Jessica Alba, others, mark National Poetry Month

By LYNN ELBER Updated at 2012-04-11 09:23:06 +0000


LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jessica Alba is adding her voice to National Poetry Month, helping to lure children into the art form.

Alba is among more than a dozen celebrity parents whose poetry readings are airing on the Disney and Disney Junior channels this month.

Readings by Viola Davis, Caroline Kennedy, Liev Schreiber and Katie Holmes also are featured in "A Poem Is ....", a short-form series that sets verse to classic Disney animation.

Langston Hughes, Mary Ann Hoberman and May Swenson are among the writers whose work is included.

Alba, who has two daughters, chose a Mexican folk song, "De Colores" ("Of Colors"), which reflects her Hispanic heritage. Her segment will air at 11:55 a.m. EDT Monday and at 6:55 a.m. EDT April 29, on the Disney Channel, and will play at various times on Disney Junior.

Joining poetry and imagery is "just a really great way to introduce kids to poetry," including those too young to read, Alba said.

It's also reflects the "genius of 'edu-tainment,' a new word I've been introduced to since I've become a mother," Alba said. Her definition: "tricking your kids into learning."

The actress ("Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer," ''Dark Angel") says her own poetry dabblings have taken a sharp turn.

"I have a lot of teen angst on paper," Alba said. "Now I just kind of make up songs for my girls. I have little poems that I sing to them before they go to sleep, to the tune of 'Twinkle Twinkle (Little Star).'"