Each April, across the nation, teachers and students alike celebrate National Poetry Month. Introduced in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets National Poetry Month offers the perfect opportunity to increase awareness and appreciation of poetry by children of all ages.
if you are a teacher or homeschool parent searching for poetry that kids will love, the following is a selection tried and true pieces that are sure to delight. For more, you can sign up for the free email series Teach This Poem, which features one poem a week, accompanied by interdisciplinary resources and activities designed to help quickly and easily bring poetry into the classroom.
- Antigonish [I met a man who wasn’t there] by Hughes Mearns
- At the Zoo by William Makepeace Thackeray
- Be Glad Your Nose is on Your Face by Jack Prelutsky
- Bleezer’s Ice Cream by Jack Prelutsky
- Clouds by Christina Rossetti
- Dream Variations by Langston Hughes
- Eletelephony by Laura Elizabeth Richards
- Fishmonger by Marsden Hartley
- Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll
- maggie and milly and molly and may by E. E. Cummings
- Mary’s Lamb by Sarah Josepha Hale
- Mother Doesn’t Want a Dog by Judith Viorst
- My Shadow by Robert Louis Stevenson
- Nonsense Alphabet by Edward Lear
- Sick by Shel Silverstein
- Since Hannah Moved Away by Judith Viorst
- The Crocodile by Lewis Carroll
- The Duel by Eugene Field
- The Eagle by Lord Alfred Tennyson
- The Good Moolly Cow [excerpt] by Eliza Lee Follen
- The Land of Counterpane by Robert Louis Stevenson
- The Purple Cow by Gelett Burgess
- The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
- The Tyger by William Blake
- Wynken, Blynken, and Nod by Eugene Field
In addition, The Academy of American Poets website serves as a hub for information about local poetry events throughout the month and provides free educational resources to teachers for classroom celebrations and activities. Many publishers, booksellers, educators and literary organizations use the month to promote poetry: publishers often release and publicize their poetry titles in April, teachers and librarians focus on poetry units during the month; and bookstores and reading series frequently hold special readings.
In Delaware, many events are planned to celebrate National Poetry Month including:
- Literary Reading featuring Delaware writers Liz Dolan, Larry Kelts, Maria Masington, Phillip Bannowsky, Jim Bourey and more at Zwaanendael Museum, Lewes
- Poetry reading featuring Irene Fick, Kit Zak, and Gail Cormorat at Browseabout Books, Rehoboth Beach
- 2nd Saturday Poets – Monthly poetry reading at the Jackson Inn, Wilmington
April 10: On Screen/In Person – 2015/2016 film series – Deaf Jam at Film Brothers Movie Co-op, Wilmington
April 16: Marquette Shaw: A Delaware Poet for All Seasons, spoken word performance at the Old State House, Dover
April 23: 4th Annual Poetry Reading and Art Reception at Gallery 37, Milford
April 27: Broadkill River Press poetry reading featuring Gail Comorat, Ethan Joella at Irish Eyes Restaurant and Pub, Milton
April 28: Speaker and poet James Alexander brings to light through prose both the direct and indirect influence our spoken word have on our lives as well as the lives of others., Kent County Public Library
April 30: Delaware Poets Laureate, The Twin Poets, Book Signing and Open Mic Event at MeJah Books, Claymont.
To learn more about National Poetry events throughout Delaware, please visit the State of Delaware website.
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