Laura's Blog
Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Hello, poetry friends! Welcome back to Northfield Elementary School. Today, the third graders are sharing some of their fractured fairy tale poems. This is an exercise in point of view. We started the workshop by gathering in groups, each assigned to a classic fairy tale. The students brainstormed a list of characters in, for example, […]

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Tomorrow is the poetry celebration at Northfield Elementary School. The student poets are welcoming family and friends for a reading and poetry tour of the five third grade classrooms. I’ve been doing an elementary school workshop on odes for many years. This time around, I swapped out my usual model poem and got these poets […]

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Happy Poetry Friday and welcome back to Northfield Elementary School. Today, the third grade poets are working on odes. I’ve been doing an elementary school workshop on odes for many years. Usually, my model poem is “Ode to Pablo’s Tennis Shoes,” by Gary Soto. When it’s time to write, I have the kids take off […]

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The Northfield Elementary poets have been working hard on their list poems. Today, our lists of juicy words take us inside a desk and a pencil box, explore a beautiful garden, and dig down into the earth. The mentor text for my list poem workshop is Naomi Shihab Nye’s “Words in My Pillow” from the […]

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Monday, 28 May 2018

Our beloved historic downtown has been hit with its second catastrophic flash flood in less than two years. If you would like to help with recovery and restoration efforts, please consider donating to the Downtown Ellicott City Partnership. In 2016, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater asked me to contribute a current events poem to her wonderful collection, POEMS ARE […]

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Thursday, 24 May 2018

Welcome back to Northfield Elementary School, Poetry Friday friends. This is my twelfth year as Northfield’s poet-in-residence, working with the third grade team. The annual poetry residency is sponsored by the school PTA’s cultural arts committee, and by an Artist-in-Residence grant from the Maryland State Arts Council. Thank you! This has been a great teaching partnership […]

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To celebrate the last Poetry Friday of National Poetry Month, I’d like to introduce you to Henry Crawford. This fall, Henry was a featured reader at Wilde Readings — the local literary series I co-host with poets Ann Bracken and Linda Joy Burke. I was intrigued by the way Henry’s work as a lawyer and […]

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Thursday, 12 April 2018

Shh! Welcome, but come in quietly. It’s a Poetry Friday surprise birthday party. The guest of honor? Lee Bennett Hopkins! (Whoops — no exclamation points. We’re trying to keep this party a secret.) Lee is not only a wonderful children’s poet and Guinness World Record holding anthologist (really — the citation is here), he has […]

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Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Happy National Poetry Month, everyone! The paperback edition of The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary comes out this week. To celebrate, I’m doing a *big* giveaway: A class set of books for one lucky teacher or librarian! How do you enter? Simple. I want to hear — and share — how your students are […]

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It’s Texas Library Association week! Come say hello. This is where I will be: Tuesday 4/3 Pre-conference Poetry Rodeo 1-5 pm Hosted by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong of Pomelo Books Jen Bryant and I are doing a short presentation on Poetry and Art at 3 pm, but plan to spend the whole day. The […]

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Laura Shovan

Laura Shovan is the author of the award-winning middle grade novel, The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary. Her second book, Takedown, is a Junior Library Guild and PJ Our Way selection. Look for A Place at the Table, co-written with Saadia Faruqi, in 2020. Laura is a poet-in-the-schools Maryland.

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