HS Poetry Readings

Discussion in 'High School' started by Passion4Teachin, Oct 9, 2008.

  1. Passion4Teachin

    Passion4Teachin Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2008

    I am a new English teacher and I am thinking about planning a poetry unit where students work on writing poetry (based on modeling from others and creating their own) and then having a public poetry reading at a local coffee shop, etc. Has anyone ever done that? How did it go?

    Any advice either on the poetry unit or on the readings. <3 thanks
     
  2.  
  3. engl78

    engl78 Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2008
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2008

    Hi! I would suggest researching spoken word or slam poetry events in your city. This type of poetry is great for high school kids, especially in urban communities, and many coffee shops host open-mike nights. Perhaps a coffee shop would agree to hosting a high-school poetry event in your neighborhood? Check out the book link below, I used it to teach spoken word and the kids LOVED it. If you want more ideas/information about it, let me know.

    (http://www.sourcebooks.com/products...oken-word-revolution-redux-with-audio-cd.html

    a teaching link, too:
    http://stanfordspokenword.com/workshop.htm
     
  4. GatorGal

    GatorGal Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2006
    Messages:
    506
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 9, 2008

    I haven't personally done anything like that, but it sounds fun!

    A fellow English teacher last year had an "Open-Mic Poetry Reading" during class. She transformed the classroom into a cafe. The kids really liked it.
     
  5. mshutchinson

    mshutchinson Comrade

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2004
    Messages:
    268
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 10, 2008

    The librarian in my school did it a few years ago. It was a nice event, but not well attended.
     
  6. ELA 11 12

    ELA 11 12 Companion

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    Messages:
    141
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 10, 2008

    Here's a great poetry link: http://www.loc.gov/poetry/180/

    I also suggest having them practice some of Gertrude Stein's poems in class. Great tongue exercises and depending on the age, some of the students may find some meaning.

    Do a search on youtube if you can show clips in class from poetry slams. The students will then have a large variety of models.

    Good luck and great idea!
     
  7. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,318
    Likes Received:
    10

    Oct 12, 2008

    Call it a Poetry Slam and start it out by having students read poems they find on their own. Remind them that the lyrics to their favorite songs are poems as well.

    Once they get used to reading out loud in front of others, give them fair warning and have them bring their own poems one day.

    You might also have students bring one original poem and one poem they've found, read both, and see if the other students can tell which is which.
     
  8. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    3,506
    Likes Received:
    12

    Oct 12, 2008

    Here's a couple of books you might want to look into for examples:

    Aloud:Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Cafe
    Bum Rush the Page: A Def Poetry Jam

    Both have excellent examples of the types of poetry I think you're seeking. However, both also have poems that are *highly* inappropriate for a high school classroom, so review them carefully before you read any in class.

    I also second the Poetry 180 page. I've found lots of good stuff there.

    For struggling writers or for kids who are totally overwhelmed by the idea of free verse poetry (and there will be some), I suggest allowing them to play with formula poetry like the diamonte, haiku, etc. The site 30 Days of Poetry will help you get started.

    A few years ago, I found a poetry unit online, and I adapted mine from this. It was pretty successful. We didn't read them in a cafe, but we published them in a school anthology and put it in the library. It was fun, and the kids really got into it.
     
  9. wunderwhy

    wunderwhy Comrade

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Messages:
    323
    Likes Received:
    0

    Oct 14, 2008

    I've never had a public reading, just one in class.

    I give students very specific criteria for their poetry; otherwise, you might get poems off the internet or recycled from a previous year.

    I ask each student to submit (electronically) one or two poems from their portfolio that they don't mind everyone else reading. Then I copy and paste them into a class anthology and make copies for everyone. We go outside and sit in the grass and read our poems.

    Then the class votes for the class poet laureate, who receives a copy of Garrison Keillor's compilation Good Poems with his or her name inscribed in it.

    For the unit, I would suggest looking at your state or district expectations for teaching poetry and make sure you pick poems that will enable you to teach the required terms and concepts. And of course, choose poems that you love; the kids will be much more interested if you are excited about the poems.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. vickilyn,
  2. ready2learn,
  3. miss-m
Total: 393 (members: 4, guests: 371, robots: 18)
test