Leah Zabari 

 Who remembers the Name Game? You know, the one that goes, “Leah, Leah, bo bia, banana fanna fo fia, me my mo mia, Leah!” I think I first fell in love with the Name Game while watching Sesame Street. After learning that song, I came up with all sorts of rhyming words some that did rhyme and others, well, okay didn’t rhyme but were still funny in my kid mind. After getting the hang of silly rhyming songs, I moved on to nursery rhymes and from there, began to pick out words in books that rhymed. After a while, poems were introduced to me and that’s when I fell in love with poets like Robert Frost and Shel Silverstein. Poems are silly and fun, thought-provoking and powerful, simple and complex. The thing I like about poems is that they are diverse – there are poems for every age!  Readmore

I am saddened to say that it has been a long time since I have seen or heard poems used in the preschool classroom. I would love to hear the Name Game being sung again, see children drawing pictures relating to a poem they heard their teacher read, and making up rhyming words while playing in centers around the classroom. If you are like me and love poetry and singing silly rhyming words, the internet is filled with poetry resources. Below is a recent poem that I ran into that has the power to make children laugh, think, and imagine a world where they can be in charge! The poem by Judith Viorst, is from her book, If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries and Sad Underwear and Other Complications. 

If I were in charge of the world
I’d cancel oatmeal,
Monday mornings,
Allergy shots, and also Sara Steinberg. 

If I were in charge of the world
There’d be brighter nights lights,
Healthier hamsters, and
Basketball baskets forty-eight inches lower. 

If I were in charge of the world
You wouldn’t have lonely.
You wouldn’t have clean.
You wouldn’t have bedtimes.
Or “Don’t punch your sister.”
You wouldn’t even have sisters. 

If I were in charge of the world
A chocolate sundae with whipped cream and nuts would be a vegetable
All 007 movies would be G,
And a person who sometimes forgot to brush,
And sometimes forgot to flush,
Would still be allowed to be
In charge of the world. 

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