Hip Hop Speaks to Children
A lot of youngsters, particularly those who have not been
exposed to truly inspiring poetry, groan when this genre is assigned
in school. It's too boring, childish, stilted...nothing to do with
them. This can be very frustrating for teachers. How can they kindle
a passion for poems in a very resistant class?
Hip Hop Speaks to Children: a celebration of poetry with a beat,
edited by Nikki Giovanni, would be a good place for a poetry loving
teacher or parent to start. This book and CD combo enables children
to absorb its message through words, pictures, and sound. Poetry and
music are intimately intertwined and have everything to do with the
life of the people.
Before today's kids (and many of their parents) were born
Gwendolyn Brooks commented on pool players:
We real cool. We
Left school. We
Lurk late. We
Strike straight. We
Sing sin. We
Thin gin. We
Jazz June. We
Queen Latifah speaks up for women.
"Ladies first, there's no time to rehearse
I'm divine and my mind expands through the universe
I'm a female rapper with a message to send
The Queen Latifah is a perfect specimen"
Gary Soto describes the joy of making his own musical instruments.
Nikki Giovanni paints a poignant picture of little girls strive toward
"They look so grown up
With that high heel wiggle.
Their pearls are flapping.
Their dresses flow.
They are so sorry
They have no place to go.
Mother refuses to drive them
Looking like that."
You can go through the book front to back or skip around. There
are a wealth of educational activities that will help kids make the
verses meaningful and personal. This is a very good book for a
classroom or family library, especially next April when poetry month
comes around again.
On a personal note, I lost.
A great big shout out goes out to the people who voted for me.
Sent from my iPod