West Mifflin Area School District News Article

Clara Barton Elementary holds Poetry Picnic

Clara Barton Elementary 1st grade students worked hard all year, and then got to show off their skills during their yearly Poetry Picnic on May 23.

Over the course of the school year, 1st grade teachers Heidi McCracken and Jennifer Zitelli taught their students a number of poems, poems which they recite by memory before a picnic with their parents. Homeville Elementary held their Poetry Picnic earlier this year.

"From an academic standpoint, our poems are an integral part of our daily first grade routine & reading instruction.  At the beginning of the year children develop more print awareness and experience oral and written language concretely through the recitation of a poem," said Ms. McCracken.

"Once one poem has been mastered by the class, another poem is added.  The poems contain a lot of elements of language such as onomatopoeia, alliteration, rhyme, and cadence.  Research has also shown that memorization contributes to neuroplasticity."

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