4th stop on my blog tour for AFTER DARK

Hi everyone,

As the blog tour for AFTER DARK continues, today I am delighted that Sylvia Vardell is hosting at PoetryForChildren https://poetryforchildren.blogspot.com Thank you, Sylvia!

If you’ve followed the first three stops on the tour, you know that each one is different. Many of you have been helping through your own networks and for that I’m very grateful too.

My thanks to all!

On another issue, we’ve all seen the posting of student poems by teachers fall from robust to zero most months, especially since the introduction of Common Core State Standards a few years ago, which took away nearly all of a teacher’s time and focused on analyzing over writing. Over the weekend I’ve had a conversation with Rachelle Burk, who wanted to add my blog site to her suggested list of places where students can get some attention with their writing, but Rachelle became discouraged by how confusing the instructions were on the Young Poets W.O.M. Poems page plus the lack of contributions she found there.

With all that in mind I’ve made an effort to rewrite the page as you see here. Please give my your thoughts about the new page plus — especially — how we might go about attracting teachers across the country (and elsewhere) to get back in the habit of posting their students’ poems here. Many thanks!

Young Poets W.O.M. Poems

Dear Teachers,

When you are looking for ways to inspire your students to write poems, this is a special place to show off some results. Every month I post a new word and invite students of all ages to write a poem inspired by that one word. Poets in the adult category write poems based on the same word.

Young poets have been featured here since 2009. Two of the first ones are now in college and one is going into journalism.

Getting your students “published” is easy and free. Here is all you need to do.
1. Choose up to three poems per classroom to post (per month).
2. If your kids are under 13, please have on file a permission slip signed by a parent or legal guardian.
3. To post a poem, scroll down to the box at the bottom of the screen where it says LEAVE A REPLY and paste the poem there.
4. Please include the student’s name, grade, school, and city in the post.
5. Hit button to submit.
Adults who follow my blog are primarily teachers, librarians, and children’s writers or artists. You can rest assured that your students will see notes of encouragement and appreciation posted about their work. This is above all a friendly BlogSpot!

At the end of each month I erase all poems and comments and we start over with a new word. I hope to see your students join the fun.

Sincerely,

David

PS: The word for February is AGE

David

Thanks to Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong

Hi everyone,

This week I received a royalty check for five of my poems that are in various Pomelo books published by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong in their line of poetry collections. It was a reminder of how much these two have contributed to the state of poetry in our country. Not since Kent Brown created Wondsong at Highlights dedicated to publishing children’s poetry has anyone done as much for the genre and the people who write it. Thank you, Sylvia and Janet. I appreciate the check, but I love what you have done.

Thank you, Sylvia Vardell

Hi everyone,

This week Sylvia Vardell, my friend and beloved authority on children’s literature, does me the honor of posting about my journey as a writer on her famous blog. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to drop over to Sylvia’s and have a look. http://poetryforchildren.blogspot.com/
Sylvia, thank you again for all you do for those who create literature for young people. You are a blessing.

No Water River alert

Hi everyone,

I loved TLA again this year. It’s an exceptional conference. I heard a guess that 15,000 attended but don’t have any true numbers yet. Yesterday I enjoyed very much being one of five featured poets in the 14th annual Poetry Round Up. The others were Jorge Argueta, Janet Wong, Margarita Engle (current U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate), and Juan Felipe Herrera (former United States Poet Laureate). We each read for a while and I loved hearing from the other four. My thanks again to Sylvia Vardell for including me.

Are you enjoying Renee La Tulippe’s wonderful month-long celebration of Poetry Month at No Water River? Don’t miss it! Already she has featured Margarita Engle, Nikki Grimes, Lita Judge, LaNay Brown-Wood, Janet Wong, and Leslea Newman. Today it’s Pat Mora and tomorrow it’s my turn. I hope you’ll check it out at http://www.nowaterriver.com

Getting ready for Texas

Hi everyone,

Today I’m pulling the last of my thoughts together for next week’s TLA conference in Dallas. TLA is always a great conference. Boyds Mills is sponsoring me to mark the publication of CRAWLY SCHOOL FOR BUGS and I’ll also sign the new title, A PLACE TO START A FAMILY for Charlesbridge.

On Tuesday I’ll be part of a gang of poets in Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong’s pre-con workshop taking turns talking about selected subjects. I chose “Science through Poetry.”

On Wednesday I’ll join Sylvia, Janet, and others to speak about poetry related subjects. My topic is “Word of the Month Poetry Challenge.”

I’ll wind up on Thursday being a featured poet in another Sylvia classic: Poetry Roundup. I have 8-9 minutes to read some of my poems and I look forward to it. I enjoy hearing other poets read their work too.