By Helen Morgus, Children’s Librarian II
In the Children’s Library, before the pandemic, we invited groups of fourth graders to visit for poetry programs every April.
One year, we had them read aloud. We handed out poems. They chose partners and worked on who would say which parts. They practiced. Then they bravely stood before their class, and performed. Poems in hand, they giggled, stumbled, and blushed. But they read. And we saw the lights go on in their minds.
Poetry is sound, rhythm, music, movement on the page. How cool is that? Want to know what we gave them to work with?
- Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices by Paul Fleischman, a collection of poems about insects, written to be shared.
- Mirror Mirror by Marilyn Singer, an extremely clever collection of poems about fairy tale characters that can be read top to bottom or in reverse, for a new meaning.
- If you’re browsing our poetry section, right next to Marilyn Singer’s books you’ll find the quirky, illustrated classics of the irreverent Shel Silverstein, including Where the Sidewalk Ends, The Giving Tree, and A Light in the Attic.
These are mere scratches on the surface of a deep mine of treasures on the Children’s shelves. Come and see how children’s poetry fits into any adult’s world.