Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Poetry Teatime

Today we attended our first Bravewriter-style Poetry Teatime (read about the format here), which was very enjoyable despite my hair catching fire and the subsequent lingering smell of burnt hair (which really is as odoriferous as is described).

Our family was experiencing good fruits from this event even days before we attended! The children began showing such excitement and interest in poetry again. Before school had to take a backseat toward the end of my latest pregnancy, we had been memorizing poetry daily from the IEW poetry book. Going down to 'bare bones' school meant poetry had to be dropped.

A truly beautiful Advent table setting

When we cracked open our IEW poetry book, as well as other wonderful books, the children began chatting excitedly with each other, declaring that they wanted to share this or that delightful poem with their friends. For days, I overheard the children rehearsing animated recitations of poems, including when we'd go on bike-walks through the neighborhood. What a joy to see children finding poetry so delightful that they share it amongst themselves.

John reading a poem

I worried my nine-year-old boy would be bored by this idea, and I was frankly willing to leave him home with Daddy, as he'd be the only older boy at this event, the other four boys being toddlers and a baby, but John showed much interest. He discovered my hardcover Oxford Book of Children's Poetry, from my own childhood, and began carrying it around the house because it was so interesting. Some days I am in despair over homeschooling, but it is days like these when I'm feeling very blessed by our opportunities.

John listening to his friend read poetry

A poetry teatime helps teach children truth, beauty, and goodness. They learn the artistry of hosting, what a beautiful table looks like, how to behave well at a table, to try new foods, to decline foods politely, how to dress nicely, how to read or recite in an animated way, the manner in which we pay attention (or feign interest!) in another person performing, how to clean up, and the way we thank our hostess for a good time.

We hope to have poetry teatime more often, whether with friends or just within our own family.

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