Book Spine Poetry with Tellagami (Day 4)

IMG_2914Today was my final day working with 2nd graders on Tellagami.  Mrs. Yawn’s class went through the same process as the other classes.  I’m really glad that I decided to do this in groups.  My original plan was to do individual book spine poems, but I think it would have been very hard to manage on the technology side of things.  Getting 7 poems created and recorded in one class period was an ideal number.

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Here’s a look at Mrs. Yawn’s poems.

 

Don’t forget to view the poems from:

Mrs. Brink’s Class

Mrs. Wright’s Class

Mrs. Ramseyer’s Class

Book Spine Poetry with Tellagami (Day 3)

IMG_2896Today Mrs. Ramseyer’s class came to work on book spine poetry.  The past 2 days, I’ve had a graduate assistant and sometimes a special education teacher or other support teacher along with the teacher and I.  However, today it was just me and Mrs. Ramseyer.  It still worked great, but it was definitely a little more on our plates to manage with 6 groups roaming the library and working in about 5 different locations in the library.  We still had fun, and in the end, the kids still wrote some fantastic poetry.

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Book Spine Poetry with Tellagami (Day 2)

IMG_2889After yesterday’s fun time with Tellagami and book spine poetry, I was really hoping that today would be just as great!  We’ve had some troubles with updating our iPads, so I almost thought that today might be a day where we had to change plans.  However, it worked out for us to have 6 iPads to use during Mrs. Wright’s 2nd grade class.

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Once again, students worked in small groups of 3 to put together their poems.  Once again, I was amazed.  There was absolutely no rush to get these poems done.  Students were critically thinking about each book that went into their stack.

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I’m so glad that I added the piece at the end of the lesson for students to tell their story of how they made their poem.  I initially did this just to fill the time while I switched iPads for displaying on the screen.  However, each story revealed the thought process that students went through to craft their poem and revealed new strategies that students might try next time.

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Here’s a look at Mrs. Wright’s class book spine poem gallery:

Book Spine Poetry with Tellagami (Day 1)

IMG_2872Poetry month is one of my favorite times of year because I’m always inspired by what kids come up in their writing.  I love that with poetry you can try so many different kinds of writing in a short amount of time.

Each year, we usually have several classes explore book spine poetry.  If you’ve never heard of it, book spine poetry is a type of found poetry where you use the spines of books as the lines in your poem.  In the past, we’ve used digital cameras to take pictures of our stacks of books and Photo Story to put those pictures together and record our voices.

This year, I really wanted to try something new.  I decided to try Tellagami since you can take a picture as your background image, record your voice for up to 30 seconds, and create an avatar to be the narrator of your poem.  I may try some other tools, too, but this one seemed like the best to start with.

Today, Mrs. Brink’s 2nd grade class was my first book spine poetry class of the year.  Right before they came, I walked through the process of making a book spine poem myself and recording a Tellagami.  Here’s how mine turned out.

We started our quick mini-lesson on the carpet by talking about what a found poem is.  Then, we used several Google and twitter images of book spine poem examples.  Some of my favorites are from my friend, Jennifer Reed, librarian in MA.  I love this one.

We spent a little time noticing things about all of the poems.  For example, we noticed how some of them stuck to a particular theme or some started with a main line at the top and then other lines seemed to support the first line.

Then, I told the students the story of how I made my own poem.  I started with Joyce Sidman’s What the Heart Knows.  Then, I walked around and looked at books that were sitting on the tops of the shelves to see if any of them had a title that showed what my heart knows.  I was amazed at how many of them did!  It only took me about 5 minutes to find my stack of books and another 2 minutes or so to make my Tellagami.

The students were ready and eager to get started.  I really try not to give them too many rules, but we did go over a few things to think about:

1.  Spend some time walking and looking without taking books off of the shelves.

2.  Find a book title that speaks to you that might make a good starting place and then start thinking aloud about your poem with your group.

3.  Try your best to use each book you pull from the shelves.  We spent just a few seconds thinking about what would happen if 22 students starting pulling every book that they saw from the shelves.

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I designated different work areas of the library.  Single tables were setup in the middle of the library for students to bring books to and sort them into their poem.

