Monday, April 2, 2012

Guidelines for Evaluating Poetry Books for Young People

How do we evaluate poetry? Clearly poetry is different from prose in its form and structure. But poetry has poetic elements that give it distinctiveness: rhythm, sound, language, imagery, and emotion. As you read poems, you can probably say whether you like them or not. Saying WHY you like them can be more challenging.

The list includes:

Consider the book as a whole. Use the following guidelines based on questions developed by Goforth (1998) which provide assistance in evaluating individual poetry books.
*Are the poems appropriate for young people?
*Is there a balance and variety of poems?
*Is the book well organized and designed?
*Do the illustrations complement or overpower the poems?
*Does the book make you want to read more poems by this poet (or anthologist)?

For more details, get your copy of The Poetry Teacher’s Book of Lists.
And if you already have the book and would like to offer additions, corrections, or other input, please do so in the COMMENTS area. Thanks!

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