Can You Hear It? Tuesday

Look at all the amazing guest bloggers

still to come this month!

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RhyPiBoMo Calendar updated

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Tomorrow, April 16th, at Midnight, Central Time

is the last day to register for RhyPiBoMo!

If you are not registered…go to the registration tab above and

join the official group now!

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RhyPiBoMo Poetry Contest Scroll

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Someone contacted me yesterday with a great question concerning the Golden Quill Poetry Contest. The question was, “Will I be posting the 3 winning poems here on my blog?” The answer, YES! So…if you have a poem that you want to submit but are considering submitting it to an editor, you may choose to send me a different poem. An editor might not look at your poem as favorably if he/she knows that your poem has already been seen by the public. Please consider this when submitting a poem for any contest!

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I was fortunate enough to not only meet today’s guest blogger at a SCBWI conference, but had her critique a manuscript for me. She liked it! I say that proudly, because if you’ve had many paid critiques done before, it can be very tough!  She is such a talented author and her books are full of lyrical, lovely language! I was very proud to contact her for this event and even more thrilled when she accepted the invitation to be a guest blogger!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Rhonda Gowler Greene!

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       Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge    Rhonda G Green 1

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Over the years, I’ve critiqued many rhyming picture book manuscripts for unpublished writers. The main problem I see? Too many beats in a line. Rhymed stories should be pleasing to the ear, but inconsistency of the rhythm in lines is jarring. This, along with forced rhymes (2nd most common problem I see), is why many editors won’t consider rhyming manuscripts anymore. After wading through so many poorly written rhyming manuscripts, they’ve finally said, “Enough.”

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…2 lines from my NO PIRATES ALLOWED! SAID LIBRARY LOU (stressed beats in caps)…

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MAYbe, just MAYbe, the CODE be in RHYME.

He LOVED Mother GOOSE. Dr. SEUSS—how subLIME!
(btw, this is anapest meter- 2 unstressed beats, 1 stressed)

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Example of too many beats—

He LOVED Mother GOOSE books. Dr. SEUSS books—how subLIME!

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Adding “books” makes the reader have to rush to get all the words in. There are too many unstressed beats. Lines in rhyming picture books should “ssssing,” not make a reader stumble or have to rush.

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Even though some editors refuse to look at rhyme, rhyming picture book manuscripts still sell to editors who are willing to look for well-written gems. How can you develop an ear for hearing “off” meter, recognize weak rhymes, and turn your story into a “gem”?

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I’m a HUGE believer that in order to write rhyme well, you need to study the best rhyming picture books. My house is FULL of them (also of children’s poetry books). Read them like a writer. Pick apart, and think on, the texts. If it helps, count stressed and unstressed beats in lines. Study— Bats at the Beach, The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School, Tadpole Rex, Mrs. Biddlebox, Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site, Cowpoke Clyde and Dirty Dawg to name a few.
I read read read rhyming picture books because that’s a genre I want to excel in. I analyze them, type out the texts, compare my writing to what’s in them. I think—Would I have used that particular rhyme or written a certain line in that same amazing way? I read my writing out loud. I have someone else read it aloud to me. Sometimes I spend weeks on one phrase! Or word! Writing in rhyme, to me, is like putting a very difficult puzzle together. Two tools I couldn’t live without— 1) my rhyming dictionary 2) my big, fat The Synonym Finder.

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I actually think it’s as important to spend time studying successful books as it is to write. If you do your “homework” and learn from the best, you’ll actually save time since instead of churning out limp lines day after day, you’ll begin to be your own critic—which brings your writing to the next level! You’ll recognize weak lines and rhymes. You’ll come up with original word choices. It doesn’t mean you won’t have to revise, but you’ll be better at it.

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When I’m writing in rhyme, I don’t really think—“iambic,” “anapest,” “trochee,” “dactyl.” I just kind of “hear” the beat. Knowing about these meters, though, is helpful. To learn about them, read chapter 13 (Rhyme Time) of Ann Whitford Paul’s Writing Picture Books (a great resource!).

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I’m honored to be a guest blogger among so many distinguished rhymers! Besides the works of the 35 guest authors here on RhyPiBoMo, I recommend books by— Linda Ashman, Karen Beaumont, Sandra Boynton, Julia Donaldson, Douglas Florian, Mary Ann Hoberman, Verla Kay, J. Patrick Lewis, Alice Schertle, Judy Sierra, and Chris Van Dusen.
What are editors looking for? A clever story idea. Fresh writing. Often, humor. Tight writing. And, too, that gem—a perfectly rhymed picture book manuscript. Maybe it’s yours!
Happy Reading! Happy Rhyming! And—Good Luck!!

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Bio:

Rhonda Gowler Greene is the author of over twenty rhyming picture books (with four forthcoming). Her books have received honors such as School Library Journal Best Book, American Booksellers “Pick of the List,” Children’s Book Council Showcase Book, Bank Street College Best Book, IRA Children’s Choice Book, Sydney Taylor Notable Book, Junior Library Guild selection, Michigan Reads One State One Children’s Book Award, and starred reviews.
A former elementary school teacher, Rhonda earned her B.A. in Elementary and Special Education and her Master’s in Educational Media. She minored in music/piano in college. Rhonda lives with her husband, Gary, in West Bloomfield, Michigan. They have four grown children. Visit her on the web at

http://www.rhondagowlergreene.com.