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Another section of tables had iPads ready for creating Tellagami projects and taking pictures.  I did not spend time teaching students every step of how to use Tellagami because I knew they could figure this out.  However, I did have Carol Buller-McGee, a graduate assistant, with me today, and she stayed at the iPad tables to assist students.

My office, equipment room, makerspace room, and storage room were available for students to go to and record their projects.

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Originally I was going to have students make individual poems, but I made a last minute change to small groups.  The teacher had the whole class stand in a circle and find their own groups of 3.  She assisted students who needed help forming a group.  They went right to work.  It looked something like this.

The teacher and I walked around and talked with students about what they were choosing.  Many of them found one book to start with and started adding books from there.  For example, one group found Please Bury Me in the Library.  Then, they started looking for books that might designate where in the library they might be buried.  I loved how their poem turned out.

Other groups went with a theme.  For example, one group found a book called Dreaming Up, so they started looking for books that had something to do with the sky.  They even went to Destiny and searched for sky books to see if there were any interesting titles.

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I must say that this was the first time that I’ve done book spine poetry where I really felt like kids were thinking about the books going into their stacks.  In the past, it has felt like students just throw a bunch of books in a stack and say they’re done.  While this is still a poem, in my opinion, what I saw today was much more thoughtful and purposeful.

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After students went through the whole process, some of them started again and made a second poem.

We finished by putting our poems up on the projector screen.  I played a poem and we celebrated with snaps.  While I prepped the next iPad, the students talked through the steps that they went through to form their poem.  I really loved this step because it showed me that students really were thinking carefully about each line that went into their poems.

 

I have 3 more classes coming this week, so we’ll see how this lesson evolves across the week.  I think I’m going to stick to small groups rather than individuals, but we’ll see.

Take a moment to enjoy their book spine gallery.

 

Poem In Your Pocket: Live Poetry Cafe 2014 Day 2

Poem In Pocket Day 2 (6)Yesterday, I posted about our annual Poem In Your Pocket Day Cafe.  Today, 13 more classes came to share poetry into our open microphone.  It was a non-stop day filled with wonderful words.  As usual, there were many special moments like a student sharing a poem in Chinese and having his class give him the biggest round of snaps I’ve ever heard.  Listen to their poetry sessions at the links below.

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Boyle Kindergarten

Li Kindergarten

Olin 5th Grade

Watson 1st Grade

Freeman 5th Grade

Brink 2nd Grade

Shealey 4th Grade

Hocking Kindergarten

Ramseyer 2nd Grade

Doneda PreK

Selleck 5th grade

Seeling 4th grade

Stuckey 1st Grade

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We loved having special guests join us online today:

Jovette Francoeur, educational consultant in Montreal, Quebec.

Grandparents in Goshen, CT

Mary Morgan Ryan, librarian in  Illinois

Grandparents from Illinois

Kevin & Diane Fuchs, uncle & aunt from Indiana

Grandparents in Florida

Friends in Boston

Mrs. Hinger, librarian at Clarke Middle School in Athens

And so many more.

Each year, this day holds many special memories for it.  Each year we add something new.  I would love to hear your ideas for how this  event could grow and change next year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poem In Your Pocket: Live Poetry Cafe 2014 Day 1

Poem In Pocket 2014 Day 1 (55)Each year during national poetry month, we host a live poetry cafe in the library.  This event has grown from 1 day to 2 days.  It is our way of celebrating National Poem in Your Pocket Day, even though it usually falls on a day other than the national celebration.  Across the 2 days, every student in the school comes to the library to read poetry into our open microphone.

The tables are set with tablecloths, lanterns, flowers, and some paper flowers, too.

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Each year, we try to add something new.  This year, we added some cozy seating among the tables so that students could feel a bit closer to the student reading his or her poem.

Poem in Your Pocket Poetry Cafe   Smore

This year, we also used a Smore to promote the event and keep everything collected in one spot.  The Smore held our schedule, link for logging in to watch the poems, pictures from the event, and links to the videos once they were recorded.  I also loved that the analytics in the Smore allowed us to see all of the places that our event was being glanced at.

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This year, we also added Twitter to the mix by generating our own hashtag #BarrowPoems

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I used Twitterfall to display the tweets coming through, and the students loved seeing each and every one.  Sometimes I would take a comment out of the chat and tweet it for visitors who didn’t use Twitter themselves.  It was so much fun for the students to know that some of our familiar friends from World Read Aloud Day were watching at times during the day.  Okle Miller (Florida) and Donna MacDonald (Vermont) tuned in to listen.  We also had a library from Rhode Island join us too.

