Friday, January 20, 2012


I interrupt my regular Poetry Friday posts to do a little shameless advertising. Each year, an uber-dedicated team of people from my district publishes an anthology of student poems from around the district. The team is led by a fourth grade teacher, Steve Replogle. This year's version, DREAMS AND DIRECTIONS, came out about a month ago.

DREAMS AND DIRECTIONS contains over 200 poems written by students in grades K-5. Previous volumes have been organized thematically, this year's poems are grouped by the areas in the city. Poems are illustrated by secondary students from the district's Career Education Center.

An added feature-- the book has two indexes. The first, as one might expect, is alphabetical by title, but the second is organized by poetic form or tool-- haiku, humor, onomatopoeia, similes, surprise endings, etc. Perhaps only a teacher who has frantically searched for a poem with an extended metaphor five minutes before her students arrived can appreciate this feature, but I thought it was way cool!

Here are a few sample poems from the anthology…

"The Heart"
Robert, Kindergarten, Fairview Elementary

The heart is big
The heart is bigger
than an elephant.

Tazi, Stedman Elementary School

How what?
How do?
How do what?
How do you?
How do you what?
How do you know?
How do you know what?
How do you know when?
How do you know when what?
How do you know when the stars will far?

'I Want A World'

--Hamza, 4th grade, McMeen Elementary School

I want a world
with peace and no war
so no loved ones have to die
I want a world
with fresh breathable air
and no crazy wildfires
I want a world
with no terrorist dictators
making bad choices
I want a world
where everyone
has food, shelter, and clothes
I want a world
where everyone gets a good education
and a great job
I want a world
where everyone's dreams
come true.

The website for DREAMS AND DIRECTIONS, as well as the three previous volumes of poetry, is here.

You can purchase DREAMS AND DIRECTIONS at my favorite local independent bookseller, THE TATTERED COVER.

Elaine Magliaro is hosting POETRY FRIDAY at WILD ROSE READER.


Linda B said...

The students must love their poems being published in the book. Isn't it wonderful to see so many writing poetry!

GatheringBooks said...

Oh wow, Carol, this looks like a lovely lovely book. It's always great to read poems made by children - to have a heart bigger than an elephant - a world with no terrorist dictators - but how? oh yes, how? - such an apt question indeed. What a meaningful project with the kids. I am sure they are thrilled seeing their 'bylines' in this book - what a treasure.

Linda B said...

Hi Carol, thanks for the Graves book idea & liking my poem. I think we have his book in our staff library. I don't have it, but do have others of his books. I'll look around. I understand about the meeting; maybe another time at TC for sure. Mary Lee Hahn proposed it to me to get together with you this summer, too. Let me know when & if you get back to TC on a Saturday maybe this spring. Although it's chancy to go as you know (te he). I'm so excited about the conference. You are one busy lady with being past president & all. I used to go years ago but have strayed away! Looking forward to meeting sometime!

Mary Lee said...

What a fabulous gift to the community/world! Kudos to the group who puts this together and to all the teachers who value poetry reading/writing in their classrooms. The double index is incredibly smart!

Amy L V said...

I, too, think that double index is a fantastic idea. What a great resource for young writers or teachers looking for mentor texts. The title, cover, and poems you shared are delightful! They'll never forget being a part of this. Congrats to all involved! a.