Thursday, August 9, 2018

Inspiration Behind the Poem

Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong's new publication, Great Morning! Poems for School Leaders to Read Aloud  has been published. 

As a blogger on the Great Morning Blog Tour, I would like to thank Sylvia and Janet for their amazing contributions to the field of contemporary poetry. Their zest for writing and gathering poetry is exemplified by the variety of Poetry Friday anthologies they have created. I am excited to promote their new creative endeavor, Great Morning!  This book is filled with poetry in various formats about the different aspects of school life and specifically for schools' morning announcements. This is an ingenious way to spread the power of poetry throughout a building and a must-read for school administrators and literacy leaders. 

I am honored to be one of the published poets in Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong's new publication, "Great Morning! Poems for School Leaders to Read Aloud".

Being a member of the Poetry Friday family has enriched my artistic life and brought me full circle to one of the paths I chose as a young graduate student. Today, I present the inspiration behind the poem I wrote for Great Morning!

 Topic 22: Art
"Art Class"

While pondering the topic art class for a K-1 audience, I called upon my connected educator friend, Matt Grundler, who is an elementary art teacher in Plano, Texas. In addition to speaking with Matt for an hour, he sent me photos of his art studio and his students at work so I could gather my thoughts before drafting my poem for Great Morning! Below is a synopsis of the information I collected for my poetry writing task. 

Making ART with Little Hands
The Inspiration Behind the Poem, "Art Class"

Welcome to Mr. Grundler's Art Studio!
Little hands make art weekly.
Greeted at the door with enthusiasm, 
curious students find their place on the rug.
 Their adventure begins with morning meeting.

Then, off they go, 
ready to start creative play.
Sometimes, young artists collaborate to create.

Other times, they work solo.

There's always a new delight
waiting in the art room.
Green screen time 
fascinates creative minds
and stimulates new ideas.

iPads engage little ones.

Collage making connects art and literacy.

Each day, young artists
explore their creative side
with their innovative guide.

Meet Matt Grundler,  Art Educator

Matt Grundler breaks the stereotypic art teacher mold. For one, he is a male in a predominantly female world of art teachers. He is a minimalist with a bright, open-space design for his art room at Brinker Elementary School in the Plano Independent School District, Texas that has now transformed itself into an art studio for elementary children. 

Matt, being an empathetic and compassionate teacher, models for his young artists and guides them on their journeys to find the artist within. You can find this enthusiastic connected educator on Twitter as @ArtGuy76, the co-moderator of K-12ArtChat

"Art is not what you see, but what you make others see." - Degas

My Special Thanks to:

Matt Grundler for making me see the gifts you encourage your students to bring to life.
Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong for inviting me to find my inner voice for this particular project.
Pomelo Books for creating such a wealth of poetry resources for the educational world.


The Poetry Friday Roundup is hosted by my writing colleague, Molly Hogan.
Please join me as I visit Molly's blog, Nix the Comfort Zone,  to read what she has in store for us.

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