Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Poetry and Testing

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April is poetry month. This month I will be crafting and sharing original poems. Often, these poems will be messy and early drafts. Many of us are sharing our poems on twitter using the hashtag, #digipoetry. We hope you join us!


Yesterday was a long day. I was supposed to give a test to the students, but for many, many reasons I needed to reschedule at the last minute. Stuck without a prepared lesson, I decided that we'd LEAP into poetry. Instead of a day of silence where the students would be testing, this is what my classroom looked like...




Students engaged in discussion...reading and writing poetry. It did my heart good to see their work and to hear their words. Here are some list poems that came out of yesterday. They were invited to write about anything that was on their minds...notice how TESTING comes up a couple of times?!?!



The way they express themselves inspires me. I wrote them apology poems about testing. I haven't shared these poems with the students yet, but I'll share them here. Messy drafts directly from my notebook that express my frustrations and my dreams for them...



We will survive these tests. We will continue to read and write and learn from each other.

I was frustrated that I couldn't "get the test over with" yesterday, but if I had...look at what I would have missed. We will live to test another day. 


13 comments:

  1. I was supposed to do test prep yesterday, too, but instead had my fourth graders experiment with paint chip poetry. Frustration and "rebellion" must've been in the air! Don't we wish that someone important would realize that when a kid writes FOURTEEN poems in an hour (most of them good), that experience does more for her reading/writing life than the results of a multiple choice test taken on one particular morning. Ugh.

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  2. Sorry for the testing, but love what you shared, that zigzag poem is wonderful, like the others & yours, Michelle. Love that you shared the pics, I'm assuming in waterlogged-makes them wonderful, doesn't it?

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  3. You leapt and wow what wonderful things you made with your kiddos. I love the pictures and the poetry. Poetry seems to be the relief valve during testing. Good luck when testing does happen, they will survive and go on to write another day, thanks to you.

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  4. We are about to begin the last round of PARCC - so testing fatigue is something I get. BUT - how smart to leap into poetry!

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  5. We are about to begin the last round of PARCC - so testing fatigue is something I get. BUT - how smart to leap into poetry!

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  6. My students are working on poetry projects and we found a poem today called Bubbles. Hilarious. It's about test bubbles. I can't remember the author or the book. I think it was Caroline Kennedy's book and the author was Jane Yolen.
    Poetry is a nice break from whatever ails you. I have bribed my students lately by promising Chalkabration.

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  7. Yes, testing will always be there! What a great way to modify and adjust. I love your poem and your pictures too!

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  8. These are priceless assessments and PROOF that you have empowered them to think, reason and reflect. Perhaps they should write poems for the CCS assessments?????hmmmm

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  9. These are priceless assessments and PROOF that you have empowered them to think, reason and reflect. Perhaps they should write poems for the CCS assessments?????hmmmm

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  10. I love the rhythm of your line that reads "success would be measured by smiles/kind words"--so true. Sounds like you all had a delightfully creative day!

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  11. Well worth the time you spent. The test doesn't go away but at least you came away from the day with a great list of poem and kids who probably really appreciated the time to be creative.

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  12. Oh The Test. I'm working on some writing right now to express some things I've chosen to do because of that. The poetry you have written is beautiful. Tell your students, I enjoyed the poetry they wrote as well!

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  13. Success should not be measured in numbers.

    Cathy

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