Waltrina D. Kirkland-Mullins
Bringing literature to life across genres is crucial at the elementary level. By sparking interest in written art forms at this formative age, we can help children grasp that the written word is the spoken word penned in creative ways. By intentionally tapping into children's audio-visual, kinesthetic, and tactile learning styles, we can set the tone for a love of language among young learners to last a lifetime. An effective way to achieve this end is through the use of poetry. It is for these reasons that I created this unit.
Aligned with Connecticut educational standards, the unit explores select poems by Edward Lear, Eloise Greenfield, Langston Hughes, and Arnold Adoff. Through the poetic voices of these authors, children across ability levels will be immersed in creative expression using such literary devices as simile, metaphor, onomatopoeia, and more. Story content as it applies to each poem is accentuated with a focus on the first or third person character(s)/narrator(s). Mime and role play, coupled with collaborative interactive writing activities, serve as engaging teaching tools through which students will make meaningful text-to-self-to-world connections. Equally important, students work together on a collaborative basis, making Poetry Alive! a language arts/social development experience!
(Developed for Language Arts and Social Development, grade 3; recommended for Language Arts, the Arts, and Social Development, grades 3-5)