I think you know how much I promote poetry in the classroom. Barbara Baker, a kindergarten teacher from Alafia Elementary (firstname.lastname@example.org) shared this idea at Summer Camp and I went nuts! If I were in charge of the world every classroom would do this in the upcoming school year.
My kindergarten class pairs with a fourth grade class for the entire school year. We call ourselves the “Alligator Buddy Club” since our school mascot is an alligator. All year we meet and do activities together. During April when it’s Poetry Month, the fourth grade buddies transform their classroom into a Poetry Café. They dress in black and wear black berets as they sit on bar stools with a microphone. They serve tea and coffee to the audience of parents who come to the children perform. Each fourth grader sits next to the kindergarten buddy and one at a time, the children read their favorite poem from their poetry collection they have worked on all year. Drums are pounded after each poem as the children snap their fingers and recite, “Way to go…daddy-o!” The pride each child feels will be remembered for a lifetime. The love of poetry is celebrated and becomes a part of their memories. This activity builds confidence, develops oral language, auditory memory, comprehension, rhythm, rhyme, repetition, eye contact, social interaction…Oh, and Common Core State Standards!!!