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It was a lot to manage all by myself, but it was fun.  It is truly amazing to watch almost every student in the school get up in front of their peers and share poetry.  It was also inspiring to watch as students stood with their peers who were nervous about sharing.

I hope that you have a few moments to listen to some of the poetry sessions below and share them with friends, families, and students around the world.

Ramsey 3rd Grade

Choate Kindergarten

Em 1st Grade

Carney Kindergarten

Clarke PreK

Slongo 4th Grade

Spurgeon 3rd Grade

Yawn 2nd Grade 

Wright 2nd Grade

Wyatt 1st Grade

Cloutier/Jarvis 3rd Grade

 

We have another packed day tomorrow with poetry readings every 30 minutes from 8-2:30 EST.  Join us!

 

More Heart Poems for Banding Together

heart poems (14)Each time a group of students submits a new batch of heart poems to our Banding Together project, I smile!  They are so honest in their words.  Some of their poems are filled with joy while others are filled with sadness.  I smile because I am so proud of how they are sharing with the world “what their heart knows”.  You can read more about this project here & here.

Heart Poems

Enjoy the newest group of poems submitted yesterday and today.

Sophia David C. Barrow Elementary Treasure and everyone is everything
aesa David C. Barrow Elementary Please find lovable families so you can have food and games and fun!! please!!!!!!
Jonathan David C. Barrow Elementary My four dogs are furry when I run my fingers through their fur.
Martavious David C. Barrow Elementary Michael Jordan is the best.
Derrick David C. Barrow Elementary I would change my front yard because I want a basketball goal.
Sophia David C. Barrow Elementary Mom and Dad are the greatest treasure
Eunwoo David C. Barrow Elementary My parents and my loving sister always Bring me great joy in my heart.
Katherine David C. Barrow Elementary Love to pass to pupil to pupil
jameriya David C. Barrow Elementary Pets make me smile just seeing pets I feel like I’m in pets world.
Katherine David C. Barrow Elementary Joy to you from me
Jayelan David C. Barrow Elementary Family is love
Hamilton David C. Barrow Elementary We long for our family to take care of us
cyra David C. Barrow Elementary every one has happiness in their lives.
niv David C. Barrow Elementary Friends feel like family when you work together
David David C. Barrow Elementary I am scared of me because I get in trouble a lot and I am sensitive.
Jack S David C. Barrow Elementary Nothing is more powerful than Love.
Jermaine David C. Barrow Elementary Love brings me joy
Carinne David C. Barrow Elementary The sun shines on the other side. You bring joy.
Matthew David C. Barrow Elementary Long, poisonous, snakes make me hide
cyra David C. Barrow Elementary one smile grows into more smiles.
clara David C. Barrow Elementary I love to play in the summer breeze all around me
izzy David C. Barrow Elementary watermelon has great taste, strawberries are juicy, lemonade is sweet
and so are you:)
quavarion David C. Barrow Elementary I dream every one have a good day and a good life.
Kyleigh David C. Barrow Elementary Friends stay friends promises stay promises and we do to.
jameriya David C. Barrow Elementary Haunted houses scare me if I go in one I might cry.
jack k. David C. Barrow Elementary I love chocolate.When I think of my best friends.What do you think of chocolate?
Stefan David C. Barrow Elementary My guinea pig’s squeak is like the good morning for me.
Abney Marie David C. Barrow Elementary When frogs croak it brings peace to my ears.
Jamaria David C. Barrow Elementary My family brings joy to me.
Emma David C. Barrow Elementary Sweet, sour: candy is spectaular
Za’Ryiah David C. Barrow Elementary Dogs bring joy by just the lick of it’s tongue.
Cheyten David C. Barrow Elementary Peace is a wonderful sight that brings a heart.
Elizabeth G. David C. Barrow Elementary Love is happiness and it shines like the morning sky.
Aubrey David C. Barrow Elementary Summer summer 1,2,3 summer summer come to me so I can jump into pools oh it’s so much fun pleas summer come!!!
maya David C. Barrow Elementary Dripping wet leaves, a sunny blue sky, the birds and the bears NATURE
John H David C. Barrow Elementary Do what you want to do, reach for your dreams.
Yehyun H. David C. Barrow Elementary The beautiful trees, the beautiful flowers, the beautiful nature.
Jalondra David C. Barrow Elementary love is in our heart and it makes me happy
elijah David C. Barrow Elementary Love never hates.
Audrey David C. Barrow Elementary Love is a story that never ends
Elizabeth G. David C. Barrow Elementary Believe in love if you do it will come right in to you.
Elizabeth G. David C. Barrow Elementary Summer brings me joy.Does it to you? Come right here and count to two.
Audrey David C. Barrow Elementary It flips and it flutters goes all about.
Jihye David C. Barrow Elementary Hugs bring joy hugs bring love.
Jon M David C. Barrow Elementary puppies are joy that has come to life

