A few months ago I learned that the first graders would be studying poetry in the last trimester. As part of that segment, they would be reading and writing poetry and working together to critique each other’s work. Then each student would select their best poem (what they thought was best) and read it at the First Grade Poetry Café.
Juliana did her own hair and it was neatly pulled back in the front and somewhat less smooth in the back. A 100% authentic Juliana look. They all wore black t-shirts and jeans for the event and instead of clapping for their peers, they snapped their fingers.
The poems were divided into categories and each category was introduced by one of the students. Each poem included a picture that was displayed on the Smart Board behind the student as they read their poem.
There were poems about people and animals and places and sounds. Several poems made me laugh and a few brought tears to my eyes. One of the girls wrote a short poem titled – My Godmother Died – I wasn’t expecting such deep content from a first grader.
Juliana’s poem was included in the section about Sounds. Poems included: Sounds I hear at school, Zoo Noise, and Juliana’s poem Outside.
Outside by Juliana Connelly
Outside you can hear birds
chirp chirp chirp
You can hear the wind blow
f f f f f f f f f f f f
Hear the trees sway
sh sh sh sh sh sh
clik clik clik
Hear the bees
buzz buzz buzz
I was so proud of how confidently she stepped up on the platform to read her poem loud and clear. I was incredibly shy in first grade; I bet I would have whispered. When we first started to talk about Poetry Night, she told me that she was scared to talk into the microphone in front of everyone. A few weeks ago she told me that she was still nervous but if she was going to be famous someday, she would need to get used to being in front of lots of people.
When the event was over, Juliana happily ran off to the playground to play with a few of her friends. Always the social butterfly.