Making the journals is tedious, but in the end it is so worth it! I print a cover with each child's name on cute printer paper. I glue this to 9x12 construction paper. I laminate this front cover and a blank paper for the back cover. I cut cardstock into strips that are 3" by 8.5". I hole-punch one side with my binding machine. These serve as the "pages" for our book. I bind it all together with a binding comb. The pages will be glued to these strips. If the cover were made with a standard 8.5x11 paper, the inside pages would stick out. That is why I use 9x12 covers.
Because I want these to last all year, I run a line of E6000 glue along the spine. You DO know about E600, right? BEST glue EVER!!! Each week, a new poem is glued to these little strips. This makes a really nice poetry book for the kids to keep at the end of the year. It is like a memory book/portfolio.
Poems are WONDERFUL for building fluency, working on rhymes and building confidence in beginning readers. Making these journals takes me about 8 hours from start to finish, but they are a wonderful resource all year long.
Do you use poetry journals in your classroom? If you have any ideas, questions, or suggestions, please share them in the comments. Thanks for reading!