I got so inspired by all the April festivities in the Kidlitosphere that I've imported "Thirty Poets, Thirty Days" into my first-grade classroom. Of course we've been enjoying poetry all year, but now we're riding the poetry wave! On April 1 we were on Spring Break, so I had to choose the first six poems to catch us up. I took them all from Poetry Speaks to Children and have put the CD that goes with that gorgeous book in the listening center. Now, however, the children are each taking a turn to choose the Poem of the Day--a power which they deeply dig! So far Katana has shared "Covers" from Nikki Giovanni's The Sun is So Quiet and Vivian has selected "ME I AM" by Jack Prelutsky, collected in My Song Is Beautiful by Mary Ann Hoberman. I'll keep you posted on what else goes up onto our Poetry Calendar in the hallway!
Here in the D.C. area the weather has been a little extreme. Not that many weeks ago we were buried under more than two feet of snow, "proving" in the minds of some folks that global warming is a myth. Now, for the past few days the temperature has been near 90 degrees, which sounds like climate change to me (although my brief research shows that in years with 90* April days, we do tend to get more snow...I wonder how that works?). Right now in my yard are blooming simultaneously forsythia, daffodils, periwinkle, tulips, hyacinths, weeping cherry, bleeding heart, dogwood and even some of the azaleas! Makes me want to sleep outside--except for "Marlon," the suburban raccoon who's hanging around and apparently aspires to becoming our pet. It's a little creepy.
In the spirit of unpredictable weather, I offer up this poem by David McCord, which was an ideal opening for the public charter school application's section on Special Education.
Sometime this winter if you go
To walk in soft new-falling snow
When flakes are big and come down slow
To settle on your sleeve as bright
As stars that couldn't wait for night,
You won't know what you have in sight--
Another world--unless you bring
A magnifying glass. This thing
We call a snowflake is the king
Of crystals. Do you like surprise?
Examine him three times his size:
At first you won't believe your eyes.
Stars look alike, but flakes do not:
No two the same in all the lot
That you will get in any spot
You chance to be, for every one
Come spinning through the sky has none
But his own window-wings of sun:
Joints, points and crosses. What could make
Such lacework with no crack or break?
In billion billions, no mistake?
~ David McCord
(anthologized in Sing a Song of Popcorn)