Calling all poetry lovers!
In case you didn’t already know April is National Poetry Month. I admit that I am not a big reader of poetry nowadays unless it’s in a children’s book. I enjoyed all of the Shel Silverstein classics as a child, but I kind of lost my interest in reading poetry sometime during high school. You know, when it wasn’t required reading in school anymore…LOL! I do love poetry though, especially poems that rhyme.
That’s why I’m so glad to see there are so many wonderful poetry books out there for my children. I think it is important to introduce poetry to kids from the very beginning of their lives. Research shows that poetry promotes literacy, builds community, and fosters emotional resilience. Awesome, right?
In addition, when read aloud, poetry is rhythm and music and sounds and beats. Young children, babies and preschoolers included, may not understand all the words or meaning, but they’ll surely feel the rhythms, get curious about what the sounds mean and perhaps want to create their own. I remember I used to love making up my own poems as a kid…oh, the memories!
I also find it interesting that contrary to popular belief amongst kids, boys get really into poetry when brought in through rhythm and rhyme. It’s the most kinesthetic of all literature, it’s physical and full-bodied which activates your heart and soul. Boys, included. I really believe this to be true as I’ve witnessed Mr. Tickles seems to pay close attention whenever I’m reading them a book with catchy rhymes.
So since National Poetry Month is coming up, I thought it would be fun to start a poetry reading challenge for kids. See below for the deets…
WHAT: A poetry reading and craft challenge for kids! It doesn’t matter if your child is a newborn, toddler, preschooler, adolescent, pre-teen or teenager. All kids (and adults) are welcome to participate.
HOW: This challenge will be simple. All you need to do is memorize one (short) poem per week with your kids during the month of April. In addition, you can do one of the crafts I suggest or choose your own. The crafts will be related to the overall theme of the poem. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be crafty either.
WHEN: Starting this Sunday, March 29th, I’ll post the first poem of the week to be memorized as well as the craft(s) to go along with it. You’ll have the whole week to memorize the poem with your kids and work on the craft(s) at your leisure. The remaining poems/crafts will be introduced each Sunday on April 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th.
I hope you’ll join me in this challenge with your little ones. National Poetry Month is a great time to bring some poetry into your heart and home.