TEACH LIVING POETS BY LINDSAY ILLICH & MELISSA ALTER SMITH
If you are familiar with the Teach Living Poets website or the #TeachLivingPoets community on Twitter, you will want to get your hands on this professional resource. If you aren’t already acquainted with the work of Teach Living Poets, be sure to spend some time with it this month!
Lindsay Illich and Melissa Alter Smith have created a professional resource that celebrates the work of contemporary poets and the incredible thinking students will do when we put compelling poetry in their hands and create the conditions for them to grow their understanding about it together. As they write in the introduction:
To quote Kevin Akbar, we are living in “a golden age of poetry” (“The Rumpus”). We hope this book helps us open up the world of contemporary poetry and renews your passion for language and literature, which is so vital to engaged teaching. Indeed, in our own writing and teaching lives, reading and engaging in this world has opened us to a flood of generosity from writers and other educators, invaluable gifts that led us to write this book. We hope it will lead you to your own projects that will be gifts to others.
Teach Living Poets is overflowing with ideas for bringing contemporary poetry (and poets) into the classroom. It features lessons and resources that you can implement right away as well as examples of student responses and written work. I especially appreciate the way the classroom snapshots highlight many teacher voices by incorporating activities shared by contributors to the website. Each chapter includes dozens of recommended poems—so be warned it can be a slow read if you, like me, stop and google every title and poet, but I promise it will be totally worth it.
If you are looking for ways to incorporate contemporary poetry into your reading and writing workshop, I highly recommend adding Teach Living Poets to your professional resource library.