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Sunday, April 29, 2007

Set up a Poetry Notebook

This was posted by someone named Lisa D., several years ago. I think she posted it on the WTM boards, or it may have been on a classical education board. This is typed word for word by the original poster’s directions:

Poetry Notebooks:

For each grade level, there are enough (or more than enough, in some cases) poems to fill up a blank book from Miller Pads and Paper. The Miller blank books are very inexpensive, and have 14 front and back pages each (28 surfaces). For each poem that you insert in the book, you will leave the opposite page blank for your child to illustrate that poem.

Here’s how I usually arrange my books. When I open the front cover of the book, I attach my first poem to the front side of the first actual page of the book. For this page, I usually choose one of the shortest poems in the packet, so my son can illustrate this poem underneath the text. (This means that you will want to place the poem toward the top of the page, to allow plenty of room at the bottom for the illustrations). On the back side of the first page, I attach the second poem. The illustration for the second poem will be on the front side of the second page (opposite the text, giving you a 2 page spread for each poem/illustration).

The pattern goes the same way for the rest of the book. If you want to put more poems in the book than you have space for, you can use the same method as for the first poem in the book. Simply put some of the shorter poems toward the top of your page, and allow them to illustrate underneath.

To attach the poems to the book, use only double-stick tape. (Rubber cement, glue, etc., will make a bumpy mess of your page, and it will not lay smooth). Simply trim the poem down to size, preferably with a paper cutter, and then proceed with the double stick tape.

Memorization: I prefer to use Katherine Bell’s memorization techniques found on her website her website. This involves an audio recorder and tapes, plus headphones. I let my son listen to the selection that he is memorizing daily. It’s amazing how quickly this repetition cements the poetry in his little head. Usually, I will quiz him on what he’s learning 1-2 times a week, just to make sure that he is really paying attention. I also have him recite his poems frequently to family. He has to speak loud, clearly, and slowly. He is not allowed to fidget around, look down, etc… I keep a separate audio tape with all the selections he has memorized so far for the year. This is a review tape that he hears once or so a week, just to keep fresh the other selections that he has memorized. The method is, for the most part, a hands free method of memorization for the parent. (Other than recording the poems on tape in your own voice, and occasionally reminding them to go listen to their tapes.)

Remember you are not bound to these poems. These are a great representation of many of the good poems out there, but if you come across one that you would like to include, just go ahead the type it up and trade it out for one of the other poems. Or if you want to shuffle around the poems from one grade level to another, go right ahead. I think I already mentioned this in my original post, but the order of the historical selections in the poetry selection follows the grade-level order for Veritas History. (Beginning with Ancient Egypt in 2nd grade, and ending with American History in 6th grade). If you are following a different course of history, just shuffle these poems around to fit with your own plan.

Here is the poetry list:

First Grade
Psalm 1
Psalm 23
Psalm 100
I Sing the Mighty Power of God
Mr. Nobody
The Lamb
A Little Brother Follows Me
Hurt No Living Thing
The Wind
The Swing
End of Summer Poem
Bed in Summer
Animal Crackers
At the Zoo
A Good Play
(Extras: Beautiful and 30 Days Hath September)

Second Grade
Psalm 8
Books of the Bible
Silent Night
Oxymandias of Egypt
Ten Plagues
The Red Rose Says . . .
Song of the Grass Blades
Which Loved Best
If You Were
Results and Roses
How the Little Kite Learned to Fly
The Moon
Pirate Story
Children’s Hour
When Mother Reads Aloud
My Shadow

Third Grade
Psalm 113
10 Commandments
O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing
Try, Try Again
The Grumble Family
A Land Unknown
Rules for Talking
Blessings of Prayer
The Violet
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
The Seagull
The Harvest
The Duel

Fourth Grade
1 Corinthians 13
Philippians 2: 1-18
A Mighty Fortress is Our God
A Humble Heart
The Captain’s Daughter
Can and Can’t
Sermons We See
Father Mapple’s Hymn
Red Geraniums
The Eagle
The Snow (It Sifts from Leaden Sieves)
Captain Kidd
Sonnet XXX (Shakespeare)

Fifth Grade
Isaiah 53
Amazing Grace
Declaration of Independence
Preamble to the Constitution
Landing of the Pilgrim Fathers
The Charge of the Light Brigade
Concord Hymn
The Flag Goes By
All Things Beautiful
What Have We Done Today?
Sin and Its Cure
Beautiful Things

Sixth Grade
Ephesians 6
O God, Our Help in Ages Past
Gettysburg Address
Churchill Speeches
In Flanders Fields
The New Colossus
It Can Be Done
America the Beautiful
Somebody’s Mother
The Loom of Time
The Road Not Taken
Little Boy Blue
Crossing the Bar
If I Had This or That


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