In 2001, the Advisory determined that we really wanted an anthology of delightful poems suitable for year 1 students (not as a replacement for the irreplaceable Milne or Robert Louis Stevenson, but an addition). In 2001, the oldest Advisory 'child' was 18, and there were several teen-agers besides her, all reared on CM's methods, including a diet rich in poetry. In my (Wendi's) family, we owned over 300 volumes of poetry. I asked each of my children who could write to go make me a list of favourite poems from their younger childhood days. Those who couldn't write yet could just tell me. Their lists were similar, in some cases, identical.
Not in length, of course. The 18 year old included far more on her list than the 3 year old was able to tell me about, but both of them mentioned Wynken, Blynken, and Nod and When Young Melissa Sweeps the Floor, for example. I made my own list as well, and other Advisory moms and children created theirs in their own way. My children wanted to know what Auntie Lynn's and Auntie Donna-Jean's children had chosen. There were delighted squeals of recognition and agreement whenever I passed on a poem Auntie Anne's family thought should be included. Sometimes we had a bit of tussle at our house when one of the children wasn't finished making her list, but a sibling had gotten distracted while hunting up a title and taken the very book of poetry her sibling wanted over to a cozy spot to curl up with it and just read poetry for fun. Creating our poetry anthology remains one of my fondest of many fond memories over our years of work on AO. What we have here is the result "AmblesideOnline Advisory's poetry selections for year one students," but it is more than that. This is a lovingly curated anthology of the childhood favourites of the Advisory, and Advisory children. These are not just poems, they are friends who touched our hearts, made us smile, helped us see the world in a new way, helped us give words to what we were already seeing. They are part of our family's traditions (my oldest grandson quoted The Little Turtle for me when he was 3. It had been his mother's favourite at about the same age), and part of our family language as well- snatches of poems, a line here, a line there, come out when we need that 'word fitly spoken.' We fondly, dearly, hope and believe your own children will find many friends here to love and hold dear, to reminisce over when they are grown. From our family's hearts to yours, may you have as much joy in sharing these poems with your children as we have in sharing them with you. Other features: Active TOC! Foreword with information on using the selections. Each poem given its own page.