1. What do you want to build on in the Group Performance of Poetry?
2. List some strategies for audience participation that you and your group are considering for your Group Performance of Poetry? What is the purpose of the audience participation (what will it teach us, how will it engage us, what feeling will it give us, etc.) Be sure to relate this to the development of the age you are performing for. (Age group for elementary students).
3. Write a definition of poetry which would sing to kids the age of those for whom you and your group are performing.
4. If you were an elementary or middle school teacher, what three strategies in the classroom would you undertake to ensure your students experienced inclusive and diverse literature throughout the school year? Why do you your these strategies would be particularly effective? Thinking beyond the classroom, what strategy would you advocate for at the school level, the district-level or state wide to ensure inclusion and diversity in children’s literature in the school?
5) Explore this quote from Christopher Myers in “The Apartheid of Children’s Literature”: ” We adults — parents, authors, illustrators and publishers — give them in each book a world of supposedly boundless imagination that can delineate the most ornate geographies, and yet too often today’s books remain blind to the everyday reality of thousands of children. Children of color remain outside the boundaries of imagination. The cartography we create with this literature is flawed.
“Perhaps this exclusivity, in which children of color are at best background characters, and more often than not absent, is in fact part of the imaginative aspect of these books. But what it means is that when kids today face the realities of our world, our global economies, our integrations and overlappings, they all do so without a proper map. They are navigating the streets and avenues of their lives with an inadequate, outdated chart, and we wonder why they feel lost. They are threatened by difference, and desperately try to wish the world into some more familiar form. As for children of color, they recognize the boundaries being imposed upon their imaginations, and are certain to imagine themselves well within the borders they are offered, to color themselves inside the lines.”
6) What’s the most interesting information you’ve learned about your group’s poet? (The poet is Naomi Shihab Nye)
Attached is poems by Naomi Shihab Nye, for you to get little understanding of the poet.