poetry of teaching

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This isn’t how to teach poetry or poems about your teachers. It’s poetry about being a teacher or teaching. Poems about that profession that gives way more than it ever receives. Poems written by teachers, many of whom actually can DO as well as teach. Poetry that shows what those teachers can do and what teaching is like for them.


The Heart of a Teacher: On Staff Meetings, Lice, Field Trips, and What Really Matters

A teacher writes 64 poems about being a school teacher, based on the author’s own teaching experiences along with those who probably stuck it out much longer..

At times funny, other times poignant, Salas' poems offer a perfect way to end the school year, or to begin a new one!

That always sucked: the moment you realized that you needed to start a new school year once again, especially if you’re an author at heart.


Teachers in Autumn

Supposedly written by three life long teachers (not hyphenated). Not teachers of grammar, I suppose, but still teachers who apparently offer “an imaginative examination of three lives in the 20th and 21st centuries.” Sounds exciting, but why all three of them? Do they life long teach in the same school? A school without hyphens, perhaps. After reading the sample, it’s not about teaching all that much, so whatevs.


Leaves of Paper: Poems and Stories About Teaching

This is a legitimate book of poetry and other writing about teaching. 24 poems and vignettes. (That’s two dozen for all the gym teachers out there.) Written by an ELA teacher for the consideration of other teachers. It’s not 64 like The Heart of a Teacher book, but there also aren’t any weak-ass Haikus in it as fillers.


Turning Halls of Yearning Into Halls of Learning: Inspirational poetic commentary about teaching and learning in an urban school setting

Another book that has poetry about teaching, mostly starting with the line, “Do we, can we, love this child?” so you can be sure it’s not going to be about classroom perfection. If you teach in an urban setting, this could be inspirational or depressing. Probably both.


Honestly, there’s not a whole lot more that’s easy to find on Amazon. Most books are about teaching poetry or maybe poems written for elementary school students. It probably says a lot about where we are as a society in regards to reading and writing poetry. It also may say something about how difficult it is to find what you’re looking for when teacher guides are the books that hog search results.

I’m hoping this article and others like it can help direct people looking for that perfect gift for the teachers in their lives. Honestly, teachers want to pick out their own teaching guides or electronic devices. But books are always a good gift. And regift. So go ahead.