For the Good of the Earth and Sun is for teachers at all levels, especially for those teachers who feel anxious about introducing poetry to students.
Georgia Heard offers a method of teaching poetry that respects the intelligence of students and teachers and that can build upon their basic originality. She explores poetry from the inside as it is: a powerful and necessary way of looking at the world, and one of mankind's most durable inventions.
Her book provides detailed, organized information so that teachers themselves can begin to enjoy and feel knowledgeable about poetry, and, from there, pass those feelings on to their students. The author's text is supplemented by examples of students' work in original and draft form.
A comprehensive overview of the art of teaching students how to enjoy and write poetry. Heard's calm and gentle approach is verified in the examples presented. Her method should take away some of the fears felt by teachers who lack confidence in their abilities to lead students in poetry-writing activities. The emphasis on reading poetry and enjoying it before attempting to write it is a basic tenet of this program. Also of importance is the environmental setting for writing poetry, the handling of plagiarism, and the publication of the poems, even if just in a classroom setting. The student poetry examples are excellent, especially when shown in the actual handwriting of the student. The bibliographies have brief annotations, and, while not extensive, are valuable.-- A.R. Huggins and J. Thomson, Memphis State Univ.