Shame on me, because with a little planning (seriously, very little) and a couple of teachers on board, PIYP Day was a huge, resounding success.
What I Did:
- Taught poetry-centered lessons during April (nothing new here)
- Created PIYP stickers for students/staff to wear (made easy with Publisher)
- Found and copied a poem to carry in my “pocket” (thank you, Lee Bennett Hopkins)
- Scattered kid-friendly poetry books on all library tables
- Had paper/pencils available (and tape, scissors, string later on)
- Made a couple of cute poster-board “pockets” for me and the office staff, my closest neighbors in the building. No pattern needed: just some paper-cutter skills.
- Sent emails (3 total, the first 3 weeks ago) to staffaboutPIYP Day, with these links:
- YOU CAN JOIN IN. Need a poem? Come by the library, or check these websites.
- More resources and lesson ideas are here:
- Kid-friendly websites of great poets:
- J Patrick Lewis: http://jpatricklewis.com/poems.shtml
- Shel Silverstein: http://www.shelsilverstein.com/
- Jack Prelutsky: http://jackprelutsky.com/
- Ten staff members had poems in their pockets
- Eight classrooms celebrated
- Six classes of students (the usual library classes) had an opportunity to find/write poems during class (around 10-15 minutes)
- Use of the library skyrocket, as students came in during recess to find poems, type copies of poems, and create their own “pockets”
- Trading and collecting of poems was hot-hot among 1st – 3rd grade students
I eventually created a quick (think 45 min) display for my library windows on Wednesday morning when there were no classes in the library. To further share the poems that staff / students loved, it grew into this by the end of Thursday:
What I’d Do Differently Next Year:
- Have colored paper/patterns of pockets for students to make during recesses
- Weather permitting, write a poem with chalk on the sidewalks leading to the building
- Create a PIYP Day Tellegami video for the school-wide Daily News, to be aired the week prior
As students left school that afternoon, the mess in the library was worth it. It was one of those great student-centered days, where a very little bit of planning went a long, long way.
More ideas on how to celebrate Poem In Your Pocket Day are welcome! Share links/ideas below. 🙂