Once we get comfortable sharing poetry with young people, it can be especially meaningful to share SETS of poetry gathered around similarities. Such “text sets” can prompt lessons of compare/contrast and discussion of poetic voice, stylistic choices, etc. The following text sets are presented in four categories: for very young children (ages 0-5), for elementary aged children (ages 5-12), for middle school (ages 11-14), and for young adults (ages 13 and up). However, these are general recommendations based on overall readability and appeal. These poetry selections are certainly suitable for a much wider age range. Each mini set includes 3 or more poetry books authored by one poet, focused on a single topic or theme, and formatted to be very similar in design and appearance. This aids in guiding discussion, comparison, and analysis.
The list includes, for example:
Elliott, David. 2008. On the Farm. Somerville, MA: Candlewick.
Elliott, David. 2010. In the Wild. Somerville, MA: Candlewick.
Elliott, David. 2012. In the Sea. Somerville, MA: Candlewick.
Identity and friendship
Grimes, Nikki. 1994. Meet Danitra Brown. New York: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard.
Grimes, Nikki. 2002. Danitra Brown Leaves Town. New York: HarperCollins.
Grimes, Nikki. 2005. Danitra Brown, Class Clown. New York: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard.
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!