How Kids Poetry Basketball Works

Scroll down to read about how Kids Poetry Basketball teaches literacy through fun activities.  Use the arrows at right and left to see what an event looks like.

Literacy through basketball

Our process guides children through familiar activities, such as basketball, and challenges them to reach for the gratification of learning and deciphering new information through our arts-based sessions. They achieve shear understanding of reading, writing, linguistics, math, following directions, paying attention to details, and much more.

Participants are challenged to think critically and creatively as they move around the basketball court.  Words and literacy take on new meaning as children team up to complete a series of basketball related tasks that challenge them to expand their vocabulary and understanding of poetry. Even though there is a competitive component, the program fosters a sense of accomplishment and develops a sense of self-esteem that many at-risk children lack.  Furthermore, participants leave with a different perspective on poetry and many are inspired to begin writing their own poems.

Kids Poetry Basketball L.I.F.E. (Leadership, Innovation, Financial/Fitness, Entrepreneurship) Financial Literacy Program

Our Kids Poetry Basketball L.I.F.E. Financial Literacy Program is designed to teach youth about business terms, developing a business plan, saving, budgeting and managing their money as well as entrepreneurship.

Make it/Take it

Kids from team metaphor and team simile are expected to dribble the basketball to a letter and shoot next to a letter.  When a shot is successfully made they can pick up a letter.  The first team to pick up all of their letters wins that part of the game.  When all of the letters are earned by both teams they are taken over to the Poetry Word Board to make words. The words are then used to make a complete sentence.  Kids are given connective words such as “is”, “a”, and “I”.  Kids then read their sentences to the audience.  The crowd cheers building children’s self-esteem.

:30 Second Shooting Word Challenge

Players are given 30 seconds to shoot next to a number of words that are on the basketball court. When a player makes the basket a word is picked up.  The player that collects the most words wins the game.  Then the players use the words to make sentences on the spot.

Poetry Slam Dunk Contest

Participants must first read a poem (Ex. “Poetry means the world to me” by Langston Hughes) then are given two opportunities to take their slam dunk.

Kid dunking a basketball

Full-court Game

This activity consist of two teams (Team Metaphor and Team Simile). Each team has 10 minutes to spell out poetry words such as “Tone,” “Form,” “Haiku” and “Lyric”. The first team to spell out their poetry word with each shot made is the winning team.

kids playing basketball