Identifying different types of poetry is an important skill for third graders to grasp. Help your child create a lovely limerick in celebration of Valentine's Day! He'll be introduced to the specific rhythm, rhyme and structure of these catchy, upbeat poems. Your child will delight in creating and reciting these nonsensical poems rooted in 18th century Ireland!
What You Do:
- Explain what a limerick poem is: a funny or silly poem containing five lines. The first line, the second line and the fifth line rhyme with each other. The third and fourth line rhyme with each other. They also have a specific rhythmic beat. The first line, second line and fifth line have a beat of three (usually 7-10 syllables). The third and fourth lines have a beat of two (usually 5-7 syllables).
- While you are reading the following example, encourage your child to clap to it with you. There should be three claps for the first, second and fifth line, and two claps for the third and fourth line:
There was an old man from Peru, (3 claps)
who dreamed he was eating his shoe. (3 claps)
He awoke in the night, (2 claps)
with a terrible fright, (2 claps)and found out that it was quite true. (3 claps)
Here is another limerick to try:
There once was a girl named Jill, (3 claps)
who took a really big spill. (3 claps)
She was covered with dirt, (2 claps)
and oh how it hurt. (2 claps)
Just from a fall down a hill. (3 claps)
- Have your child continue practicing the limericks until he grasps the rhythmic beat.
- Ask your child to make a list of words that have to do with Valentine's Day. For example: hearts, flowers, cupid, candy, red, pink, etc.
- Invite your child to start with a name that is one syllable and easy to rhyme with other words, such as "Ted." He can then make a list of rhyming words, such as bed, said, red, led, fed, etc.
- Have your child use the one-syllable name at the end of the first line. For example, "There once was a boy named Ted." Use the rhyming words your child listed in the second and fifth line to incorporate Valentine's Day into the poem. For example:
There was a boy named Ted,
whose favorite color was red.
On Valentine's Day,
no hearts came his way.
So he cried all night in bed.
Here's another example:
There once was a boy named Stan,
who had a very good plan.
He gave her candy,
his idea was dandy.
As he won a smile from Ann.
- Have your child write his limerick neatly onto lined paper.
- Finally, ask him to cut it out and paste it onto construction paper. Decorate the paper with markers, stickers, glitter, etc.