Poetry Challenge Week Four: Blackout Poems

 It’s week FOUR of the Weekly Poetry Challenge, and this week is all about blackout poems! A blackout poem is created by taking a block of text—like from a newspaper, magazine, or book—and “blacking out” everything except the words you want. Here’s a blackout poem I wrote: Created using the book MAKE BLACKOUT POETRY by John Carroll Read some black out poems! Here are some blackout poems by author Austin Kleon . Examples of student-created blackout poems . Check out this Pinterest board for more examples. Write a black out poem! When creating your blackout poem, you may to start with a pencil and circle or block around the words you want to keep for your poem. Then, once you’re happy with your poem use a sharpie to black out everything you don’t want. Blackout poetry is a great visual, but you can also type out your poem when you’re done to make it easier to read. Need a little help? Here’s a video by Austin Kleon on how he makes blackout poetry. If you or your kids write blackout poem

Summer Challenge Week 8: Night Time!

It's week eight of the Read, Discuss, Do! Summer Challenge, and this week it's all about night! Summertime is a great time of year to spend a little time out at night. There is so much to see and hear that doesn't happen during the day. Stars shining, owls hooting, bugs buzzing around in the glow of street lamps. We hope that this week's challenge will encourage you to do some night time reading and have some night time fun, even if you stay inside to do it!

Ideas for books to read:

  • If You Were Night by Muon Thi Van, illustrated by Kelly Pousette. This beautiful book, illustrated with cut paper dioramas, is a lyrical exploration of the natural world at night. 
  • The House in the Night by Susan Marie Swanson, illustrated by Beth Krommes. A quiet, lyrical book about sources of light inside and out.
  • While You Are Sleeping by Mariana Ruiz Johnson. This is a wordless book that takes the reader on a night time adventure while a child in the story dreams.

Ideas for things to discuss:

  • What are some things you can only see at night?
  • Are you afraid of night or of the dark? If so, why?
  • What is something you like to do at night?
  • How many nocturnal animals can you name?

Ideas for things to do: 

  • Go for a walk at night and look for things that are featured in the book you read.
  • Sit outside and star gaze. Try looking for constellations and planets. Use a telescope if you have one!
  • Visit your zoo's nocturnal exhibit if possible. Otherwise, watch a documentary about nocturnal animals.
  • Create some night-inspired art. Try a style based on one of the books, such as a cut paper diorama (If You Were Night) or scratchboard art (The House in the Night). 
  • Play a game of hide-and-seek in the dark.
Do you have a favorite book about night time? Let us know in the comments or on social media with the hashtag #RDDSummerChallenge.