The local school has invited me as Guest Speaker/Guest Poet to teach a workshop on poetry to a blended-grade classroom of seven and eight year olds. Winnowing down the poems is a struggle. Poem Hunter is a great anthologized site of the classic and modern poets as well as lesser known lyricists.
So far, here is my list of top poems to read out loud before we break off into the activity phase, which will be set up as stations:
Daffodils, by William Wordsworth
The Drum, by Nikki Giovanni
Harlem, by Langston Hughes
Song of the Pop-Bottlers, by Morris Bishop
Stopping by Woods on a Snowing Evening, by Robert Frost
I want to talk first about the musicality and layering of sounds to make a poem. An unlikely musician will assist us in the journey into listening to layers. Most would select classic jazz musicians. But I like those esoteric musicians, who don't always get a global audience. Here is the Oxford-based musician, Chad Valley. His song "Fast Challenges" will start off our morning of words as music, words as imagery. Poetry is isolating our senses and then layering them. It will be a fun day.