Cupcakes and bluegrass are an awesome combination — but not as awesome as children and poetry! As a writer and mother with experience teaching young people from nursery school to university age, I firmly believe that frequent doses of poetry are beneficial for every area of a child’s development.

Of course, one can easily guess that poetry is excellent for language and vocabulary development, but the benefits of poetry for children go well beyond. The musicality of poetry makes reading a very enjoyable experience for little ones. Over the past week, I have been reading my daughter a 60-something page Jack Prelutsky book and every night she sits attentively through the whole thing. And she is only 6 months old! She slaps the book excitedly and tries to turn the pages herself. By the end of it she is almost always cooing like crazy and I like to believe she just wants to participate in all the fun sound-making. What a great beginning to her relationship with books!

But why is a love of reading so important, anyway? Reading is good, reading is good, reading is good. It’s jammed down our throats from a young age but how many of us can really articulate what is so good about it? From time to time I will inevitably try to do that in this blog, but for now I’ll just say that books help us think about life, which, as we all know, can be so hard sometimes! They give us opportunities to deeply investigate the lives and minds of others so we might understand differences among people and, more importantly, identify the places where we overlap. This overlap is what it is to be human and it is the stuff that poetry is made of.

Beyond all this, poetry allows children to express themselves and to stretch their imaginations. The world is bigger and its possibilites more vast for children who develop a love of words, a respect for ideas and a fondness for books.

This blog is dedicated to children and the adults who want the best for them. It will be filled with poetry for children, information about poets and poetry for children, activities and contests to foster a love of words in children, and anything else that might be related.

I must admit, I’m super excited about this project. I hope you and your children enjoy reading and participating in this blog as much as I think I’m going to enjoy writing it. I hope you gobble up poems like cupcakes and dance to their verses like you’re at a big ol’ bluegrass festival!



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