I won’t always use themed posts for my blog like some teachers do, but I like to give credit where credit is due, and that means I need to acknowledge that today’s post is inspired by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater over at The Poem Farm.
The City of Urbana is holding a special writing contest for school-age children as part of its 180th birthday celebration. Students are invited to write limericks about Urbana and submit them for judging. There will be awards for different age categories. I wanted to make sure my students had an opportunity to participate, but this meant I needed to make sure they knew what a limerick was!
Enter my father-in-law, Dr. Reger, who has been a visitor to my classroom a couple of times in the past. I asked him how he felt about his limerick-writing skills and he informed me that he is a licensed limericist. (I actually looked it up to make sure that such a thing really existed. It does. At least, the limericist part does. Not so sure about the licensure.)
I did some pre-teaching on poetry and limericks today as a warm-up, and then Dr. Reger came in and spent about 35 minutes with my class, teaching them the rhythm and order of limericks, sharing the history, and then giving students the opportunity to try their hands at writing their own. A few brave souls wanted to read their limericks aloud and I made a video so that we could better share them with our adoring fans.
Not too shabby for less than an hour of prep work! We are going to look more at poetry in the coming weeks, including reading Sharon Creech’s wonderful novel-in-verse, Love That Dog, and poems by authors like Roald Dahl and Shel Silverstein. My hope is that at least some of my students will identify this particular form of expression as something they find aesthetically pleasing and interesting to both consume and produce.
Happy Poetry Friday!