We spend about five minutes a few times a week reading and discussing our poem of the month. The poem of the month comes from a book written by Maurice Sendak, also the author of Where the Wild Things Are. In Chicken Soup with Rice, Sendak describes the monthly adventures of a little boy. This is the February poem.
Throughout the year, we explicitly teach the following literacy skills:
- alliteration (the ability to notice words that begin in the same way)
- smaller and smaller units of sound (the ability to hear sounds in different parts of the word)
- letter sound knowledge
Chicken Soup with Rice allows us to practice these skills every day. The first week of the month we spend getting to know the ideas in the poem. We discuss what students notice in the picture, any new vocabulary, and practice reciting the poem. Once students are familiar with the content, we can notice the rhymes. This month, we will focus our practice on hearing the rhyming words. The skill of rhyme trains the child´s ear to notice a specific sound in the word. We will then discuss the letter sounds that students hear in the poem.
You can also work with your child to notice sounds in words! Music is great to notice and hear rhyming words. Or, use the names of people in your family to talk about the sounds you hear. For example, my brother´s name is Peter. Peter has the same first sound as Pablo! Have fun and please let us know if you have questions!