A Division of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Heinemann

Playing with Poems

Word Study Lessons for Shared Reading, K-2

Zoe Ryder White

ISBN 978-0-325-01735-8 / 0-325-01735-2 / 2008 / 208pp / Paperback
Imprint: Heinemann
Availability: In Stock
Grade Level: K - 2nd
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The ideas presented here are incredibly practical, easily implemented, and highly effective.

—Kathy Collins

Author of Growing Readers


Why aren’t there more good poems for use in shared reading? Poems that address key curricular goals while making the most of young children’s love of rhythm and rhyme? Now, thanks to Zoë Ryder White, there are. She’s stocked Playing with Poems with lessons built around 44 brand-new, original poems written precisely for word study.


Only a teacher could write both poems filled with word study concepts and lessons that help children internalize them. Through a shared reading framework, White presents word study lessons that target literacy foundations such as:

  • concepts about print
  • rhythm and rhyme
  • sight words
  • spelling patterns
  • vocabulary.


Playing with Poems is a lot of fun for children, and it’s packed with helpful features for you. Its lessons are carefully sequenced to lead students from beginning concepts to more complex ones. Special navigation charts help you match lessons to areas of need. And Playing with Poems even provides great ideas for writing your own shared reading poems and for collecting them from outside sources.


Finally, you’ll never need to worry again about tracking down poems that work for word study. Just pick up Playing with Poems. You’ll get years’ worth of poems perfect for shared reading. And best of all you’ll have powerful lessons designed to make the most of them. Only from the pen of a teacher.

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As educators, we are always rummaging for just the right specimen, sample, manipulative, or visual to make our teaching whole. In Playing with Poems, Zoe makes the search for teaching treasures just a bit easier. No need to make space on your shelf for this book. You will use it every day.
—Gretchen Owocki, Author of Literacy Through Play

Word study does not always follow the same path in all classrooms, and Zoe makes it easy for teachers to find their own paths through her fantastic and fun poems. I can trust Zoe’s lessons to meet the needs of a wide range of learners.
—Stephanie Parsons, Author of First Grade Writers and Second Grade Writers

What a joy to read a book about word study that considers both the playful, curious nature of young children as well as their needs as readers, writers, and learners! The ideas presented here are incredibly practical, easily implemented, and highly effective.
—Kathy Collins, Author of Growing Readers

Email planningservices@heinemann.com if you would like to contact Zoe Ryder White directly about professional development support.

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