If you haven’t caught on, I love my literacy stations. My favorite center is my poetry station. I am a sucker for good children’s poems and I love to incorporate poetry into any literacy lesson that I can.
But my usual poetry station has a shared binder with poems in them that each student touches. Uh-oh. That’s out.
And a pocket chart that the kiddos arrange the poem written on sentence strips. Uh-oh again.
And a fun little frog flyswatter pointer that they share to read the poem… Darn. What now?
Poetry For First Grade: Pocket Chart
You can use a pocket chart! Just make sure you’re the only one to touch it. If you’re in the classroom and able to have a few kids sit at the rug, do a choral reading of the poem. Otherwise, keep your pocket chart prominently displayed for the whole class to see.
Poetry Station Materials
So a shared binder is out. Instead, maybe copy a month’s worth of poems, but collate and staple them into packets, so each student can have their own. But of course, if you know me at all, you’re ready for me to say, “GO DIGITAL.” Will I miss my binders? Of course. Do I think 100% digital resources is the most effective way for a first grader to learn. Nope. But right now, it’s the safest thing before I can go back to the hybrid model I used. (Book in one had, iPad on their lap).
What Materials Work for Poetry For First Grade
Head over to the post I wrote about digital resources. Just like any digital resource, you’ll have to figure out if you want to make, share with colleagues or purchase. My rule of thumb is that you make what you are skilled at teaching. It’ll come more naturally to you and you don’t have to overthink it as much. Then, look to your grade level. Play to your strengths! Each teacher makes what subject they feel the strongest, and you share resources. And the rest, you buy. You aren’t going to have time to make everything from scratch. So find quality resources that will fit your needs and buy them. Remember, you’ll have them for next year too!
If independent poetry station materials are a purchase that you’d like to make, check out the nursery rhyme units in my shop! I was fortunate enough to team up with Mr. J, Children’s Musician to create these products. Best part is that they are a blend of traditional and digital… so you’ll get both for one price!
How To Go Digital
Once you start learning how to use a digital platform to assign activities, it becomes muscle memory. Two things to keep in mind. 1) Try to stick with the same platform you have been using with your kiddos. This avoids confusion and the need to be “tech support” on a newer program. 2) Ask for help. Find the go-to person on your team to help you when you get stuck. Stick around Teaching Firsties to see the articles I have, and reach out to see if I can talk you through a technology problem, I’m happy to help!