Tuesday, October 21, 2008

KSRA Poetry Around

As Michael and I were driving to Keystone State Reading Association this week, (well, let me amend that, as Michael was driving and I was taking in the colorful hills and valleys along the PA turnpike) anyway, while we were traversing the oh so long state of PA, I tried to count how many times I have attended this meeting since 1991.  It was definitely one of the first teacher conferences I ever attended.  Can't remember.  Lots of times.  What I have no trouble remembering are the fine friends and poets I have had the honor to hang out with during the meetings and at the evening poetry around

One of the best is Will Mowery who this year read lively, insightful tidbits from his writer's notebook.  Michael also pitched in with a few poems.  Will says that the important thing about poetry for kids is that a good poem always requires inference.

The event has been better attended in past years, but this time most of the teachers were commuting, the creaking economy has his both teachers and school professional development budgets hard.  Attendance at teacher conferences is down in general.   Hopefully this will change next year when KSRA returns to its old home in Hershey.  Here's hopin'.

Meantime, I appreciate the opportunity to connect with old friends, meet new ones, and share good words.  The importance of teacher conferences can't be overstated -- it's a place to learn new ideas and feed the spirit, both benefits of equal import.  

Oh, and on a different note, congratulations to Mary Ann Hoberman who has just replace Jack Prelutsky as the children's poet laureate.  Who even knew there was such a thing?  News to me.  But still -- cool beans.  She's a fine choice.  

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