Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Slice of Life & NPM Day 25: The Letter V, Day 2

Today I join my fellow bloggers in "serving up a slice" 
to the Tuesday Slice of Life (SOL) community.
Thanks to Stacey, Betsy, Beth, Kathleen, Deb, Lisa, Melanie, and Lanny
 for hosting this meeting place each Tuesday and nurturing our writing lives.

I'm a heavy user user of the library.  And I keep returning to certain favorites.  I try to restrict myself to library usage only, but sometimes despite my firm resolve, I find myself purchasing for my private use. And that brings me to today's slice of life about a favorite library title that I finally broke down and bought for myself.  I would check it out, renew it two more times, and then return it, only to request it again as soon as it hit the return slot at the library.  So as a retirement gift to myself, I finally purchased Poetry Aloud 2:  Sharing Poetry with Children by Sylvia M. Vardell.   The copy I had used so often was the purple and green first edition.
My book spine poem for NPM 2017:

She walks in beauty
A jar of tiny stars
Awakening the heart
Opening a door
House of light 
Pass the poetry, please!

Continuing my alphabetic stroll
through National Poetry Month 
with the second of two posts on 
the letter V . . . 

And that brings me to today's focus for my alphabetic stroll through poetry, the letter V.   Meet the vivacious Sylvia Vardell!  I believe I first met Sylvia Vardell in the pages of Book Links magazine as the regular poetry columnist.   And then I fell in love with her book, Poetry People:  A Practical Guide to Children's Poets (which I also checked out over and over).  She served as my guide to  the wonderful world of children's poetry.  And somewhere along the way, I discovered her blog, Poetry for Children.   I was over the moon excited when Sylvia and Janet Wong came out with a Friday Poetry Anthology for Middle School.  

And I finally met Sylvia in person at the 2014 NCTE conference when I attended a Reading Poetry Across the Curriculum session chaired by Janet Wong and Laura Purdie Salas.  Sylvia led one of the roundtable groups that I selected for this session, Poetry and Social Studies.  But I was totally distracted by reading her awesome tights which had lines of poetry inscribed on them.  In the fall of 2016, I attended Poetry Camp (for grownups) at Western Washington University.  Sylvia and Janet were the hosts for this event.  I wrote about poetry camp in this Poetry Friday celebration.  And I'm just wondering . . . will there be another Poetry Camp sometime in the future?

One of the wonderful things about Sylvia is her generosity in sharing poetry with teachers.  If you haven't visited her blog series for Poetry Month, stop now and visit her Learning from Students series.  She shares poetry activities from her graduate students' students.  It's an incredible peek into the world of what kids are thinking and writing and sharing.  Don't miss it!  And while you're there, you'll be inspired by this valued emissary of poetry, Sylvia Vardell.  


  1. I have Poetry People, too. We need to start our own library, Ramona. It was a help to me when introducing different poets. That's such fun to hear about you renewing and renewing. You really have made this April venture of yours into something so valuable. I wish all teachers could keep it somehow as a source. Happy Tuesday!

  2. oohhh...if you hear of another poetry camp, I'd love to know! I also find myself checking out and re-checking out favorites. Thank you for ALL you share, Ramona!

  3. I remember Sylvia's tights from that NCTE, too! Thanks for today's poetry post - I'm tucking it away as a valuable resource.

  4. Three cheers for Sylvia and her championing of poetry for students! I can't wait to hear how Amy connects with letter Q! -- Christie @ https://wonderingandwondering.wordpress.com/blog/

    1. I gave her the honorary title as queen of poetry!

  5. Wow - I have a missed this person in all the years I was teaching. Thanks for sharing. I am off to explore her work. Love it!

  6. I, too, remember Sylvia's tights at NCTE-a conference that I never ran into you-how sad, Ramona. Poetry People sounds like a book that will inspire me.

  7. What a terrific post. I hope there will be another Poetry Camp for sure.

  8. I have Vardell's and Wong's The Poetry Friday Anthology, which is wonderful. I love that she had poetry tights - reminds me of meeting Linda Sue Park, who had a dress with books all over it. :-) I love your spine poem. They don't always work well, but yours is perfect!