Saturday, May 20, 2017

Music Poetry

Last year I started using Deedee's music poems. My co-teacher was using them and I could always hear the song and the kids singing along, so I asked her about it. She said her kids really loved the songs so of course I investigated. I bought one month just to see how it would go, where could I fit in another activity, and to see if my class would enjoy them. I have to tell you, they were a HIT right off the bat. So then I got more and this year I started using them in September and I put them in a station. The kids were not very successful with the poetry station as I was hoping. They could not put the poem in order and had trouble reading the words. Now of course this is September of Kindergarten so I wasn't too surprised, but I wanted to know how Deedee did it with her class. So I investigated more and came across this post; Daily Poetry. Wham, bam, thank you ma'am, I saw what I was doing wrong and what I could do to improve and I did!
Now I have re-introduced the poetry station and the kids are much more successful. I put the poems in the week after we've done them, and I keep about 2-3 poems in there (just the last couple we have done). At first I just put them in big gallon bags to keep them, but then I had the thought of using 11x9 manila folders, laminate them like we do for the kids' weekly take home folder, and then they'll last (and the I can won't get lost so we know what goes in each folder). Everything that is on the "I Can" I have put in the folder. I put velcro dots on them to keep them closed, but they have not been working as well so I'm trying this week to just have the folders and I'm crossing my fingers all the poem parts stay in. (Deedee also does a great job of labeling the sorting pieces so if they get separated then it's easy to find their home)
The kids usually find the poem in our song book, or they just read it from the front. Then they work together with their partner to put the poem in order. Sometimes they each choose one to do on their own, which is fine as well. It's always funny to see them working on a poem that was a class favorite because they know it so well they sing it as they put it together and then go over and over it.
I have loved using these this year because it is something all of my kids can do, it helps them recognize words, punctuation, sight words, rhyming words, directionality, and much more. Most importantly, they LOVE them. I don't think I have come across a poem yet that we have done, that wasn't a favorite. When we have a few moments in the day of extra time, this is a great go to. I pick kids from my name sticks and they get to choose any poem (except for Loose Tooth right now because they sing it ALL the time 😊) and we sing it as a class. There are also videos that go along with the poems, so I usually pick those.
Here is a FREEBIE for a summer poem, so you can try it out. There is a 5-day plan that goes along with it, but no music. But if you are intrigued (which I hope you are), you can do what I did and just start off with a month and see what you think. But I promise you, that you will want the whole year and possibly even both Poetry 1 and 2, which I have and I love to pick and choose between them (which is sometimes very hard and then we just have 2 poems but I wouldn't recommend doing that because they don't learn the poems as well) and I pick ones that go with our themes.

I will try to get more pictures of the kids using the station so you can see what it looks like in my room.

Happy Teaching!

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