April is National Poetry Month, a celebration of literary creativity that began in 1996.
image by John Morgan
Why do kids love poetry? For one thing, it's fun. Rhymes, silly metaphors, hilarious onomatopoeia - poetry has it all. Another thing poetry offers is a safe space for exploring emotions that can sometimes feel scary. Reading and writing poetry is a great way to process a wide range of issues, from the death of a pet or grandparent to the loss of a stuffy, the fear of a new school to the excitement of a vacation.
One way to celebrate with the young people is the Dear Poet Project, where young people can listen to authors read their work aloud and write response letters for possible publication and a return letter from the chosen poet. Making a personal connection with a poet can be very rewarding!
If your kids need help getting inspired, check out the book Explore Poetry! With 25 Great Projects. Writing exercises and fun activities help readers flex their creative muscles and bring out their inner Shel Silverstein. Click here for a free poetry activity from Explore Poetry!