2014 Barrow Poem In Your Pocket Days are Coming April 3 & 4

The official National Poem In Your Pocket Day is April 24 this year.  Since this date is mixed into our state testing days, we celebrate a bit earlier at Barrow.  Over the past few years, Poem In Your Pocket Day has grown into a 2-day event in our library.  Every class comes to the library across 2 days.  I setup the library like a coffee shop or cafe with a poetic atmosphere:  tables with colorful tablecloths, lanterns, lighting, and a microphone.  Each student steps up to the microphone to share an original or a favorite poem and we celebrate each poem with lots of finger snaps.

Also each year, we have been broadcasting our poetry reading live via Adobe Connect.  This year we will continue this tradition.  I’ve created a Smore to show our schedule and to have access to the login link.

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To view our poetry readings, you simply visit the Adobe Connect link and sign in as a guest.  You will see students reading their poetry and also have a chat window to leave comments for them. To spread the love of Barrow poems to the world, we also encourage you to tweet about our poetry using the hashtag #BarrowPoems  We invite you to tune in to some or all of our readings.  The schedule is packed for 2 whole days.  Our students love knowing that they have a global audience listening and celebrating their poetry.  We will see you next week!

Thursday April 3, 2014

Time

Class

8:30

Ramsey

9:00

Choate

9:30

Em

10:00

Carney

10:30

Clarke

11:00

Slongo

11:30

12:00

Spurgeon

12:30

Yawn

1:00

Wright

1:30

Wyatt

2:00

Jarvis

Friday April 4, 2014

Time

Class

8:00

Boyle

8:30

Li

9:00

Olin

9:30

Watson

10:00

Freeman

10:30

Brink

11:00

Shealey

11:30

12:00

Ramseyer

12:30

Doneda

1:00

Selleck

1:30

Seeling

2:00

Stuckey

 

 

Banding Together with Joyce Sidman and Heart Poems

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Our two schools are part of a wonderful project called “Banding Together”.  In partnership with In This Together Media, the Van Meter third graders kicked this off while working on their Rainbow Loom research projects.  After creating so many beautiful bracelets throughout the project, they wanted to do something special with all of these handmade creations.  They partnered with In This Together Media to bring these bracelets, happiness, and friendship to children from an orphanage in Mangalore, India.  The third graders decided to call the project “Banding Together” and the next step was bringing others onboard to make a difference in the world.

Shannon told Andy about “Banding Together” right away….Van Meter School couldn’t wait for Barrow Elementary to be partners with them too.  Together they would bring so much to the children in India….and to each other.

Recently during a Skype planning session, Andy brought up the idea of incorporating poetry into the Banding Together project.  It started with a wondering.  What if we added short poetry, like a fortune cookie slip, attached to the bracelets?  Shannon said, “Let’s go for it.” And the brainstorming began.
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We both started thinking of possible titles for the short poetry.  We wanted the title to represent the spirit and joy of the Banding Together project.  In looking through poets, we thought of Joyce Sidman and her new book, What the Heart Knows:  Chants, Charms, & Blessings.  In her note to readers, Joyce Sidman writes, “We believe in the power of words themselves.  Why else would we pray, sing, or write?  Finding phrases to match the emotion inside us still brings an explosive, soaring joy.”