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Here are a few of Rhonda’s Books…

 

 Rhonda G Green 2

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Rhonda G Green 3          Rhonda G Green 4

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Rhonda G Green 5                  Rhonda G Green 6

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Rhonda G Green 7                Rhonda G Green 8

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Thank you Rhonda Gowler Greene!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Tuesday, April 15th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 17

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Do you have an ear for poetry?

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The way we assist young children to develop an ear for poetry is the same way you, as a writer can develop your poetic ear. Yes, we will start with nursery rhymes!

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Nursery Rhymes

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Nursery rhymes are essential because they help develop an ear for the sounds and syllables in words. Both rhythm and rhyme also aid with this learning process.

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Listen to these Nursery Rhymes over and over until you can recite them by memory.

http://www.mothergooseclub.com/

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Here are a few more activities to develop your poetic ear:

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Word Families

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Create word families.
In a notebook, start a list of basic one syllable words and list as many words in that word family as you can think of. Then, when your list is complete, look in a rhyming dictionary and add to your list. You will be amazed at how you begin to listen more closely to word patterns and analyze their patterns of sound.

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For example:
List of Word Families
-ab words (Cab, Dab, Fab, etc.)
-ad words (Bad, Dad, Fad, etc.)
-at words (Cat, Hat, Pat, etc)
-an
-ap
-all
-ash
-en
-et
-ed
-in
-it
-ip
-ill
-op
-ot
-og
-ug
-ut
-up
-ub

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This will give you a great beginning at listening to basic sounds of words that rhyme. Read these aloud. Have someone else read them aloud to you. If you are really challenged in this area, continue to create more lists with different beginning and ending sounds.

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Fill in the Blank

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Have someone else read children’s poems aloud and leave off the final rhyming word. I know this sounds very basic but it will help if this is an area you need help with. Remember, we are talking about creating perfect rhyme.

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Fill in the blank:
Little Boy Blue

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Little Boy Blue,
Come blow your horn,
The sheep’s in the meadow,
The cow’s in the ____;
Where is that boy
Who looks after the sheep?
Under the haystack
Fast ______.
Will you wake him?
Oh no, not I,
For if I do
He will surely ___.

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Swap Poem

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Write a swap poem. You write one line of a poem, and someone else writes the next line, matching the rhythm, and rhyming the last word. (Hint: Use words that are easy to rhyme!)

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I hope the rain will go away.

And stay away so I can play.

The sun must come and save the day.

“I want to go outside,” I say!

This was actually harder than it sounds!

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Resource from:
Nursery Rhymes: Not Just for Babies! By: Reading Rockets
http://www.readingrockets.org/article/14017

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Listen and Recite Poetry Out Loud
Very simply…Listening to poetry and rhyming songs is the best way to improve your ear for poetry!

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I am in no way suggesting that you should BUY any of these resources…I just list the Amazon link so you can see what it looks like and read more information. I’m sure most, if not all of them can be found at the library.

Here are a few suggested titles:

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Wee Sing Nursery Rhymes cds
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0843127031/ref=nosim/learningabilitie

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Dr. Seuss’s Beginning Book Set – (Cat in the Hat, One Fish Two Fish, Green Eggs and Ham, Hop on Pop, Fox in Socks)
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0375851569/ref=nosim/learningabilitie

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Poetry for Young People: Robert Frost
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1402754752/ref=nosim/learningabilitie

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Resources from: Phonics’ Failures and Fun with Phonology
http://www.gate.net/~labooks/phonemes-pre-reading-books.html
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A Child’s Introduction to Poetry: Listen While You Learn About the Magic Words That Have Moved Mountains, Won Battles, and Made Us Laugh and Cry
(CDs Included)
http://www.amazon.com/Childs-Introduction-Poetry-Mountains-Battles/dp/1579122825

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Sound and Sense
http://www.amazon.com/Sound-Sense-An-Introduction-Poetry/dp/0155826107

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Resource from:The Pioneer Woman Blog
http://thepioneerwoman.com/homeschooling/2013/02/community-question-looking-for-poetry-curriculum/

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Poetry Out Loud Website
http://www.poetryoutloud.org/poems-and-performance/listen-to-poetry

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After the Introduction, you will see The Power of Poetry (2:28) By Dana Gioia
Click and listen to his reasons why poetry is important!
I found his detailed reasons very interesting!

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4 Reasons why poetry is one of the most practical and important things to learn.

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1)Poetry is a powerful way of mastering language.
2)Poetry is a way of training and developing our emotional intelligence.
3)Poetry helps us realize that language is holistic.
4)Poetry helps to enlarge our humanity and to give us the power to express it!

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There are also lots of wonderful poems offered and read aloud by various authors and poets. Enjoy!

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More poems read “Aloud” from Kristine O’Connell George’s website
http://www.kristinegeorge.com/poetry_aloud.html

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Classic Poetry Aloud, a podcast series for some of the greatest poetry in English.
http://classicpoetryaloud.wordpress.com/

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This certainly isn’t rocket science but by practicing over and over, you will improve and develop your poetic ear. It basically comes down to taking the time to recite out loud and listen to lots and lots of poetry…pretty simple.

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The Listening Challenge: Listen to a few of the poems from the resources above.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

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