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1st Grade - Now That i Can Read

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Now That I Can Read

I used to need somebody
To sit and read to me
I’d look at every page they read
And listen carefully.
But now that I am in first grade,
I’m filling up a shelf
With stories, poems, and other books
That I can read myself.

- Ruth Etkin

Our poetry program is an important part of the way that your children are learning to read and write.  Poetry helps the children to develop many valuable skills including: the ability to rhyme, read with rhythm and fluency, and to identify high frequency words.  I have also found that the flexible, fun format of poems helps students feel comfortable writing their own poems and stories.  Dive right in and have fun with the information on this site!

The Basics (What to Expect Each Week):

Each child will have a three ring binder that will contain all the poems they have worked with throughout the year and some of their own work.  Every week we will learn a new poem in the classroom.  I will present the poem in large format using sentence strips and a pocket chart.  The children and I will read the poem together and usually discuss an element of the poem (i.e. rhyming words, long vowel words, science words...etc).  I will sometimes rearrange the poem, having the children work together to put it back in the right order.

The children will then receive a copy of the poem for their poetry journal.  On the back of the poem, there will be an assignment that he/she needs to complete.  The assignments are usually my own creations and vary depending on the concepts and subject areas with which we are working.  For example: if we are working on weather and seasons in science, the children may have a poem that is about a certain type of weather (rainy) the assignment might be to think of as many describing words (adjectives) as they can for rainy weather.  This assignment ties together science (weather) with language arts (adjectives).

What you can do with your child:

  • Read the poem with your child - It helps to read it a couple times and then have your child try reading it to you.
  • Help your child to complete the assignment - These assignments are meant to have some kind of parent supervision.
  • If your child will be reciting the poem:  practice the poem with your child so that he or she will be ready to recite by Friday.

“Keep a Poem in Your Pocket”

Keep a poem in your pocket
And a picture in your head
And you’ll never feel lonely
At night when you’re in bed

The little poem will sing to you
The little picture will bring to you
A dozen dreams to dance to you
At night when you’re in bed

So-

Keep a poem in your pocket
Keep a picture in your head
And you’ll never feel lonely
At night when you’re in bed

-Beatrice Schenk de Rogniers



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