That idea of finding a phrase that matches the emotions in our hearts really connected with what we hoped the Banding Together poetry would represent.  Suddenly, we had a thought about our poems.  What if we called them “Heart Poems”?  They would have a connection to our inspiration from Joyce Sidman’s words.  They would represent spreading the joy in our hearts to friends across the miles.  They would also be symbolic of the heart charms that we have been creating on our Makerbot 3D printers.
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We both reached out to Joyce Sidman to share our ideas and see if she would like to meet our students to kickoff the heart poem project.  Not only did she say yes, she pointed us toward a great graphic organizer on her website that would help our students figure out what their heart knows. www.joycesidman.com books what the heart knows chants heart worksheet.pdf.png

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Today our students in Athens, Georgia and Van Meter, Iowa came together with Joyce Sidman via Skype.  After a quick hello and meeting her dog, she read the poem, “Blessing On the Smell of Dog”.  She reminded us that when she is with her dog, she feels like she is home.

This setup the idea that poems come from what he hold in our hearts whether it’s joy, treasures, things we long for, or even what scares us.  Joyce spent time walking through each question on the graphic organizer and giving examples of what the question means to her and why it’s important to think about all of these emotions we hold in our hearts, even the feeling of being scared.

She encouraged our students to write from their hearts.  She also connected with our Banding Together project.  She said, “You’re helping form a bond between you and kids in another part of the world.”
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Our students were able to ask her some questions at the end of our Skype.  When asked why she writes poetry and not other kinds of writing, Joyce said, “I notice the things that are happening around me and I celebrate them.  Poetry allows me to focus on that one thing”.  IMG_2523.JPGIMG_2450.JPG

She also told our students, “Even if there are times when you don’t write, you can always go back to writing from your heart.”

Our students left this experience eager to begin writing heart poems to attach to our Rainbow Loom bracelets.  They will fill out the graphic organizer and then submit their poems using a google form.
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Students can quickly get to this form from Symbaloo or by scanning this QR code.

Poems will go into a spreadsheet when they are submitted which will allow us to easily print them and attach to our bracelets.  Heart Poems  Responses .png

We invite you to join us by submitting your own heart poems.  Use Joyce Sidman’s great graphic organizer and have your students submit their poems in our Google form.  We’ll attach them to bracelets that we have as well as share them with other special friends in coming months.  You can also use the hashtag #heartpoems to share some of your poems on Twitter.

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Thank you, Joyce Sidman, for inspiring this special addition to the Banding Together project, and thank you for taking time to connect with our students.

 

 

 

Poem in Your Pocket Days 2013 (Part 1)

IMG_0428 IMG_0431Today, the first classes came to read their poems in our poetry cafe.  We broadcast the poetry readings via Adobe Connect.  The room was setup with paper tablecloths, paper confetti, lanterns, and flowers in vases.  The microphone was surrounded by fabric and lights with a poet step & stool to read from.  Students read their poems and snapped to celebrate each reader.  Each student got a lollipop when they left.  We had online visitors from: Athens GA, Lexington KY, Buffalo NY, Hinsdale IL, UGA, Jasper GA, Cook County IL, Mason City IA, West Central MN, Bogart GA, Dacula GA, Hall County GA, Colbert GA, Gowrie IA, Fremont IA, and more.

As in the past, the comments from an authentic audience fueled the energy of the students.  They loved hearing shout-outs about their poetry.  An interesting thing that happened was that classes within our school were watching and students in those classes sent shout-outs to brothers and sisters.  It was so sweet to hear words of encouragement between siblings.  Thank you teachers for making that happen.  Each year unexpected, wonderful things happen.  This has become a day we all look forward to.

You can enjoy all of the readings again at the following links:

Shealey 3rd grade

 

Wyatt 1st grade

 

Watson 1st grade

 

Hart 1st grade

 

Selleck 4th grade

 

Wright 2nd grade

 

Freeman 4th grade

 

Stuckey 1st grade

 

Em 1st grade

 

Brink 2nd grade

 

Hocking Kindergarten

 

Yawn 2nd grade

Join us tomorrow, too.

Friday April 12, 2013

Time Class
8:00 5th Cross
8:30 K Carney
9:00 K Boyle
9:30 K Li
10:00 PreK Doneda
10:30 3rd Spurgeon
11:00 4th Olin
11:30 K Vertus
12:00 5th Slongo
12:30 PreK Clarke
1:00 2nd Ramseyer
1:30 3rd Griffith

To login to Adobe Connect, follow these instructions: