What is the Poetic Classroom?
Many people see poetry as merely a school subject, just fancy words on a page. But since teaching is done with language, poetry can be used in every subject, even science and math. A poetic classroom uses five basic poetic moves.
1. It jumps with Rhythm.
In the poetic classroom students snap their fingers, tap their feet, and clap their hands. Chants reinforce ideas, aid in memorization, and unify the class. We don't have to be musicians to use the power of rhythm.
2. It paints Pictures.
In the poetic classroom students experience all the senses. Sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and textures all fix ideas in young minds. We don't have to be artists to use the power of images.
3. It introduces Characters.
The poetic classroom invites memorable personalities, both real and imagined, into the lesson. Characters bring life and personality to ideas. Playwrights aren't the only ones to use the power of characters.
4. It creates Metaphors.
The poetic classroom uses comparisons to help students understand ideas in new ways. We don't have to be poets to use the power of metaphor.
5. It embraces Conflict.
The poetic classroom uses conflicting and contrasting views to take students to new levels of understanding. We don't have to be novelists to use the power of conflict.