Posted in Reading

It’s Not a Stack of Books….it’s a Poem!

One of my favorite picture books is the a short and simple story titled, It’s Not a Box, by Antoinette Portis.  The premise is that a simple box could be anything within your imagination!  This past week our leadership team challenged our staff think “outside the box” to engage kids and “make a difference” in our last few days of school!

As our teachers filtered into our professional development we had 5 stations set up of activities to engage and stimulate their brains!  One of those stations was to create a Book Stack Poem.  We brought 3 crates of picture books and novels out and scattered them across the table.   Teachers were challenged to stack the books so that the titles on the spines created a poem.  They could use 2 or more titles.

Our very own, uber creative, paraprofessional Dottie Gruhler created the poem below.

Can you what I see?
May B
The most magnificent thing
We’re all wonders!

Our fantastically fabulous fourth grade teacher, Lauren Wharton, created this short but, oh so meaningful short stack to express her thoughts:

Out of my mind,
Absolutely truly!

(Side note…this made me giggle AND these are two of my very favorite books!!!)

Ms. Wharton decided that her students would LOVE putting together their own Book Stack Poems and since her library was already in a bit of a disarray they could make their poems and then reorganize their classroom library just before the school year ends so that it is all back in place for incoming fourth graders next fall!  

Poems can often be intimidating for both students and adults to write.  With book stack poems the words are already there, you just have to craft the order to make your own poem.  For our staff it seemed to make it seem less overwhelming.  Not only did our teachers enjoy the challenge of creating a meaningful poem but, many were found books that they had not seen before and they were excited to borrow them for lessons.

If you have your students create Book Stack Poetry be sure to post them on twitter and tag me at @brandeli1974 and use the hashtag #bookstackpoems !

So in your last few days of school, I hope you are able to engage your students and think outside the box.  I would love to hear some of the fabulous things you are doing to make the most of your last few precious days of the school year!