This is a fun time of year to be in second grade. The students have many interesting science units going on in their classrooms - ramps, plants, and butterflies. A few years ago, the classroom teachers and I collaborated on a poetry project related to the ramps unit. This year, I decided to focus on the butterflies and give the students a chance to share what they had observed and learned over the last few weeks.
We began the unit by reading Small Wonders about Jean-Henri Fabre, a French scientist who observed animal behaviors and changed the study of insects with his approach. The students then learned about different styles of forms of poetry. One of the books we used was Wet Cement : A Mix of Concrete Poems by Bob Raczka:
We then explored poems about animals for inspiration, such as The Book of Nature Poetry.
This week, the students had the opportunity to share and show what they had seen or learned about butterflies. Before sending them off to create, I shared some butterfly poems that I created, followed by a group brainstorm session about words, concepts, and terms related to the butterfly unit. Having watched the students create their poems, I think that the ramps unit provided more material for the students and will likely return to that subject next year. Still, there is some great thinking going on here. This is a two week project, so these are still works in progress, but I have learned quite a bit already!