Poetry Lessons, Resources, & More
- Shapes and Poetry Students in grades K-2 read the poem "Shapes" from A Light in the Attic, by Shel Silverstein, and use geometric figures to create their own illustration for the poem.
- Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain Teaching PlanStudents in grades K-2 record local weather and repetition and rhythm in the story.
- A Bear of a Poem: Composing and Performing Found Poetry Students in grades K-2 select words and phrases to create a collective class poem that they then turn into a performance.
- Compiling Poetry Collections and a Working Definition of Poetry Students ingrades 3-5 explore forms and craft elements of poetry as they read poems about everyday topics and themes. They collect favorite poems to compile their own anthologies.
- Getting Started With Poetry Students in grade 4 listen to and read a variety of poems, discuss poetic language and form, and write their own modeled on those they have heard and read.
- Tips for Teaching Poetry For K-12 teachers, here are a number of ways to bring poetry into the classroom.
- Bookmark Poetry
- Read a book of poetry: Don’t know where to begin? Start browsing on poets.org with their Find a Poet and Find a Poem sections and see what strikes you. You can also visit the Poems for Every Occasion section for mini-anthologies of poems grouped thematically or listen to recordings of poets people reading their own work in the Poetry Audio Archive. You can even travel in time and read the oldest written poem is the Epic of Gilgamesh from Babylon which is about 4,000 years old or the oldest poem in English, Beowulf, written in the 8th century AD.
- Put a poem on the pavement: Go a step beyond hopscotch squares and write a poem in chalk on your sidewalk. Use brightly colored chalk to attract attention to your work, and add drawings or artistic flourishes to create some extra fun.
- Recite a poem to family and friends: Often times, children will act out a play for others to enjoy, so why not do the same with a poem? Dress up as your favorite author and read a collection of their pieces for all to enjoy!
- Put poetry in an unexpected place: Put a poem on a plate as a nice surprise when you finish your meal. Leave a note on the keyboard and start your day off with some words of wisdom. Wherever you choose, know there’s never a bad place for poetry.
- Watch a poetry movie: Many movies are based on poetry or feature poetry, and it’s a great time to pay homage with some screen time. Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax (and all other Dr. Seuss movies), and Disney’s Mulan are both based on a poem. There are also plenty of documentaries for you to watch on famous poets.
- Visit a poetry landmark: No matter where in the country you live, a poetry landmark is nearby. Whether it’s the birthplace of a contemporary poet, the site of a single poem’s inspiration, or the plot of a poet’s grave, visiting physical spaces associated with a favorite writer is a memorable way to honor their life and work.
- Write a letter to a poet: Many poets will post their contact information on their websites or blogs, or you can get in touch with the poet’s publisher. Even if the poet in question is unavailable or deceased, the gesture of writing a letter can bring you closer to his or her work.
- Favorite Poem Project - The Favorite Poem Project is dedicated to celebrating, documenting and encouraging poetry’s role in Americans’ lives.
- ReadWriteThink- Poetry
- ReadingRockets- Poetry
National Poetry Month
- Poetry Read-a-Thon Students in grades K-12 choose poems to read and then write prose “responses” to the poems they read. Students keep a reading log and respond to elements of the poem in 75-100 words.
- Poem in Your PocketTeachers and students in grades K-12 can celebrate National Poem In Your Pocket Day . Select a poem you love during National Poetry Month then carry it with you to share with co-workers, family, and friends.
- Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month With The New York Times A selection of activities for K-12 students.
- Poets.org 30 ways to Celebrate
- National Poetry Month trivia - What is poetry?: Learn more about poetry with fun facts. Did you know that poetry is literature that works through sounds and images? It was originally recited to an audience, and its rhythms and sounds affect the meaning of the words through poetic language which is concentrated and expresses feelings and ideas.
- Celebrate Poem in Your Pocket Day: The idea is simple: select a poem you love then carry it with you sharing it with family and friends. You can also share your poem selection on Twitter by using the #pocketpoem.
- Write your own poem: Enter your masterpiece in the K12 Splish-Splash Poetry Contest for a chance to win a prize!
- National Poetry Month inspiration
Poetry Lessons for Kids
Creative Writing Now
Where Do Poets Get Their Inspiration?
- Poem in Your Pocket Day- -Every April, on Poem in Your Pocket Day, people celebrate by selecting a poem, carrying it with them, and sharing it with others throughout the day at schools, bookstores, libraries, parks, workplaces, and on Twitter using the hashtag #pocketpoem. Lesson Idea
- Poem in Your Pocket Day was originally initiated in 2002 by the Office of the Mayor, in partnership with the New York City Departments of Cultural Affairs and Education, as part of the city’s National Poetry Month celebration. In 2008, the Academy of American Poets made the initiative national, encouraging individuals across the country to join in and channel their inner bard. Video
Types of Poetry
Poems for Multiple Voices An annotated bibliography of poetry for 2, 3, and 4 voices.
National Poetry Month (Reading Rockets)
Learn more about well-loved children’s poets with video interviews, and discover new authors, books and anthologies for K-5.
Celebrate National Poetry Month (Scholastic)
Webcasts, lessons, poetry prompts from well-known poets help inspire your young poets, for K-12.
Poetry (National Council of Teachers of English)
K-12 lessons and exercises, themed journals, and galleries of writing.
Find Poetry (Poets.org)
Browse poems in archive by title, first line, author last name or by occasion, for K-12.
Poems & Poets (Poetry Foundation)
A multi-approach search tool for poetry, for K-12.
Children’s Poetry (Poetry Foundation
Books of Children's Poetry
Celebrate Poem in Your Pocket Day: The idea is simple: select a poem you love then carry it with you ,sharing it with family and friends. You can also share your poem selection on Twitter by using the #pocketpoem.
Read a book of poetry: Don’t know where to begin? Start browsing on poets.org with their Find a Poet and Find a Poem sections and see what strikes you. You can also visit the Poems for Every Occasion section for mini-anthologies of poems grouped thematically or listen to recordings of poets people reading their own work in the Poetry Audio Archive. You can even travel in time and read the oldest written poem is the Epic of Gilgamesh from Babylon which is about 4,000 years old or the oldest poem in English, Beowulf, written in the 8th century AD.
Teach this Poem- K-12 Poetry Lesson
Favorite Poem Project - The Favorite Poem Project is dedicated to celebrating, documenting and encouraging poetry’s role in Americans’ lives.
Audio and Video
- Brief video poems (grades K-3)
- All Videos (K-12)
- Children's Poet Laureate Presents: Video
Mary Ann Hoberman, children's poet laureate, reading from her own work, as well as from favorite collections of classic children's poetry, for grades K-5.
- National Poetry Month at the Library of Congress Webcast (52:20)
Washington, D.C., poets Richard McCann and Kenny Carroll and young readers from district elementary schools took part in a National Poetry Month celebration, for grades K-5.
Audio & Podcasts (Poetry Foundation)
Readings of poems and interviews with poets.
- Poetry Archive (K-12)
PDF posters from past National Poetry Months
Grand Slam Poetry Champion- TED Talk
Famous Poets for Kids
Jack Prelutsky Talking about writing and Reading his poetry (3rd-5th gr)
Jack Prelutsky- Scholastic