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  • When my son was in sixth grade at an American school in Ankara, Turkey, his class did a poetry module that really fascinated me.
    The idea was to compare different forms of poetry, and to write one of each.
    The students made a book of their work. At the end of the module parents were asked in to watch each of the students perform their favourite poem.
    My son performed Jabberwocky by Lewis Caroll. I will never forget that day. The poetry module had really enthused them, and caught their imagination! No dry , boring recitles!
    The poetry unit for Grade six can be found here.
    In the introduction it says ...

    "For this unit, you will be introduced to a variety of poems and poets. You will be reading, writing, writing about, memorizing, and collecting poems. During this process I would like you to put together a poetry booklet which would include these pages, your notes, copies of poems you have found and liked or disliked, and your own creative poetry, including ideas and rough pages. In addition, I would like you to memorize a poem of your choice, recite it to an audience of your choice and explain why you chose it, how it makes you feel and why."

    I really wish a module like this could be introduced into the National Curriculum in the UK.

    Some of the forms the students learned about were Haiku; Cinquain; Villanelle; Limerick and Sonnet.


    When we lived in Australia, the family were lucky enough to have a few encounters with dolphins. We loved to visit the dolphins at Marine Magic in Coffs Harbour, New South Wales.
    I am not one for zoos or animals in captivity, but this place was different.
    They rehabilitate the dolphins, and release them into the wild. They say...

    "Rehabilitation is at the heart of everything we do at Dolphin Marine Magic. over the years we have successfully rehabilitated and released hundreds of animals, including dolphins, seals, turtles and sea birds back out into the wild for a second chance at life. .
    Since it's inception, Dolphin Marine Magic has been all about assisting with the rehabilitation and release of sick and injured marine life. Although legislation and our role working with governement departments may have changed over the years, one thing that hasn't changed and that is our determination and commitment to assisting animals in need."



    Sadly, dolphins are habitual in their nature. Often dolphins caught up in nets will return to the same area and get caught up again and again.

    I decided to combine my love of dolphins and poetry. I wrote DOLPHINOLOGY,using different forms of poetry with dolphins as the subject.

    When I had completed the book, I took it along to Dolphin Marine Magic, and they endorsed it.
    I am happy to say that DOLPHINOLOGY will be available soon on Amazon
    .





    Here are two of the poems from DOLPHINOLOGY.


    Cinquains.


    Most cinquain poems consist of a single, 22 syllable stanza, but they can be combined into longer works.
    A cinquain consists of five lines.
    The first line has two syllables, the second line has four syllables, the third line has six syllables and the fourth line has eight syllables, the final line has two syllables... 2-4-6- 8-2.


    Dolphins
    Are sea mammals
    They like to entertain
    We watch them and feel peace and joy.
    Soul mates




    Tanka.


    Tankas have five lines that do not have to rhyme.
    They have a syllable pattern of 5-7-5-7-7. They are personal in content and feeling.
    A tanka usually breaks into two units, the first three lines forming one unit and the last two lines forming another.
    The middle line can be a "pivot;" for example, the middle line can be read with either the first two or last two lines.


    The dolphin kissed me
    Her rostrum was smooth and hard
    She flipped and was gone
    I felt euphoric but calm
    Entranced by a sea angel



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