Poetry is something I have always struggled with as a teacher. I have a hard time finding engaging poetry collections and just really don’t get into poetry that much as a reader. When I was recommended this great poetry website (http://www.poetry4kids.com/) by a fellow teacher, I knew it was just what I needed and perfect for a shared reading activity. I know that as a fifth grade teacher shared reading activities are not common in the upper grades, but the students still really enjoy them. This website is perfect for shared reading because it has tons of poems that kids will love to read and discuss.
I project this site via my Promethean board and we read and discuss the poem as a class. Here is a more specific breakdown of how I conduct this shared reading activity:
1. I read the poem aloud or use the audio button to have the poem read aloud via the computer (not available on all poems).
2. The students and I then read the poem aloud again. This helps build fluency and they really enjoy it. You could also have them read the poem to a partner or even by themselves.
3.The students do a quick think pair share activity where they share their connections and responses to the poem –one of their favorite parts of the activity!
4. We find unknown words in the poem and use context clues to define them.
5. We find any rhyming words and underline them. We look for onomatopoeia, alliteration, similes, and metaphors.
6. Finally, we discuss the overall meaning and message of the poem. I typically save this for last because this is something my students tend to struggle with, but after reading it twice, sharing their thoughts with a partner, and discussing the words in depth, they are really read to discuss the message or overall meaning of even the most difficult poem.
Another aspect of the website that I love is that it has the poems broken down into categories on the left side. Here are my favorite categories (and they are linked so you can go right to them by clicking.)
Click on the picture to go to the site: