Linworth Libraries Unlimited

Rhymes and Reasons

Librarians & Teachers Using Poetry to Foster Literacy

by Jane Heitman

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Cover image for Rhymes and Reasons

January 2003


Pages 120
Volumes 1
Size 8 1/4x11
Topics Librarian's Instructional Role/Teaching Resources, K-12
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Bring out the poet in your students! These activities are engaging and easy-to-use with great ideas for quick implementation and little preparation. Poetry is a wonderful catalyst for helping students understand and appreciate written and oral language. And this book includes a variety of activities and poetry types to reinforce language elements such as the alphabet, syllables, words, and phrases. Create a fun, unique learning atmosphere with poetry!

Author Info

Jane Heitman is an interlibrary loan technician at Mesa State College in Grand Junction, CO.



"Taking a different approach to reading instruction and support, Rhymes and Reasons is useful for librarians, teachers, or, preferably, both in fostering literacy in the lower grades. The author, a former teacher and school librarian, presents activities that use poetry and its elements to teach or reinforce basic reading skills. The book sets the foundation by starting with alphabet activities, then proceeds to build on that with ideas for teaching syllables, words, and phrases. The last sections deal with expressing thoughts and feelings through poetry. Activities are clearly presented with materials needed listed first, variations on the activity, and particular grade levels noted as appropriate. Many items also have additional print or Web resources listed at the end. A helpful item on each is the AASL (American Association of School Librarians) Information Literacy and NCTE (National Council Teachers of English) standards met by each activity. A Web site is given in the introductory material that lists the standards. End materials include a glossary, bibliography for print and Web resources, and indexes for author/ title and subject. Though the material can be used by one teacher, collaboration is encouraged and several subject areas can be brought in to the process. There are many wonderful ideas here. The directions are clear and easy to follow; the poems suggested are well chosen, and the material genuinely helpful and practical. The book can help foster not only literacy, but an appreciation of poetry, as well. Highly Recommended."—Library Media Connection

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