Thursday, October 08, 2015

Celebrate Star Wars Reads Day with POETRY

I may have mentioned before that I'm a big Star Wars nerd! I have loved the movies, characters, and lore since 1977 and even attend the conventions or Star Wars "Celebrations" with my family. So I was tickled that there is now a "Star Wars Reads" Day to promote reading being held for the 4th year-- on October 10. You'll find activities and reproducibles here and they have a Facebook page, too, of course. For kids and families who already enjoy the world of Star Wars, it's a chance for them to shine and to promote reading too (and there are lots of Star Wars-themed reading materials). And with the launch of a 7th Star Wars movie in December, it's a fun time to welcome new fans and celebrate science (and sci fi and mythology too). 

And of course I want to make a POETRY connection, in particular. There are heaps of science-themed poems to share and I've written about that before. In fact, I have an article about this topic coming out in BOOK LINKS in November with science poetry recommendations from 15 poets themselves. And Janet (Wong) and I will be announcing a new science poetry project ourselves very soon too! More on all that later.

Meanwhile, I thought it might be fun to take a few poems and "Star Wars-ify" them! To reinterpret them through the lens of Star Wars. So, if you're familiar with Darth Vader (the dark villain of the series), Yoda (the wise guru), and C3PO (a robot dedicated to languages and etiquette), you might enjoy the three following poems filtered from THEIR perspectives! 

For example, I have featured "Poem for a Bully" by Eileen Spinelli from The Poetry Friday Anthology previously over at Pinterest here. But what if we put that "Poem for a Bully" against an image of Darth Vader, a bully with a secret himself?



Or consider the wise Yoda character who teaches young Luke Skywalker to control his emotions and fears in order to face his enemy (and himself).  What if Yoda is the backdrop for the poem "Fear Factor" by Sara Holbrook from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School? You'll find a more traditional interpretation of the poem at Pinterest here and the Yoda interpretation below. 



Or finally, if you're familiar with the droid (or robot) character, C3PO, you know he is a prissy individual proud of his ability to speak multiple languages and know the rules of etiquette and behavior in many cultures. What if he is sharing a poem about making friends using greetings in several languages? Here's a more traditional interpretation of the poem, "How to Make a Friend" by Jane Heitman Healy from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Celebrations and below is the same poem shared by C3PO.


If you're working with children and families who love Star Wars like I do, challenge them to find a poem from a book on the shelves that fits a Star Wars character and then read it from the point of view of that character. It's a fun way to approach poetry and celebrate our Star Wars knowledge too! 

Now, join the rest of the crew over at Laura's site, Writing the World for Kids, where we're celebrating Poetry Friday. 

19 comments:

Sally Murphy said...

Oh Sylvia - what clever pairings. I think I like the bully one the best - so very clever to match it with Darth Vader. Thanks for sharing.

Liz Steinglass said...

Brilliant! I absolutely love this idea. I think this would be a great classroom assignment. It would be fascinating to see how students pair poems and images.

Holly Thompson said...

Great poem pairing idea! Thank you!

laurasalas said...

This. Is. Genius. (I just wish the images were bigger so I could read the poems more easily.) What a fantastic idea.

Linda Baie said...

My young granddaughters love Star Wars. They have watched the first one with their Papa (a film editor), so are planning a Star Wars Halloween. I'll share these with them, & thank you much for the idea of new pairings, Sylvia. What fun kids would have doing this, with book covers, movie favorites, and on.

jama said...

What a brilliant idea! Love all your pairings -- they are perfection! Didn't realize you were such a big Star Wars fan.

Ed DeCaria said...

This is a really fun idea, Sylvia ... I'll be reading poems from a Star Wars POV for weeks! -Ed

Ed DeCaria said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joy said...

Sylvia,
What a brilliant idea. I love your pairings. And your challenge to find a poem and assign it to a character is just too clever. I can see a whole Star Wars Poetry Collection. Jaba, Ewoks, Chewy. There must be poems for or from them.
The last time I was at Magdelin College in Oxford, I thought their gargoyles looked like Star Wars characters.
Thank you for a delightful post.

Janet Wong said...

Jama: I didn't realize what a big Star Wars fan Sylvia was either until this past June when we walked into the Lucasfilm building (thanks to a fabulous Disney event at ALA in San Francisco) and I felt her LEVITATE. To say that she was excited would be to say that you are fond of Colin Firth movies . . . I think she burned through her camera card in about 3 minutes. In fact, her excitement was so infectious that I (who have not even seen all the Star Wars movies) started injecting Star Wars tidbits into my speaking events . . . and in the past 4 months I have given 5 copies of various Star Wars books as gifts! (books by Tom Angleberger, the Wang brothers, and the How to Speak Wookiee books)

Irene Latham said...

Ha! I love reading Janet's comment about you being a SW fan girl, Sylvia. :) I am sharing this post with my sister, who is also a SW fan girl. Thank you!

Penny Parker Klostermann said...

What a wonderful idea. I have pinned all these to my Pinterest to have for reference. This would be great fun to use in a poetry workshop.

Diane Mayr said...

"How to Make a Friend"? If you're C3PO you start with a mechanical nod, followed by a buzz from your little sidekick! Irresistible!

Sylvia Vardell said...

Wow, thank you ALL for stopping by and sharing your kind comments! I honestly thought I was WAY out on a limb with this post, but I'm glad to see there are others who share (or will tolerate) my Star Wars love! Thanks a bunch, friends, and happy Star Wars Reads Day, one and all!

Amy Ludwig VanDerwater said...

Oh, I am smiling like CRAZY over here. How simply perfect. I can't wait to show our Henry...a big fan! xx (I am also giggling at checking "I'm not a robot" after reading this post when I so want to BE a robot!)

katswhiskers said...

Wow. I didn't realise there were so many Star Wars fans around! I won't mention how many SW books and films I haven't read, then... :P But I can certainly appreciate what you've done with this, Sylvia - and especially love that Bully poem. What a powerful connection that is!

Charles Waters said...

LOVED the pictures with the poems! VARDELL POWER!

Mary Lee said...

Star Wars-ify -- cracks me up!

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

Late to the party, but just wanted to stop by and say these are AWESOME, Sylvia! I love your pairings.