Sixth in a series! Poem: "Valentines for Friends"
With Valentine's Day in mind, the poem, "Valentines for Friends," models verses written in the traditional "Roses are red..." format. The content of the verses is appropriate for boys and girls, because it focuses on friendship. The verses can also serve as examples for students to write their own Valentine poems.
Copies of the poem, "Valentines for Friends," can be used for fluency and word work activities during initial instruction. Copies can also be included in booklets for partner reading. When teachers use student-friendly poetry for repeated reading opportunities, reluctant readers can be encouraged and motivated to engage in literacy activities that will increase their fluency, phonics skills, decoding abilities, sight word recognition, and, ultimately, their comprehension. Familiar rereading of poems can be especially effective for struggling and emergent readers.
The poem and activities in the guide have been used successfully with elementary students in urban and suburban school settings. The students included ESL, RTI, and Reading Intervention students, along with Regular Ed students. A two-page teacher's guide with suggestions for week-long mini-lessons is included with the original poem.
Consistent use of weekly poems for familiar rereading and word work have contributed to increased reading fluency results for my students on Curriculum Based Measurement (CBM) assessments. Increased fluency has also positively impacted their reading results on Discovery Education tests.
Susan Weaver Jones