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Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets — 9 Comments

  1. I am not a person who is naturally attracted to poetry. Yet, as a teacher, I feel it’s a genre I need to share more with my students. It is also a form I would like to understand better myself.

    I listened to the audiobook version of Out Of Wonder. I really liked it. There were different readers for the different poems and appropriate music to accompany the readings of the poems.

I work with small groups of students in 30-minute time slots. My thought is I could begin each group time with a poem, perhaps spending a week on each poem. I would have the print version of a poem from the book for students to read as we listen to the audio version of the poem. Then we would do an activity with the poem: a discussion, draw an image of a line, write an interpretation of what a particular line or lines of a poem means.

    • continued from above ….

      Jive Jive Jam
      Celebrating Langston Hughes

      On Saturday, Mama sang a song that sounded blue.
      Then Daddy made his trumpet cry.
      I guess the rent is due.

The first few lines of this poem would be great for discussion. What do we know about this family? What does Mama’s singing and Daddy’s trumpet playing have in common? What does the rent due have to do with their singing?

      The poems from this book could be used with a variety of ages depending on the individual poem. Some poems could be used as low as 3rd grade.

  2. I really enjoyed this book! I love that there are various authors represented throughout the text, rather than only one author. I also appreciate that the book is divided into parts. One of my favorite poems was “How to Write a Poem”. I would use this when introducing our poetry unit. I would also use the “Contemporary Haiku” when writing out haiku poems. Overall, a great book that can be easily used in the classroom as a read aloud.

  3. I really liked this book! It was thoughtful, interesting and the poems were well written! This would be a great lead in or final piece to studying different poets! I liked it that the poems weren’t all silly, rhyming poems about silly things that make kids giggle, but not necessarily thing deeply on. I would happily add this to my classroom library.

  4. I really enjoyed this book – both the poems and the illustrations. I also liked the short biographies of the poets in the back of this book. I could see this book used in a poetry unit to inspire as well as to learn about various poets and styles. The students could read works of poetry and then write poems based on the poet’s style or interest as the book does. The students could also illustrate their poems. This book could also be a writing resource to help brainstorm ideas for papers.

  5. What a beautifully conceived and illustrated book. I love the premise of this collection. Like Noelle, I would have loved to see a piece by the inspiring artist alongside each poem. That may not be possible because of copyright laws, etc. Perhaps a short bio with each new work to give us a bit more introduction to all these wonderful poets. I felt the poems presented were well done and appreciated how clearly the poets associated their work to the originals they wished to honor.
    And I’ll reiterate, the illustrations on each page are beautiful, and definitely something I could see kids really enjoying and remembering.

  6. I know many will disagree with me, but I felt this book to be wanting. I didn’t like it very much. Here’s why: it wrote original prose based on famous author’s poetry style. I feel like the premise is that all will know what the style of the original poet’s work is like. As an elementary librarian, I find most students to know very little about poetry. I feel like this book would have been much, much fuller and richer if one or 2 examples of the original poet’s work would have been included, along with Kwame Alexander’s original poems…based on the poets’ style. I was disappointed.

  7. I loved this poetry book! The words were so powerful and I think it talked about so many different things one would experience. Leading it to have a large audience that would appreciate the meaningful messages within the poems in this book. The pictures were beautiful. I think my kids will enjoy this book very much.

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