Saturday, April 01, 2017

Learning from students: I am

To paraphrase an ancient proverb, I like to think that the students of my students are also my teacher! I learn from them—as well as from my own students. And this April, my graduate students who are teachers and librarians are trying poetry activities with their students and allowing me to share them here so we can all see what kids are thinking and writing and sharing. In a nutshell, they tried the interactive activities in the Poetry Friday Power Books, You Just Wait and Here We Go and I'll be featuring their work with students all month long in celebration of National Poetry Month.

First, we focus on You Just Wait, a Poetry Friday Power Book for tweens and teens, features 12 PowerPack sets that combine: 1) a diverse outside poem from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School; 2) a new original response poem and mentor text by Janet Wong; 3) a PowerPlay prewriting activity; and 4) a Power2You writing prompt. We're also so pleased that You Just Wait was selected as a NCTE Poetry Notable book.

The twelve poems from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School (also an NCTE Poetry Notable) were written by Robyn Hood Black, Joseph Bruchac, Jen Bryant, Margarita Engle, Julie Larios, Carmen T. Bernier-Grand, Charles Ghigna, Avis Harley, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Charles Waters, and Virginia Euwer Wolff

The way they are joined together here with twenty-four new poems by Janet Wong, they form a story featuring Paz, an Asian-Latina soccer player with dreams of stardom in college, the Olympics, and ultimately the World Cup; Lucesita, her feisty movie-loving cousin; and Joe, an older brother with dreams of the NBA. 

What follows is a sample poem from PowerPack #1 along with one student’s responses in the interactive PowerPlay and Power2You activities. Thank you, Erica, and thank your students too. First, a student checked the boxes that described her in this PowerPlay activity that starts the PowerPack.  

Then, Erica shared this digital graphic she created for the mentor text poem, "I am" by Janet Wong.

Then, a student responded to this text with a poem of her own.

See how this girl shares a bit of herself in her poem and in her colorful, graphic creation of her poem? She"loves to play in the rain even when there's thunder" and "is proud to be Tongan." All in rainbow colors. Lovely!  


Liz Steinglass said...

Wonderful! It's just wonderful to see the book at work and working on so many levels.

Jane Heitman Healy said...

Thanks for sharing results, Sylvia! I love these power books!