and furry and burley and pimply and dimply and warty and naughty and wrinkled and
that's what a monster looks like.
How does a monster move?
It oozes,
it shambles,
it crawls and it ambles, it slouches and shuffles and trudges, it lumbers
and toddles, it creeps and it waddles...
That's how a monster moves.
Where does a monster live?
In garden sheds,
under beds,
in wardrobes, in plug holes and ditches,
beneath city streets, just under your feet...
That's where a monster lives.
How does a monster eat?
It slurps and it burps and gobbles and gulps and sips and swallows and
scoffs, it nibbles and munches, it chews and it crunches...
That's how a monster eats.
What does a monster eat?
Slugs and bats and bugs and rats and stones and mud and bones and blood and squelchy squids... and nosy kids!
That's what a monster eats!

Oh, the squeals of make believe fright mixed with giggles and grins made this poem one to remember.