I am not the world's biggest poetry fan. I enjoy some of it - Poe, Frost, Shakespeare - but for the most part, I don't care for it.
My kids, however, are entirely different kettles of fish. They happily check out entire books of poetry from the library and dash downstairs at random times to read me their favorite passages. M2 wants to memorize "The Road Not Taken" for fall, and M1 is debating which Poe poem he wants to memorize in time for Halloween. This is voluntary, I should add - while we have a classical bent to our education plan, I don't insist on a lot of rote memorization of anything that doesn't require it. Periodic table? Optional. 6+3? Mandatory. I figure they'll have resources at their fingertips from now till the end of time, and I'd rather them learn to use those effectively rather than doing a lot of memorization... which isn't to say we don't memorize things. We do. Just not a lot.
As part of their writing curriculum, we've been doing a lot of free writing. I started out just letting them do a true free write - anything that popped into their head was fair game to put on paper. Spelling, punctuation, grammar, and even sentence structure were ignored for the sake of letting the kids write. This has worked very well, and now I'm starting to throw a few guidelines at them to see how well they integrate what they know into what they've been writing.
Today, I gave them a choice. They could either write a poem or they could write about their favorite activity. To my surprise (especially with M1), they both chose to write a poem.
The results surprised me even further. Without further ado, and also without editing, their poems:
Cats are sometimes naughty,
Always being haughty.
Tipping over dishes,
Slipping through niches.
quiet is gold, all sold. all the food has mold. The slaves were even sold nothing was left but cold the food had a mood winter was becoming very bitter and cold. all was gone exept for the lawn wich spoke to each other. one by one the lawn died. and it all melted away forever.