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January 08, 2016


I wrote my Master's project in Literacy Studies advocating the return to poetry as a means of literacy education and teaching children to read. I think it's been a few generations now where teachers are now the ones who are afraid (still afraid) of poetry and therefore, young children do not get poetry early enough for it to do anything but make them frightened of it. Elementary teachers, unsure of how to approach poetry, teach rhymed prose and cutsie teacher poems ("Who is this child I see standing before me/trying his hardest to simply not be?"). That sets the pattern for avoidance on both sides in later grades when the skill of literary analysis is brought to the surface.

What we need is a pedagogical program for poetry that aligns with current standards (so it will get looked at).

That and like the boys of #newboyband to talk about how much they love poems and be seen reading them ;)

I should also add plenty of secondary teachers are afraid of poetry, too. Many enter into an unspoken contract with theirs students to gloss over poetry with little more than a cursory glance.

The memory exercise is fantastic. I'm going to use it this semester. Thanks for a wonderful week of posts! Stacey

Thanks for your valuable post.
I am going to use it in this semester.

Thank you so much, Alisha! I'm beyond honored that you'll use this post in your teaching. Happy new year!

Read Yeats.

No one likes poetry, let's face it. But everyone loves flowers.

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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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