Why Kids Write
As mentioned on Kids Learn To Blog, there is an increasing interest for kids to write their own poetry. If you are a kid and writing is not your favorite subject at school, poetry can help with that. It is a tool for learning the fundamentals of language arts and writing. Most of the time, poetry is shorter and filled with more imagery and mystery than prose, making the reading experience a little more fun. Poetry, while it teaches young students, also often results in a long lasting interest in writing, so students will often begin to have their own favorite poems, old and new.
Around the middle school age, kids will have learned to progress from menial, structured writing assignments to assignments requiring a bit of sophistication in their language as well as creativity. Kids should have already touched onto poetry territory, as they should start delving into the classic poems of famous poets, such as Robert Frost or Edgar Allen Poe. The beginning of this adolescent age also marks the genesis of outward creative expression from kids. Kids express themselves through the way they dress, the music they listen to, the activities they participate in outside school, and more recently, through the internet. Each of these forms of expression acts as an outlet for kids’ personalities, but poetry introduces a new way for kids to express themselves.
Famous and Favorite Poems
The most famous and favorite poems, old and new, are the ones regarding love, joy, or melancholy (as exhibited by poets such as Emily Dickinson). Famous poems from the past are also known for telling stories, such as the works of Shakespeare, Greek classics such as the Odyssey or the Iliad, and even the fables from kindergarten days. Using these ideas of poetry in mind, kids can realize that songs they listen to everyday are also poetry with their very own rhythms, metaphors, poetic structures, and stories. They can also infer that most of the famous poets of the past and present gather inspiration from their daily lives to write, which will become the foundation for kids’ writing.
Most students between middle school and high school age tend to write poetry about their personal lives from everything between school, home life, future dreams, schoolgirl/boy crushes, original stories, nature, philosophy, and everything else that runs through the mind of a preteen. For some students, writing poetry becomes their outlet for creative expression, and sometimes leads to a love for writing.
Obviously, poetry might not interest every student, and maybe not even very many. However, having an interest in writing and being able to understand poems can substantially help in the long run for a middle school student. It is good practice for expressing themselves, their thoughts, and their opinions eloquently onto paper.
How Writing Helps
The same fundamentals put into poetry can be used in every other form of writing, whether it is essay writing, song writing, speechmaking, or even storytelling. The things that we learn, such as rhyme, tone, diction, imagery, and rhetoric improve our writing skills, which proves to be very useful when taking SAT’s, ACT’s, AP tests, and even in college. It teaches us to look further into words and what is written; to see that there is a purpose to every word, every structure of a poem, every stanza. It teaches us to think outside of the box, and to use our own interpretations to figure out what a writer is trying to tell us.
Learning from reading classic and favorite poems, old and new, through school, parents, friends, books, or even through online sources can increase a young student’s intellectual and writing skills. Not only does writing your own poetry challenge you to use a variety of word choice, thus increasing your vocabulary, but it also challenges you to construct your very own mysterious messages, images, and metaphors. One who perfects these skills in their own poetry is likely to succeed in further assignments in the subjects of reading comprehension and literature. Being able to a successfully analyze poetry while expressing your own interpretation is a great skill that especially comes in handy when writing essays that depend on deep analysis and argument. With all these benefits, there really is no downside to studying poetry.
Tips for Parents and Students
Parents: Introduce some of your favorite poems, old and new to your children. In fact, start as early as you can! It can be a learning and bonding experience for both you and your children.
Kids: Don’t be intimidated by poetry or the idea that you can’t write good verse. Sometimes it can be a pain to try and figure out what some dead person tried to tell you with their deep poems, but as long as you keep an open mind full of possibilities, it will become easier.
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