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Module 3 - Poetry Performance
Carmen's Children Poetry Corner

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Poem with Refrain/Chours
Introduction:  Use this poem with a physical ed class, or when talking about the Olympics, track and field or famous runners like Carl Lewis.
The Runner
by Faustin Charles
Agardt, John & Grace Nichols, edited.  (1998)  A Caribbean Dozen:  Poems from Caribbean Poets.  Cambridge:  Candlewick Press. 
ISBN 1564023397
Run, run, runner man,
As fast a you can,
Faster than the speed of light,
Smoother than a bird in flight.
Run, run, runner man,
No one can catch the runner man,
Swifter than an arrow,
Outrunning his own shadow,
Run, run, runner man
Quicker than a rocket!
Into deep space spinning a comet!
Run, run, runner man,
Lighting the heavens of the night,
Run, run, runner man,
Out of sight!
Run, run, runner man, run!
Extension:  Have students illustrate the poem.  Students can write a poem about another sporting event.  This poem could also work as a poem for two voices with the second group reading on the refrain.
Introduction:  This is a good poem to use in a P.E. class or one to use to get the kids up and moving after a long period of sitting.  It could be used to transition between class periods or subjects.
Standing Is Stupid
Silverstein, Shel.  1981.  A Light in the Attic.  New York:  Harper & Row Publishers.
Standing is stupid, (stand up - A)
Crawling's a curse, (crawl - B)
Skipping is silly, (skip - A)
Walking is worse. (walk - B)
Hopping is hopeless, (hop - A)
Jumping's a chore, (jump - B)
Sitting is senseless, (sit - A)
Leanings a bore. (lean - B)
Running's ridiculous (run in place - A)
Jogging's insane - - (jog in place - B)
Guess I'll go upstairs &
Lie down again. (lay down on floor - A & B)
Extension:  Have students brainstorm other actions that can be done and extend the poem to include them.  You could also divide the class into 2 sections and have them say and act every other line (A, B)
Poem by two groups
Introduction:  This poem is hilarious.  I would use it with older elementary students.  It is a great way to discuss point of view.
One two, buckle my shoe.
                                                      "Buckle your own shoe!
Who said that?
                                                      "I did.  What are you doing with those silly
                                                      buckles on your shoes anyway?"
Three, four, shut the door.
                                                       "You shut it--you opened it."
Er . . . five, six, pick up sticks.
                                                      "Why should I pick them up--do you think
                                                       I'm your slave?  Buckle my shoe, shut the
                                                       door, pick up sticks, next thing you'll be
                                                       telling me to lay them straight."
But it's only a poem . . . Nine, ten, a big fat . . . oh never mind.
Extension:   Divide the class into two groups and have students recite the poem.  Students could also do the actions that accompany the poem.  Assign children other nursery rhymes and have them create a diaogue to go with them and then perform them.
Introduction:  Explain and model the linearound concept before beginning.  This poem would be great at the beginning of the school year when teachers are introduction the classroom rules.
Kuskin, Karla.  1980.  Dogs & Dragons/Trees & Dreams.  New York:  HarperCollins
A - Do not jump on ancient uncles.
B -Do not yell at average mice.
C - Do not wear a broom to breakfast.
D - Do not ask a snake's advice.
E - Do not bathe in chocolate pudding.
F - Do not talk to bearded bears.
G - Do not smoke cigars on sofas.
H - Do not dance on velvet chairs.
I -  Do not take a whale to visit
Russell's mother's cousin's yacht.
J - And whatever else you do do
K - It is better you
Do not.
Extension:  As a class, think things that you should not do at school and create a new linearound poem.  Create another linearound poem on a different topic such as siblings.
Poem to be Sung
Introduction:  Make sure the children know the tune of the song used before trying to sing the poem.  Have students discuss things people do that bother them or "gets on theri nerves."
Mother's Nerves
sung in the tune of 99 Bottles of Pop
Kennedy, X. J.  (2002).  Exploding Gravy:  Poems to Make You Laugh.  New York:  Little, Brown, & Company.
ISBN 0316384232
My mother said, "If just once more
I hear you slam that old screen door,
I'll tear out my hair!
I'll dive in the stove!"
So I gave it a bang and in she dove.
Extension:  Of course the obvious would be to have the children sing the poem.  After a few practices, the poem could be sung in rounds.   Use one of the other favorite poems  of the class and put it to music.

Poetry is being, not doing.
e.e. cummings