Poem in Your Pocket Day

Yesterday was Poem in Your Pocket Day. Started ten years ago in the mayor’s office of New York City, this fun event has people talking about, reading, and listening to poetry for a wonderful day in April.

I read about it on Twitter on the very morning it had already started, so I didn’t have much time to prepare. I saw that there was a hashtag, #pocketpoem, to follow and share the poem you had in your pocket.

On my way to bus duty I grabbed photocopies of some short kid-friendly poems. The K-3 students gladly found a poem they liked while they waited for their bus. They put them right into their pockets and took them out to read to each other.

Later, with my 7th and 8th graders, I had them find a poem they loved and put it in their pocket too. Some chose ones they had written themselves, and others found theirs in a book and wrote them out by hand or got a photocopy. They read them several times to classmates. It was such a beautiful spring day, so one class went outside and formed two concentric circles. Facing each other, they read to the person across from them, and then rotated after each reading and listening.

The poem in my pocket was written over twenty years ago by Roald Dahl in a letter to my second grade students.

Poem in Your Pocket Day was a fun poetry activity, and I will definitely try to notice earlier next year so I can do more with it.

8 thoughts on “Poem in Your Pocket Day

  1. Hi Denise,

    I must have missed this on twitter, because this is the first I have heard of “poem in your pocket day”! I love it! What a fantastic way for students to share with each other.
    Love it!

    1. Gallit,
      I was a fun way to celebrate poetry. Even the big kids were glad to pull out their poems and read them to others! Lots of fun and very easy! Next year!


  2. Love it! I am going to use this during our poetry anthology celebration day!!

  3. We have been writing drafts on our blogs of 4 different types of poems. Each of the posts the students were encouraged to use images, audio, or video to support their posts. After each poem we practiced giving descriptive peer feedback on each others blogs using each strand (meaning, style, form, & conventions) of the Performance Standards for writing poems. Each poem the students focussed on a different strand. The students right now are using the feedback to rewrite their poems or write a new one using the feedback they received. These poems plus one poem of their choosing will make up their Anthology. After they have all been published the students would share one of their poems orally with the class with their anthology blog post showing on the projection screen. I am going to replace this last part with the poem in your pocket strategy. I an excited by it! đŸ™‚

  4. The real focus of this unit was to the peer assessment part. The students practiced using the performance standard while I gave them instant feedback on their comments in class. I projected their comments as they submitted them for moderation. Each student was then able to see positive examples using the rubric & examples that needed to touch up a bit.

  5. I just realized I gave you a bit more info than you asked about. :). Anyways hope it was helpful to anyone who reads your blog post.

  6. Wow! That all sounds very exciting. I’ll be excited to read your students’ poetry blog posts. Can you leave the link?


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